Mission #4: 2027: Mars, Ho! (Cont.)

Jan 10, 2002
Outside Magazine

ROCKET SHOES GOT US UP the sheer 10,000-foot basal cliff that surrounds Olympus Mons in minutes. Didn't need those portaledges stuck on the cliffside, and just as well. The suction cups that held them there popped off after half an hour, and down they went.

NO NICE SHARP EVEREST-LIKE peak at the summit, just the rim around a 50-mile-wide crater two miles deep. Fox outbid Disney for naming rights (Mount Murdoch), and their little JetCams were everywhere. Big wrap-up show, NASA on one frequency and the Fox director on the other. America's poet laureate had written our script, but the TelePrompTer blippoed, so they went to a commercial instead. Was the world ever miffed!
You're three times as strong in the Martian atmosphere as you are on Earth. We felt like action figures up there. It's no secret that all of us mountainauts were treated for depression when we got back. The letdown. Just brutal.

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