I was surprised to see the traffic jam at Mt Everest. People literally huddled next to each other waiting for what had to be a minute or two at the summit. It resembled to me more like a corporate self-development seminar than a real accomplishment, more a white middle aged rite of passage than something an experienced mountain climber-et ski bum, endurance climber, or whatever would do.
As for climbing the actual mountain, I was surprised at the traffic jam that had so many people literally back to back at the summit, and the trash and bodies left behind. Once Mt. Everest was for the hardiest and bravest, like trophy hunting was. Getting there was difficult and long, so only the wealthiest/bravest even tried to go. Perhaps what should happen was that the WorldTrust, or whoever it is who handles these world treasures should close down the mountain for a couple of years, hire sherpas and other hardy souls to clean it up, bury the bodies (or cremate them, as is more customary in that environment), and then ask for reservations.
Just as some great lakes have been overfished, some treasured places have been overwalked, over run. Places never meant for masses have been trodden over them.
Perhaps we should create replica places that people could go and have the experience at times. Venice, Indiana? Paris, Iowa? Castles in the Rocky Mountains? All of them could handle and enlighten those who want to go and save the real place for people who can pay the freight more easily.
Tags: out there somewhere