Now, we are a good way to conduct the entire “human” experiment, and the first phase-the age of the explorer-is ending. We have mapped every piece of land to a certain level of detail, and we are digging into the secrets of ancient civilizations. The untapped wilderness is being moved by more and more people, turning the wilderness into a landmark.
Every year, as more and more people flock to these landmarks, the difference between settlement and tame becomes more and more obvious. Sometimes the land fought back and people died. Sometimes people just fight each other and die. Either way, after 300,000 years of settlement, there are many dead people in many truly cool places. These are ten of the landmarks. Whether it is a natural wonder or a man-made wonder, in either case, there are a large number of dead bodies.
Every mountain is inevitably in Everest’s shadow—many of them literally. But in terms of human death, Mont Blanc stands far, far taller than its Himalayan sibling. Compared to Mont Blanc’s casualty toll, which is now estimated to be around 10,000, Everest’s 300 seem like child’s play. So why is Everest so notorious worldwide and not Mont Blanc? There are many reasons, but perhaps most ironically, because Blanc is easier. No one sets out for Everest without preparing—hopefully enough.
But Mont Blanc, one of the Alps and shared between France and Italy, is seen as more of a tourist destination than an existential challenge. A pleasant gondola ride carries would-be climbers the first 9,000 feet of the mountain’s 20,000 foot total. The rest is billed as just a “long walk” to the summit. This attracts some 25,000 hikers each year, and- on pure statistic inevitably alone- makes Mont Blanc the world’s deadliest mountain. Corpses are discovered there… frequently.