Nepali Times
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Annapurna air†safari



We have come a long way since a Gypsy Moth piloted by LVS Blacker made the first ever fly-by of Mt Everest in 1933. Blacker survived an open cockpit and icy gale-force winds in his flimsy canvas-winged biplane to become the first person to look down at the top of the world.

But it took former UN Secretary General Dag HammarskjŲld to popularise what has come to be known as the 'Mountain Flight' when he was allowed by King Mahendra to take his unpressurised DC-3 to Khumbu and along the Annapurnas. HammarskjŲld, a keen photographer himself, took the stunning black-and-white pictures that appeared in the National Geographic of January 1961.

Today, there are up to 30 Everest-view flights a day during peak season from Kathmandu. Everest is still the big draw, but for the thrill of a lifetime and to really rub shoulders with the mountains, Avia Club Pokhara (http://aviaclubnepal.com/) offers sightseeing flights that fly not just past the mountains but amidst them. Avia offers flights in open cockpit ultralights or its tiny two-seater Aeroprakt, which can be chartered for a half-hour or one-hour sightseeing jaunt north of Pokhara.

Icelandic photographer and writer, Gudmundur Pall Olafsson, took two days of flying in an ultralight to come up with these spectacular photographs.

Read more about the flight on Kunda Dixit's blog EastWest. www.nepalitimes.com/blogs/kundadixit/

GUDMUNDUR PALL OLAFSSON
Annapurna II and IV, as seen from 12,000ft above the Mardi Khola, and the January 1961 National Geographic photo (top left) of the same mountain, taken by UN Secretary General Dag HammarskjŲld from a DC-3.

GUDMUNDUR PALL OLAFSSON
Annapurna II and IV, as seen from 12,000ft above the Mardi Khola, and the January 1961 National Geographic photo (top left) of the same mountain, taken by UN Secretary General Dag HammarskjŲld from a DC-3.

READ ALSO:
Ultra-marathon†- FROM ISSUE #497 (09 APRIL 2010 - 15 APRIL 2010)
http://www.nepalitimes.com/blogs/kundadixit/



1. bobbie
Think it'd be better to mention what time of the year the photographs were taken in 1961before comparing pics

2. kabulekanchho
All I can say is WOW, Nepal never ceases to amaze us. Let's save it for ourselves and the posterity.


3. Nep1
No wonder foreigners appreciate our land more than we do. For the non believers of global warming, look at those two pictures.

4. KiranL
What fabulous pictures. Congratulations. This is probably the next best thing to trekking (without the pain!). And what a perspective it offers on the incredible height of these mountains.

LATEST ISSUE
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(11 JAN 2013 - 17 JAN 2013)


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