Doc stumbles on Hillary expedition boat at Manas, the craft was donated the park for wildlife conservation after the trip
Jorhat, June 15: Thirty-seven years ago the boat had hogged headlines along with six others of its class. Today, it lies abandoned and all but buried under an overgrowth of grass and shrubs at Manas National Park, its glorious adventurous past forgotten.
But there is hope yet for the jet boat, which was part of the Ocean to Sky expedition led by Sir Edmund Hillary in 1977, with a nature lover stumbling upon it and taking up its cause.....
The Indo-New Zealand expedition, comprising 16 members with Sir Edmund Hillary as the leader, took up the Ocean to Sky expedition in 1977.
They used New Zealand-made Hamilton jet boats to travel from Ganga Sagar, the mouth of the river near Calcutta, to high up into the Himalayas over three months. The party’s subsequent climb to an unnamed peak, which they called Akash Parbat (Sky Peak), was achieved without Hillary, who succumbed to altitude sickness. Six Indians were also in the team. The seven specially designed jet boats used in the expedition had 16ft-long reinforced fibreglass hulls and were fitted with 250 horsepower V8 automobile engines capable of moving at high speed even in shallow waters. After the expedition, these jet boats were donated for wildlife conservation, and Manas received one of these priceless treasures.
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