Report: Everest Eurocopter Landing Was Hoax

Everestnews is reporting that the Civil Aviation Authority of Nepal has said the pilot of the Eurocopter has told them that he did not actually land on the Everest summit on May 14 and 15 as widely publicized but rather 1,000 meters lower on the South Col (and then it only hovered).
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Posted in ***Top Stories***, 7 Summits, Controversies, Everest, Helicopter Rescues, Highpoint News (world), Urban Legends by with comments disabled.

Woman Uses Cell Phone Light to Flag Rescue Helicopter

CBS5 reports Kathy Karlen used a lighted cell phone to flag a rescue helicopter at Shiloh Park near Windsor, California.
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Posted in Accidents, California, Helicopter Rescues, Offbeat by with comments disabled.

A New Search in The Woods — Letterboxing

The Boston Globe reports a new variation on geocache — called letterboxing.
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Hiker Survives Month With Leech in Nostril

News24 reports a leech lodged in the nostril of a Hong Kong woman after she washed her face in a stream.
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Posted in Accidents, Animals, Asia, Offbeat by with comments disabled.

Austria To Wrap Snow With Foil to Prevent Melting

The Taipei Times reports that Austrian ski resorts plan to wrap their snow with plastic foil to decrease melting.
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Posted in Austria, Europe, Global Warming, Offbeat by with comments disabled.

Stuck SUV Saves Hiker Stranded in New Mexico Snow

The Gallup Independent has a strange tale about a lost hiker whose life was saved because the keys were in an SUV stuck in a 5′ New Mexico snowdrift. Chuck Whitney got stuck on County Route 50 and so he and his girlfriend camped out while they waited for help the next day. In the middle of the night they heard a car door slam and the engine start but didn’t investigate because they thought the region was too remote for anybody else to be there. The next morning he found foot prints and saw somebody had been in the car although they had left. Whitney found out later after reading a newspaper report that the person in the car was Mike Miller who had spent 23 hours lost in a snowstorm and was subject of a statewide search. After drying his clothes Miller walked further down the road where he was picked up by a passing motorist.


Posted in Accidents, New Mexico, Offbeat by with comments disabled.

First Tripoint Report 3500 to 5500 Year BC

The Boundary Point Yahoo Group has a report abount gurji tehara which is Hindu for boundary pillar marking the spot where the
borders of 3 villages meet dating from vedic aka early bronze age times circa 3500 to 5500 years bp.


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TV News Copter In Rescue on Mount Bierstadt

The DenverChannel reports a Channel 7 helicopter plucked 42-year-old hiker from Littleton, Colo., off 14,060 foot Mount Bierstadt. Wendy Dean had gotten caught in white out conditions and a search was in progress. Dean said she became disoriented in the snowstorm, fell and lost her snowshoes. She was stranded for more than 8 hours while her two friends made it back down to the top of Guanella Pass and called for help. The helicopter rescued her at at the 12,600 foot level and of course the whole thing was videotaped. The copter pilot noted, “We missed the 6 p.m. newscast,” said Westra. “I’m sure I’ll hear bout it from the boss, but I feel that we did get her home.”


Posted in Accidents, Colorado, General, Helicopter Rescues, Offbeat by with comments disabled.

Highpoint Headline: Wheeler Assumes Command of Whitney

Here’s a highpoint headline from Stars and Stripes: Wheeler assumes command of USS Mount Whitney. Of the course the story is about Capt. C. Ladd Wheeler assuming commander of the new 6th Fleet flagship.


Posted in California, Highpoint (States) News, New Mexico, Offbeat by with comments disabled.

“Virus Without Boarders” Hitchhiking to Asian and European Highpoints

There’s a highpoint story in here somewhere about a Ukrainian group hitchhiking to climb highpoints throughout Asia and Europe. However I think something might be lost in translation:
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Posted in Adventures, Highpoint News (world), Offbeat by with comments disabled.

NASA Seeks Help Identifying UFO Over Haleakala and Mauna Kea

The astronomy obsessed Hawaii is buzzing over a UFO over Mauna Kea and Haleakala on December 17, 2004. A moving image of the UFO (380K) was published as NASA’s photo of the day today (Feb. 8). Officials ruled out known satellites or aircraft. Current candidates include a known satellite that was somehow missed by heavens-above, a recently launched rocket, and a passing space rock. NASA has set up a ***VERY BUSY*** discussion thread to discuss it. One poster wrote: “What is truly bizarre is that this object is visible for a good 55 minutes at Haleakala and close to 30 minutes at Mauna Kea. Usually, satellites take a few dozen seconds or, at the most, a couple of minutes to cross the entire sky. “If this object is a satellite, it is either very slow moving or at a very high altitude. I checked all the possibilities at Heavens-Above and no satellite passes seem to fit this observation. It is also impossible to be a meteorite.” For what it is worth the 16-foot asteroid that passed in December flew between earth’s manmade satellites and the surface and was the second closest recorded approach in history. It appeared with virtually no warning. At the risk of giving a spoiler, the conensus on the board was that it was a satellite.


Posted in Hawaii, Offbeat, Phenomenon, Space by with comments disabled.

Microsoft Seeks Patent on Longitude/Latitude

Slashdot has got tongues wagging over what it considers in essence an attempt by Micosoft to patent latitude/longitude over the presentation of data. The problem Microsoft says is that latitude/longitude in URL’s can take up too many digits. In the example in its patent application it notes to get one meter accuracy, the URL would have to be 19 charcters (e.g., 122.12926,47.64932). As I understand it, Microsoft is proposing to shorten the notation to base-30 notations so that alphabetic characters could be used thus shortening the URL. Comments on slashdot note that Microsoft would have been better off to using base-60 notations (e.g., 60 minutes in a degree, etc.) to comments that if this was implemented Microsoft would have a proprietary method of interacting with maps.

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Posted in Maps, Offbeat, Technology by with comments disabled.

Couple in India To Tie Knot 2,000 Feet In the Air Coming From Different Mountains

Mumbai News reports that an Indian couple plans to get married suspended by ropes between mountains 2,000 feet off the ground. Harnessed to a rope, the groom (Ashriwad Ayre) will move towards the centre of the gap from Duke’s Nose while his bride will (Bharti Patil)come from Duchess Peak. A Hindu priest, suspended from another rope, will conduct the 45-minute ceremony in Lonavala. This site has info on Duke’s Nose This place is named after Duke Wellington whose pointed nose this cliff resembles. It also looks like a hood of a snake, which is why it is also called as “Nagfani” (Hood of Snake). This point can be approach from INS Shivaji and Kurwande Village. Watching the nature’s beauty here is an unforgettable experience. There’s a lot of beautiful pix available via google search.


Posted in Adventures, Asia, Offbeat by with comments disabled.

How to Ice Climb in Iowa? Use a Silo!

The Los Angeles Times reports that Don Briggs at the University of Northern Iowa has a way for Midwesterners to ice climb by using grain silos. This is accomplished by pouring water from a hose down a concrete (not metal) silo. Climbers will be competing this weekend to climb four silos — 55 to 70 feet high. Course record for a 65-foot silo is 23 seconds.


Posted in Adventures, Iowa, Offbeat by with comments disabled.

Urban Legend?: Man Pees His Way Out Of Avalanche in Slovak Tatra Mountains

Update Feburary 3, 2004:
This is being discussed in our Forum and it was reported to Snopes to see if it is an urban legend. Snopes still calls it “undertermined” but notes there earlier was Czech story along the same lines that was mailed across Europe. A Slovak News Agency has never heard the story.
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Posted in Accidents, Avalanches, Europe, Offbeat, Urban Legends by with comments disabled.