From National Geographic comes an astounding series of photos of some of the earliest traversing of Mount Everest. The photos are great, but equally so are the descriptions. Check them all out after the jump.
Photograph by Reinhold Messner "I am nothing more than a single, narrow, gasping lung, floating over the mists and the summits," wrote Reinhold Messner after becoming the first person to reach the top of Mount Everest alone with no supplemental oxygen.
It's almost unimaginable how humans have managed to reach such extremes.
All captions via National Geographic. The rest of their section on early Everest climbers is excellent (especially the article on the differences in climbing gear from the first days to now).