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This fullscreen panorama was published in connection with the 50 year anniversary in May 2003, for the first who reached the top of Everest

50 years ago May 29 1953 The top of Mount Everest was reached for the first time by Edmund Hillary and Tenzing Norgay.
Since then 1.200-1.500 has climbed the top. Nobody knows the exact number. More than 140 climbers died on the way.

On May 24, 1989 the Australian photographer and mountaineer Roderick Mackenzie reached the summit. He was no 271 since 1953
He made which as far as I know is the only 360 degree panorama From the top.

Roderick Mackenzie made the image at the top of Mount Everest May 24 1989. Below is in his own words his feelings of the event.

It is from a book titled Everest Reflections From The Top by Christine Gee & Garry Weare which just been published. It contains contributions from many of the climbers who have reached the top during the last 50 years.

Why did I climb Everest?
I have a theory that people climb for the smell of it. Air at very high altitude smells completely different to lower altitudes. People become addicted to this smell and need more and more to get less and less of it. This is what makes them get higher.

What did I think of on the summit?
When I reached the south summit I was suffering from a lack of Spanish Olives. I was most preoccupied with thoughts of the tin of olives sitting in my tent at base camp. The preoccupation was the result of a very intense dream about olives which was interrupted by the alarm summoning me to our summit attempt. When I reached the south summit the view to the main summit interested me from a mountaineering point of view and all dreamings of olives were banished from my head.

On the summit I felt a mixture of apprehension and curiosity. Our only comments to each other after initial congratulations were about the fact that the summit is precisely half way. It seemed to me that the curvature of the earth was apparent, and I spent some time trying to think of a means to test if this was a real observation or an illusion. In the end I decided it was an illusion, but it was a strong illusion. Overall my main feeling was of surprise. I am often surprised by the situations that I find myself in.

My work in India has been eased slightly by my ascent of Everest. Many people on the subcontinent believe that an ascent of Everest conveys to the climber some manner of greater wisdom in manifold subjects. This I can not agree with, but I never dispute it.

Roderick Mackenzie

Mount Everest The British Story
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Nepal, Annapurna, Mera Peak panoramas by Alain Collet

Panoramic Image
© Roderick Mackenzie

Quicktime VR Version copyright Hans Nyberg

The original panoramic images used for this 360 degree panorama was made with a Widelux panoramic camera and stitched together from 3 images.

Prints of the panoramic images by Roderick Mackenzie can be ordered at
is created by Hans Nyberg.
The featured fullscreen panoramas are all copyright the individual photographers.

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