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January 14. The party on this occasion miner, Lanti. They left the upper camp was composed of Zurbriggen, Mr. Fitz- at 8.30 A.M., on a fine day, with every Gerald, Joseph Pollinger and Lanti- prospect of success, and an hour and a who is said to be a miner. They started half later the leader "was compelled at 7 A.M., "all in excellent spirits, yet to give in, in a state of complete colby one o'clock Mr. FitzGerald found lapse," and he went back (p. 103). Mr. that "he felt it was impossible for him Vines and Lanti proceeded. The latter to go any farther."
had been selected, it is said, because he Zurbriggen was sent forward, while had "felt less the effects of the altitude the others descended.
than the other porters." He is de
scribed as a big-boned man, slightly I shall never forget the descent that above medium height, spare almost to followed. I was so weak that my legs emaciation, and is spoken of favorably seemed to fold up under me at every
in several places in the course of the step, and I kept falling forward and
volume. Lanti's opinion was that bis cutting myself on the shattered stones that covered the sides of the mountain.
constitution had been permanently I do not know how long I crawled in
shattered by living at the upper caip, this miserable plight, steering for a big and, although he was, at the moment, patch of snow that lay in a sheltered
in good condition, took the opportunity spot, but I should imagine that it was
to express his views to Mr. Vines in about an hour and a half. On reaching the snow I lay down, and finally rolled
the following way. "Sir, the moundown a great portion of the mountain
tains of Europe are healthy; these side. As I got lower my strength re- mountains are very unhealthy. Why vived, and the nausea that I had been
do we climb these mountains, and why suffering from so acutely disappeared,
encamp and sleep at these great leaving me with a splitting headache. Soon after five o'clock I reached our
heights? We who have done so will tent. My headache was now so bad
find our lives wrecked by it" (p. 109), that it was with great difficulty I could and he is by no means the only person, see at all.
who has entertained that opinion. Zurbriggen arrived at the tent about
Mr. Vines and Lanti continued upan hour and a half later. He had succeeded in gaining the summit, and had
wards, and ultimately got to the sumplanted an ice-axe there; but he was mit. During the first hour the former
weak and tired that he could said, they did not appear to make much scarcely talk, and lay almost stupefied
progress, and he got anxious about their by fatigue. Though naturally and
rate, as it could not be imagined that justifiably elated by his triumph, at that moment he did not seem to care
that they would go faster as they got what happened to him. (Pp. 82, 83.) higher; on the contrary, there
A month later (on February 13), Mr. every reason to expect that their pace. FitzGerald had another try, along with would decrease. I have been curious. his companion, Mr. Vines, and the to work out and compare the respective
* This as an expression is quite wrong. Alti. tude in itself produces no effect. It is the diin. inution in atmospheric pressure, which becomes greater the higher one ascends, that affects the system.
• What Mr. Vines says is unquestionahly true. The pace of any given individuals bas a constant tendency to diminish the higher they ascend; and it is this fact amongst others, which renders it certain that the highest summits of the earth will only be reached (if they are ever reached) with very great difficulty and at very great cost.
On such ground as has to be traversed in mounting the pripicipal peaks of the Alps, as. cents are often made at the rate of, or about, 1,000 feet per hour; and
upon still lower ground a much more rapid rate can be attained. One
or the fastest performances on lower ground was accomplished in August 1808 by Edouard Payot, of Chamonix, aged 26. He started from Chamonix, 3,445 feet, and ascended the neighboring mountain called the Brevent, 8,284
in 89 minutes; and descended the 4,839 feet in 31 minutes. This was done in the presence of a large number of
rates of Zurbriggen on the first ascent, ascending the trouble seemed to leave" and of Mr. Vines and Lanti on the sec- -which, as the barometer must have. ond ascent of Aconcagua. I find that stood a little lower than 13 inches, (including halts) Zurbriggen went up shows that he is remarkably well fitted at the rate of 449 feet per hour from to live at low pressures. They found the upper camp to the summit, and that an ice-axe planted within a cairn which the others ascended at the rate of 513 Zurbriggen had erected, and saw that, feet per hour. Either of these rates beyond doubt, he had actually reached must be considered good, considering the top. On the descent their troubles the great elevation at which they were recommenced directly they got into attained.
