American Alpine Jounrna and Accidents in North American Climbing

Asia, Tibet, Cho Oyu, First African-American Ascent of an 8000-meter Peak

  • Climbs And Expeditions
  • Climb Year:
  • Publication Year: 1997

Cho Oyu, First African-American Ascent of an 8000-meter Peak. An American team led by Eric Simonson of Ashford, WA, summited Cho Oyu in two groups from the Tibet side on May 13 and 14. Summiters included Jean Ellis, the first African-American to ascend an 8000-meter peak. He had qualified for the 1980 Olympic team in the marathon, but with the boycott of the Moscow Games, had his hopes crushed. After his successful ascent of Cho Oyu, his words were, “After all these years of waiting, this is my gold medal.”

Eric Simonson

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