Friday, February 16, 2007

Badass of the Week

Truly, this is one of the most incredible stories I've ever seen:
CANBERRA, Australia - A German paraglider was encased in ice and blacked out after being sucked into a tornado-like thunderstorm in Australia and carried to a height greater than Mount Everest. She survived.

...the 2005 World Cup winner was lifted 32,612 feet (9,940 meters) above sea level by the storm near Manilla in New South Wales state while preparing for the tenth FAI World Paragliding Championships next week.

...Wisnerska, a member of the German team, had been carried to a height greater than the 29,035-foot Mt Everest -- an area known to mountaineers as the death zone for its extreme cold -- in just 10 minutes and was rendered unconscious for almost an hour.

She encountered hailstones the size of oranges, and the temperature plummeted to minus 58 Fahrenheit.

“There’s no oxygen. She could have suffered brain damage. But she came to again at a height of 6,900 meters with ice all over her body and slowly descended herself,” said Godfrey Wenness, one of Australia’s most experienced paraglider pilots.

Wisnerska was admitted to hospital with severe frostbite and blistering to her face and ears, but has since been released.

32,000 feet in 10 minutes!

Read all about it here.

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