and They reached the top at 5 P.M., weariness continued to the end." having taken eight hours and a half to Although some felt it more and others. ascend from the camp. Mr. Vines less, the universal experience of those states that of the two he was himself who reached the greater heights which the more done up. When they were were attained upon this expedition above 21,000 feet they were in such a was that low atmospheric pressures. condition that the slightest rebuff produce very great inconveniences and damped their spirits, and forced them acute pains, and that life at high altito stop and rest.
tudes, at least temporarily, has
weakening effect. Upon their attempts to Our patience and endurance were ascend Tupungato, the height of which tried to the utmost. We seemed to
is put at 21,550 feet, one after another stop every ten yards, and, in fact,
collapsed. Zurbriggan was the first to spent more time in resting than in ad.
be affected, nd “began to be very sick.. vancing; and yet we found it impossible to sit, or lie down, as inclination
He had, no doubt, been feeling ill for dictated. The relaxing of the muscles some time" (during the ascent], "but of the legs on assuming a reclining po- had said nothing about it. His voice sition acted disastrously as soon as we was full of chagrin as he confessed his resumed the ascent, for the lower
condition. He could not undersiaud it. limbs seemed first to have lost power,
He had never felt like this before. .. and then, after a step or two, were racked with a dull aching.
He looked very bad and groaned at perience soon taught us that there was every step. Certainly he was in no cononly one position for rest,—to stand dition to continue the ascent." Howwith the legs wide apart, the body
ever, he went on slowly, and then anthrown forward, the hands grasping
other mishap occurred. the head of the ice-axe, and the fore head resting on the hands.
We missed Lochmatter! But lookMr. FitzGerald, who watched them
ing back we saw him shuffling up the
gentle sloping debris so slowly that he from below, reports that they seemed
seemed almost motionless. We shouted excessively fatigued, and that he no
to ask what was the matter. He anticed that it caused them great efforts swered feebly, and as if ashamed to to go on, pausing every few moments, confess it: “Nothing's the matter; it's leaning on their ice-axes, and that at
my legs, I can't make it out; they
won't work any more.” It was a ridictimes they slipped and fell. Yet, upon
ulous situation. Here was a powergetting to the summit, Mr. Vines says
ful young fellow, with a splendid phy. he felt stronger-“so soon as we ceased
sique, carrying but the lightest of loads, and saying that nothing was on alone, and reached the summit in the matter, but that his legs had given 9 1-4 hours from their camp, having out. (P. 183.)
spectators. Edouard Payot was promptly absorbed in the French Army. Although this young man is exceptionally nimble, it is by DO
means certain that he would have shown to ad vantage on the summit of Aconcagua.
mounted at the rate of 492 feet per
hour, which was a shade slower than Upon a fourth and successful attempt
his pace upon Aconcagua. Zurbriggen to ascend Tupungato, Joseph Pollinger
joined him some time afterwards. (a very active young man and an ex
In the Andean regions of South cellent mountaineer) broke down. Mr.
America everybody has heard of the Vines says:
troubles which occur to respiration
when one is at great elevations and Zurbriggen and I turned round and looked at Pollinger, who was lying various specifics are freely recomflat on his face and groaning. He was mended to correct them. Acting under suffering violent pains in the abdomen, advice, the members of the FitzGerald and be declared between his gasps that expedition tried eating raw onions and he felt very sick and ill, and could not
a decoction of a herb (chacha coma), go another step higher.
