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Climbing Mt. Everest to the Top of the World

28 January 2011 admin 3,293 views No Comment Email This Post Email This Post Print This Post Print This Post

This month, Upper School Assistant Principal Ryan Dahlem and his father Dr. John Dahlem spoke to Middle and Upper School students and parents about their successful Himalayan expedition and climb of Mt. Everest, the highest mountain in the world at 29,035 ft., in the spring of 2010. Next Friday, February 4, at 9 a.m., they will give an encore presentation to the Lower School in the Chapel. Parents are welcome to attend.

Mr. Dahlem told their 66-day journey that began on March 28, 2010 and took them through Kathmandu, Nepal, on a trek through the Khumbu Valley to the famed Everest Base Camp where they spent two months of grueling acclimatization rotations to prepare for their summit bid. They encountered extreme physical demands, many cultures, religions and ways of life, including meeting a Buddhist Lama Incarnate at an historic monastery in Tengboche who prayed for them to retain inner peace on their climb.

The Dahlems said the journey brought them new perspective and unforgettable experiences. The most significant was standing on top of the world when they reached the summit on May 24, 2010, a feat achieved by only a few thousand people. The Dahlems are the oldest father-son climbing team to summit Mt. Everest. At 67 years old, Dr. Dahlem is the second oldest American to reach the top.

The presentation featured dramatic accounts and footage, including breathtaking images from the treacherous Khumbu Ice Fall, jubilant footage of the summit that elicited a round of applause from the audience, and a display of the technical climbing gear that protected them in the extreme conditions.

View the dramatic footage:

To read more about the Dahlems’ May 2010 Mt. Everest climb, including coverage in The Orange County Register, click here.

Look for the Winter 2011 Highlander magazine in your mailbox in February to read a feature story about the Dahlems’ Mt. Everest expedition.


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