3 top stories from home and away
By P.M. Fadden
WORLD VIEW – Everest Loses Famous Feature
BBC World Service shared mountaineers’ confirmation last week that towering Mount Everest has lost its topmost technical, pre-summit feature The Hillary Step.
Named for Sir Edmund Hillary, who was first scaled it with Tenzing Norgay in 1953, The Step is believed victim of Nepal’s violent 2015 earthquake.
A reduced 2017 snowpack revealed the near-vertical 12m (39 ft.) rocky outcrop on the mountain’s southeast ridge had gone and experts fear the ensuing ‘bottleneck’ summit approach to result in an overall increased risk factor.
The routes up Everest from Nepal and Tibet are already very hazardous, claiming four climber’s lives last Sunday alone.
NATIONWIDE – Final Bow for Ringling Bros.
Capping a legacy that stretches back to the legendary 19th century showman P.T. Barnum, Ringling Brothers with Barnum & Bailey circus bid farewell at a series of shows last weekend at newly refurbished Nassau Coliseum in Uniondale on New York’s Long Island report Reuters World News.
A worldwide audience will watch Sunday evening via a live stream on the Ringling website the final performance of the “Greatest Show on Earth” after nearly 150 years.
The finale, announced by parent company Feld Entertainment Inc in January, comes a year after bowing to animal rights activist pressure regarding using elephants in its performances. According to reports, the phase out reduced attendance drastically, causing the circus to fold up its tents.
FRONTIER FOCUS – AK Accepts Real ID
Starting July 10, Alaska driver’s licenses and ID cards will no longer be enough to enter gated federal facilities.
The restriction reflects Gov. Walker’s signing of House Bill 16 on Friday, allowing the state to begin the process of issuing REAL ID compliant forms of identification. The REAL ID will be nearly identical to the current Alaska driver’s license, but with unique marking to identify it.
KTVA 11 Alaska states no one is required to get a REAL ID and residents are largely unaffected. The DMV will continue to issue state driver’s licenses and IDs, yet it is by estimated 2020 REAL ID’s will be required to enter military facilities as well as fly, even domestically.