We were anxious to take him with us, so I tried
which had been praised as "a most to persuade him that he would be all wonderful remedy" apparently, with right after a short rest, and proposed the usual-that is to say, with no-rethat Zurbriggen and I should divide sult. Of the herb, Mr. Vines says that bis pack between us, so as to make he considered that it would be as well things as easy as possible for him. But,
to get the whole party used to it by as he still insisted that he felt far too ill to go on, and seemed to have a
making a brew several times a day. great desire to descend as soon as possible, we gave up trying to persuade It has the appearance of a dried-up him. "Let me get down lower! For bramble, bright yelow in color, with a God's sake let me descend; I shall die yellow, white flower, somewbat resemif I stop here!" was his only answer bling edelweiss. Sticks and leaves to us.
.. The only remedy for his were put each morning into a sauceillness was to descend with all speed pan, boiling water poured on, and the to a lower altitude; he would be well whole left to soak a minute or two. if only he could get down a thousand Sugar was used according to taste. feet or more. (Pp. 197, 198.)
Then calling up the porters, I served half a cup all round. Each one would
drink, thank me, and say it was very So Joseph turned back, and the two
good. But they never asked for more. others continued upwards. Mr. Vines
Doctors say that a great many remarks that he himself was not in a
patients think nothing of a remedy ungood state, although the conditions were less it has either a striking color, a favorable—it was a fine day with a nasty taste, or a strong smell. If the cloudless sky. The air seemed flat to
last two qualities are proof of a medi
cine's value, then chacha coma must be his thirsty lungs. “Yet slowly, and
an excellent remedy. (P. 179.)
When the expedition came to an end, suddenly, without a moment's warning, most of the staff returned to Europe Zurbriggen sat down on the ground and via the Transandine Railway and Buexclaimed, 'I'm finished-I go no far- enos Aires, and some of the others ther! . . . In the greatest anxiety I crossed the Cumbre Pass into Chili. asked him to tell me his symptoms. There does not a pear to be much in'It's my legs! he answered, they will ducement to reside at the terminus of not carry me a step farther'” (p. 200). the Transandine Railway in Argentina. This was no great distance below the The town which might be expected to top. Mr. Vines courageously pressed be found at the terminal station of a
Trans-Continental line is scarcely in take the luggage down in one's lap, embryo.
and it therefore suffers a great deal be
fore the bottom is reached. The men The only building in the place be
content themselves with rolling the sides the station, a small, low, wooden panniers over from the top of the shanty, is a little inn or house known slope, and, in their downward course, as the "posada.” There were also, it they strike against projecting rocks, or is true, a few sheds belonging to the
occasionally land in a deep drift, from Villa Longa Express Company, who which they have to be rescued. Firun the coach service across the Andes. nallywhen they are gathered toThe posada itself is formed of mud gether, it is plain they have not been huts round a courtyard, the doors of
improved in strength or shape by the all the rooms opening into the open
rough usage they have undergone. (Pp. air. In the wet weather during the
286, 287.) winter there is about six inches of water in most of the rooms, and I have There are many points of interest in seen the bar and dining-room with as Mr. FitzGerald's volume which cannot much as two feet of water in it. For
be touched upon here; but its chief sleeping there are a few straw truckle
attraction lies in the frank and clear beds with blankets thrown over them. The only provision of which a large description of the loftiest ascent which stock is kept in the place is Worcester has hitherto been made, and in the can. Sauce.
did avowal of the difficulties which
were encountered. He indicates very There is a carriage road of a rough
clearly the troubles which will occur kind over the Cumbre, and not a few
to those who try to reach great eleva. people cross this pass (12,800 feet) in
tions. There is not the least doubt the summer. Traffic is almost sus
that those who may endeavor to scale pended in the winter, as the summit is
the highest mountains will have similar snow-covered and storms are frequent.
experiences at all times, and in every The manner of descending into Chili
part of the world. Some men, however, during the winter is rather original,
suffer more and earlier than others. and the description of the way in which
Mr. Vines and Zurbriggen have shown goods are handled will not encourage
themselves exceptionally able to withexporters to send freight to Valparaiso
stand large reductions in atmospheric by that route.
