Denali
Three climbers spent six days and six nights inside a cramped snow cave at 18,200 feet during the first winter ascent of Denali, the highest mountain in North America, in 1967.

A 1967 Expedition Puts Social Distancing in Perspective

A lesson in perspective

Denali

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Over the past few weeks of adjusting to the gradually expanding new rules of not traveling, then not going to restaurants or coffee shops in my city, and then not leaving my house except for essential tasks like buying groceries, I started thinking about adventure stories that would enable some perspective on our synchronous isolation. And I kept remembering one of the most uncomfortable stories I’ve ever read, in one of the best adventure books of all time. In Art Davidson’s Minus 148 Degrees, three climbers spend six days and six nights inside a cramped snow cave at 18,200 feet during the first winter ascent of Denali, the highest mountain in North America, in 1967. 

So I thought I’d compare the two situations, just for a little levity.

(Brendan Leonard)

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