Climbing Asia’s Forgotten Mountain, Part 2

Part 2 of 3: Now at base camp after a challenging trek through the jungle, the team begins to prepare to climb Hkakabo Razi. Hilaree O'Neill talks about how, with only eight to 10 days of food remaining and only one-third of the gear they had at the beginning of the trip, the team starts up the mountain and is faced with constant setbacks. Dead ends and the inability to find a direct path up plague their climb, taking a physical, mental, and emotional toll on the climbers and destroying the team dynamic.

The quest to climb Hkakabo Razi in the remote area of northern Myanmar was conceived by Hilaree O'Neill and Mark Jenkins and their yearning for an "anti-Everest" expedition. In the fall of 2014, Hilaree O'Neill, the expedition leader, and Mark Jenkins, Cory Richards, Renan Ozturk, and Emily Harrington set out to climb this formidable peak and determine whether it is the highest peak in Southeast Asia by standing on top with a GPS. What followed was a demanding journey full of setbacks that would push these five climbers to their limits emotionally, physically, and mentally. Hear Hilaree O'Neill talk about this epic expedition and being taken to "the point of no return.

More about Hilaree O'Neill

Read the full-length article about the climb online in National Geographic magazine

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PRODUCER: Hilary Hudson
EDITOR: Monica Pinzon