pressure; while the contrary is mani
fest in Mr. FitzGerald, who speaks reThe way the natives conduct the descent is as follows. Each traveller is peatedly of being overcome by nausea, provided with a large and stout apron
indigestion and other matters. made of sheepskin, which is fastened comparatively low elevation the rate of on behind, the wool next to his body. his pulse was 130 to 140. He speaks He then sits down upon it, gathers his
even of spitting blood. It is certainly legs together, and pushes himself off.
to be regretted that his enterprise did Protected thus against the roughness of the snow, he descends rapidly, guid
not meet with better success, and it is ing himself with a pointed staff, and to be hoped that the knowledge which steering in and out among the great he has gained will serve him on future and dangerous boulders studding the
occasions in other mountainous regions mountain side. This way of sliding down the snow-slopes is speedy and
equally interesting, though, perhaps, not unpleasing, but it is impossible to
less lofty than the Highest Andes. The Leisure pour.
Edward Whymper. LIVING AGE.
THE HEART OF DARKNESS.*
BY JOSEPH CONRAD.
leaped and the loud splash made me
jump as though a gun had been fired. "Toward the evening of the second When the sun rose there was a white day we judged ourselves about eight fog, very warm and clammy, and more miles from Kurtz's station. I wanted blinding than the night. It did not shift to push on, but the manager looked or drive; it was just there, standing all grave, and told me the navigation up round you, like something solid. At 8 there was so dangerous that it would or 9, perhaps, it lifted as a shutter lifts. be advisable, the sun being very low We had a glimpse of the towering mulalready, to wait where we were till titude of trees, of the immense matted next morning. Moreover, he pointed jungle, with the blazing little ball of out, that if the warning to approach the sun hanging over it-all perfectly cautiously was to be followed, we must still and then the white shutter came approach in daylight-not at dusk, or down again, smoothly, as if sliding in in the dark. This was sensible enough. greased grooves. I ordered the chain, Eight miles meant nearly three hours' which we had begun to heave in, to be steaming for us, and I could also see paid out again. It ran with a mufied suspicious ripples at the upper end of rattle, and then a cry, a very loud cry, the reach. Nevertheless, I was annoyed as of infinite desolation, soared slowly beyond expression at the delay, and in the opaque air. It ceased. A commost unreasonably, too, since one night plaining clamor, modulated in savage more could not matter much after so discord, filled our ears. The sheer unmany months. As we had plenty of expectedness of it made my hair stir wood, and caution was the word, I under my cap. I don't know how it brought up in the middle of the stream. struck the others; to me it seemed as The reach was narrow, straight, with though the mist itself had screamed, high sides like a railway cutting. The so suddenly, and apparently from all dusk came gliding into it long before sides at once did this tumultuous and the sun had set. The current ran mournful uproar arise. It culminated smooth and swift, but a damb immobil- in a hurried outbreak of almost intolity sat on the banks. The living trees, erably excessive shrieking, which lashed together by the creepers, and stopped short, leaving us stiffened in a every living bush of the undergrowth, variety of attitudes, and obstinately might have been changed into stone, listening to the nearly as appalling and even to the slenderest twig, to the excessive silence. "Good God! What lightest leaf. It
not sleep-it is the meaning-? stammered at my seemed unnatural, like a state of trance. elbow one of the pilgrims, a little, fat Not the faintest sound of any kind man, with sandy hair and red whiskers, could be heard. You looked on amazed, who wore side-spring boots and pink and began to suspect yourself of being pajamas tucked into his socks. Two deaf-then the night came suddenly, others remained open-mouthed a whole and struck you blind as well. About minute, then dashed into the little three in the morning some large fish cabin, to rush out incontinently and * Copyright by 8. S. McClure & Co.
stand darting scared glances, with