Explorers Web has made the move to strip Korean climber Oh Eun-Sun of the status as the first woman to climb all 14 of the 8000 meter peaks due to the continued dispute over whether or not she actually reached the summit of Kangchenjunga in 2009.
As you probably recall, Miss Oh reached the top of Annapurna this past spring, which was suppose to be her final peak before setting the mark as the first female to scale all the big mountains. Spanish climber Edurne Pasaban topped out on Shisha Pangma a few weeks later, becoming the second woman to accomplish that feat. Or so we all thought. Controversy followed when Edurne issued a protest of Oh’s Kangchenjunga summit after several Sherpas stepped forward to claim that the Korean expedition didn’t reach the summit. There were also no photos of Miss Oh on the summit either, just some non-discript rock on the mountain.
Miss Oh has continued to claim that she did indeed reach the summit of Kangchenjunga, so the whole affair turned into a “she said, she said” affair. For the most part, the controversy simmered own, with even Edurne seemingly admitting that Oh had claimed the record. For her part, Elizabeth Hawley, the grand dame of Himalayan record keeping, has marked Oh’s Kangchenjunga summit as “disputed” as well, not seeing enough evidence to weigh either direction. But as the days wore on, the mountaineering community came to accept the fact that Korean climber was the first to join the elite ranks of 8000-meter summitteers.
Last week, ExWeb made the move to strip her of that crown and hand it over to Edurne. I haven’t read the complete report, as it is behind their new pay wall and not accessible to the general public, but it’s pretty easy to get the gist of their argument. They feel the evidence against Miss Oh is strong enough to justify the move and the ExWeb editors feel that she never officially reached the top of the 8,586 m (28,169 ft) Kangchenjunga.
Has anyone bothered to spring for the ExWeb Subscription yet? Have you read the article? Thoughts on stripping Eun-Sun of the crown and giving it to Pasaban? Does anyone see this as the “official” view?
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