Posted by: a2cristina | January 20, 2016

Mount Everest



Read the text and complete the chart below with a word from the list that comes after the text. Every word can only be used ONCE. There are five words that you do not need to use. Question 0 has been answered as an example.



In 1802, the British launched what became known as the Great Trigonometrical Survey in order to map the Indian subcontinent. Heavy equipment, rugged terrain, monsoons, malaria and scorpions made the work exceedingly difficult. Nonetheless, the surveyors were able to take 0) ________________ accurate measurements. They soon proved that the Himalayas—and not the Andes, as previously believed—were the world’s highest mountain 1) ________________. By 1852, not only had they fingered Everest, then called Peak XV, as the king of them all, but, by 1856, they had also calculated its height as 29,002 feet 2) ________________ sea level. A 1999 survey using state-of-the-art GPS technology found them off by only 33 feet.

George Mallory, a British schoolteacher, participated in the first three documented attempts to scale Mount Everest from 1921 to 1924. Before the last of those expeditions, he wrote, “It is almost unthinkable…that I shan’t get to the top; I can’t see myself coming down defeated.” On June 4, 1924, a teammate made it within about 900 vertical feet of the 3) ________________ before turning back. Mallory and climbing partner Andrew Irvine then made their own attempt for glory. They departed the 26,800-foot Camp VI on June 8 and were last seen that afternoon trudging upwards in their tweed coats, hobnailed boots and other primitive apparel. Some people believe that Mallory and Irvine reached the roof of Everest before dying on the way down. A camera they 4) ________________ carried could perhaps solve the mystery, but it was not among the items in Mallory’s pockets when his corpse finally was discovered in 1999. Irvine’s body remains unfound.

After Mallory’s death, the next 10 or so expeditions to Mount Everest also failed. Tenzing 5) ________________ valuable experience participating in six of them, starting off as a porter and later progressing into a full team member. In 1952 he and a Swiss climber came within about 800 vertical feet of the top—likely higher than anyone had ever gone. He 6) ________________ his own record the next year by reaching the top with Hillary. Since then, around 4,000 other mountaineers have likewise climbed Everest, including Hillary’s son and one of Tenzing’s sons.

About 240 people have died attempting to climb Mount Everest. Avalanches, rockslides, blizzards, falls, altitude sickness, freezing temperatures, exhaustion and combinations have all proven fatal, particularly in the so-called “death zone” above 26,000 feet. Since getting them down is grueling and dangerous, most of the corpses remain up there. They are well 7) __________ in the snow and apparently serve as trail markers for climbers who pass by. Everest’s deadliest day occurred in May 1996, when eight people perished in a storm. Yet that incident, made famous by Jon Krakauer’s book “Into Thin Air,” did nothing to deter people from spending tens of thousands of dollars for a chance to tame Earth’s highest mountain. Traffic jams have even been reported near the top, and a fistfight broke 8) ________________ this April between three European climbers and more than 100 Sherpas, over what the guides considered to be rude and dangerous behavior during an attempted ascent. 9) __________, the deaths keep coming, including at least 10 last year and around eight this year.

As early as 1963, a climber wrote in National Geographic that parts of Mount Everest had become “the highest junkyard on the face of the Earth.” Empty oxygen bottles, human excrement, food packaging, broken climbing 10) ________________ and torn tents continue to spoil the environment there. A single cleanup in spring 2011 removed over 8 tons of trash from Everest, and many more tons remain uncollected. In order to counteract the problem, Nepal’s government now requires climbers to bring back all of their equipment or risk losing a $4,000 deposit. New trash bins and a waste incinerator have also recently been installed near the mountain.
Adapted from:



ABOVE                         EARNED                        MAINTAINED               PRESERVED

ASTONISHINGLY         GAINED                        MEANWHILE               RANGE

BROKE                          GEAR                            OUT                              SUMMIT

CORD                           KEPT                             OVER                            SUPPOSEDLY


1         6      
2 7
3 8
4 9
5 10



  1. RANGE
  2. ABOVE
  6. BROKE
  8. OUT
  10. GEAR




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