Location: Nepal, Asia
First Ascent: Maurice Herzog and Louis Lachenal (France), June 3, 1950
- Annapurna is a Sanskrit word that literally means “full of food” but translates to Goddess of the Harvest. Annapurna is a Hindu fertility goddess.
- Annapurna I is the highest point of a 34-mile-long range, which is east of the Kali Gandaki River’s deep gorge.
- Annapurna was the first 8,000-meter peak climbed and the first climbed without supplemental oxygen.
- Maurice Herzon and Louis Lachenal, the first to summit Annapurna in 1950, were part of a French team that included other great climbers including Gaston Rébuffat and Lionel Terray.
- Herzog and Lachenal both suffered severe frostbite on their feet and Herzog on his hands after losing his gloves. Gangrene set in afterward, forcing the expedition doctor to amputate fingers and toes in the field without anesthetic.
- Maurice Herzog wrote the book Annapurna about the 1950 expedition, which has sold over 11 million copies, making it the best-selling climbing book of all time.
- In 1970 the South Face of Annapurna was first climbed by Don Whillans and Dougal Haston, part of a British expedition led by Sir Chris Bonington. This was also the second ascent of the mountain along with a British Army expedition on the north face.
- The 1978 American Women’s Annapurna Expedition, composed only of women, made the first American ascent of the mountain.
- Annapurna is the most dangerous 8000-meter peak with an expedition fatality rate of 40%.
- The Annapurna trek around the range is one of the most popular high-altitude treks in Nepal.
Annapurna by Maurice Herzog. The story about the 1950 first ascent of Annapurna by its expedition leader and one of the first summitteers. It's the best-selling climbing book of all time.
True Summit by David Roberts. A masterful refutation of Herzog's sanitized and heroic version of events portrayed in Annapurna, including Herzog's virtual erasure of his climbing partner Louis Lachenal.