The iconic and majestic Matterhorn, at 14,692 feet the 10th tallest mountain in the Alps, was one of the last prodigious Alpine peaks to be successfully climbed.
It is said that more than 500 alpinists have died on the Matterhorn since the first ascent in 1865, and one look at the terrifying video posted by Joshua Pennell on Facebook offers a glimpse as to why.
Pennell was filmed as he reached the peak of the Matterhorn. Near as we can tell, Facebook is the only place you’ll be able to see his incredible steps with massive drop-offs on either side of him. One misstep and, well, you’ll get the idea when you watch it:
Since being posted on August 31, the day he summited, the video has garnered more than 36,000 shares, which is no surprise.
Pennell wrote that he muted the video to spare viewers “the crew dull heavy breaking noise.” He also wrote that it took 7 hours to summit and 8 hours to descend, and added, “that is one fun mountain.”
The reaction on Facebook is what you might expect:
“Wow, that looks amazing! And terrifying!”
“Amazing … and breathless.”
“Damn dude, this really is scary to look at. Nerves of steel.”
“That’s pretty awesome. Walking a razor’s edge.”
Walking on a razor’s edge captures the moment perfectly.
Deaths on the Matterhorn are due to falls, inexperience, underestimating the mountain, bad weather, and falling rocks.
The first successful ascent led by Edward Whymper suffered the loss of four climbers on the descent.
Soon after Pennell’s ascent, Richard Branson’s son needed to be rescued from the Matterhorn peak by helicopter when he came down with acute altitude sickness.
So, lest you think otherwise, the Matterhorn is definitely no walk in the park.
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