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Adventure Magazine

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Michael and Diana Finkel
Writer Michael Finkel and his sister, Diana Finkel



Life on Assignment
First Ascent, Family Style
She smashed his Matchbox cars. He guillotined her Barbie. Decades later, could Michael and Diana Finkel play nice in their push to become the first brother-sister team to summit an 8,000-meter peak? Just listen.

Cho Oyu is the world's sixth tallest mountain, numbers among the fabled 14 peaks above 8,000 meters (26,250 feet), and has been climbed as many times as Everest—which isn't all that often, actually.

Fewer than 3,200 people have summited an 8,000-meter peak, yet many of the firsts on these mountains have already been claimed. To snatch up a record-setting ascent, you have to get creative, which is exactly what Adventure contributing editor Michael Finkel and his sister, Diana Finkel, did.

Last year the Finkels attempted Cho Oyu in hopes of becoming the first brother-sister team to climb an 8,000-meter peak. Writer Michael Finkel recounts the experience in "Little Sister, Big Mountain" in the November 2002 issue of Adventure (read an excerpt of the article.)

In the audio clips at left, both siblings share behind-the-scenes tales from their climb.

—Nicole Davis


Photograph by Beth Wald




  Related Web Sites

Everest: Measure of a Mountain
Relive the National Geographic expedition that discovered the true height of Earth's highest peak.

National Geographic, 1963: "How We Climbed Everest"
Classic images and excerpts from climber Barry Bishop.

Eric Simonson, Everest Sleuth
The preeminent Everest guide spoke with Adventure online about the ill-fated 1924 Irvine-Mallory Everest expedition.
 

Audio

Download RealPlayer

Michael on What It Takes (4:04)
"You can have all the money in the world, all the time in the world, you can be Lance Armstrong. But if you don't have good weather, you're not getting past base camp."
LISTEN
RealPlayer 28.8 | 56.6


Michael on Sibling Rivalry (3:25)
"There's bound to be ancient battles recreated from the time she smashed my Matchbox cars and the time I guillotined her Barbie dolls."
LISTEN
RealPlayer 28.8 | 56.6


Diana on Sibling Rivalry (1:34)
"We do that for one another: push each other in that sibling-rivalry, sibling-friendship sort of way."
LISTEN
RealPlayer 28.8 | 56.6


Diana on Sherpas (1:41)
"You would shake your hands just for a second in the morning, when your fingers were cold, and if Pasang or Nambal—our Sherpas—saw that, they would immediately take off their gloves and give them to you."
LISTEN
RealPlayer 28.8 | 56.6


Michael on Life and Death at Base Camp (2:10)
"There were parties, there were difficult times, there was one fatality, and there were several injuries."
LISTEN
RealPlayer 28.8 | 56.6


Michael on Altitude Sickness (2:24)
"You actually feel like you are dying, for lack of a better word. Because you are."
LISTEN
RealPlayer 28.8 | 56.6


Diana on Altitude Sickness (3:43)
"It was amazing. The altitude really kicked my ass."
LISTEN
RealPlayer 28.8 | 56.6




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November 2002:



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