• Anthony Oldfield

What Links Mount Everest With Wales??

Mount Everest was named after George Everest. Born in Crickhowell, Powys in 1790 he trained as an engineer and spent most of his career working in India on a detailed survey of the entire subcontinent. He served as Surveyor General of India and it was his successor, in 1857, who suggested the mountain be named after him. Everest disagreed with this honour, he believed when naming geographical sites it was best to use local names. However, since there were several local names for the mountain, the name Everest remained!

There is another name connection between Mount Everest and Wales. After the Great Trigonometrical Survey gave an official height to the mountain for the first time in 1856, it became something to conquer. In 1921, Britain organised their first reconnaissance team whose job it was to map the various features and possible routes for future climbers. George Mallory was a member of this team and while surveying, he came across a glacial valley and named it the Western Cwm. For anyone who knows their Welsh, cwm means valley. It is said that Mallory visited Snowdonia many times to climb and the name may reflect that.

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