Leave it to the Sourdoughs

I love the sourdough reference:

“In the spring and summer of 1910, as (Hiram) Bingham sat in New Haven sifting through the evidence about Vilcabamba (Peru) … the newly self-described explorer would have found it almost impossible to pick up a newspaper without reading about one expedition or another. (Dr. Frederick) Cook and (Robert) Peary were feuding publicly over who had reached the North Pole first. Norway’s (Roald) Amundsen sent England’s (Robert Falcon) Scott a telegram announcing that he planned to beat him to the South Pole. And a group of amateur “sourdoughs” shocked the mountaineering world with their claim to have climbed the north summit of Mount McKinley, fueled by doughnuts and hot chocolate.”

from: “Turn Right at Machu Picchu” by Mark Adams

Alaska Sidenote:

Frederick Cook claimed, in 1906, to have been the first to summit Mt McKinley. His claim has since been discredited.

Fake Peak

Noted explorer and photographer (among other trades) Bradford Washburn, later proved that none of the photographs that Cook took on his 1906 McKinley Expedition had been taken anywhere near the summit. In fact, the peak in the photo above, which Cook claimed was Denali’s summit, is now known as Fake Peak.

The four locals, Tom Lloyd, Peter Anderson, Billy Taylor, and Charles McGonagall, which became known as “The Sourdough Expedition”, attempted the North Summit in 1910, while carrying a spruce pole. Two of the Sourdoughs did make the summit. Their claim was not believed until 1913, when another team climbed the North Summit, and found the spruce pole that the Sourdoughs had erected near the top. The team of sourdoughs had absolutely no climbing experience whatsoever.

A special shoutout to Mr Mark Adams. Love the book so far. Don’t forget your second pair of socks.

About icefogger

Just a basic, down to Earth, laid back type of guy here, who loves the outdoors, the indoors, jazz on the turntable, a fire in the woodstove, the northern lights blazing across the sky, and the company of good friends. View all posts by icefogger

2 responses to “Leave it to the Sourdoughs

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