Sir Edmund Hillary: We reached the south summit of Everest, which is 28,700 feet, and then we looked along the summit ridge, which is quite an impressive narrow ridge. It’s corniced on one side, which is overhanging with snow and ice, so you can’t keep on the crest of the ridge. We had to keep down on the steep lefthand side on the snow and ice. But halfway along the ridge there’s a rock step. It’s about 40 feet high, and I cut steps along the side of the ridge until we reached the bottom of the rock step. And looking up at the rock step at 29,000 feet, it really did look extremely difficult to overcome. But then I noticed that out to the right of the rock step, where the ice was plastered onto the wall, there was a crack maybe two feet wide, but just large enough to crawl inside, where the ice was breaking away from the rock. I sort of crawled inside that, and then I wriggled and jammed my way up the crack with rock on one side and ice on the other and then finally pulled myself out onto the top of the rock step. That was really the first moment during the whole of the expedition that I was confident that we were going to get to the top. But overcoming that rock step, which we knew existed — we had seen it from far below — made me feel the confidence that we were going to succeed. And sure enough, on we went, and we ultimately reached the top. Funnily enough, that step is now called the Hillary Step. Any climber who climbs Everest from that south side, at some stage has to go up the Hillary Step.