Climbing the Great Pyramid
We were talking last week about bucket lists, and I pointed out that visiting the pyramids in Egypt is high up on my personal bucket list, but due to safety concerns, I've indefinitely postponed checking that item off.
I just want to see the pyramids and the Sphinx, and maybe touch them with my own two hands. I have no plan to do what 18-year-old Andrej Ciesielski, a German tourist, pulled off last week: a climb of the Great Pyramid.
You might be thinking, "I didn't know that they let you climb it!" And, you'd be right, if you're thinking about the legalities involved.
From USA Today:
The German tourist, who writes about the experience on his blog, says he first visited Cairo before hiring a taxi to take him to Giza. Though climbing the oldest and largest of the three pyramids could result in a three-year jail term, or something far worse if he lost his footing, "I thought the photos would be worth it," Ciesielski says, per the Telegraph.
Armed with a GoPro camera, "I just started climbing." He took the first few steps quickly "so nobody would follow me and take me down," he tells Business Insider. It wasn't until he was about halfway up the 455-foot structure that police finally spotted him.
So, of course, he headed right back down to face the music, right? Nope.
Ciesielski kept climbing and reached the top in about eight minutes. Spectacular images on his blog show the surrounding pyramids and ancient dwellings. The view "was really, really amazing," he says. Ciesielski took his time with his descent for safety reasons and was back on the ground in about 20 minutes, he writes. He was then taken into police custody.
"At first, they wanted to take me to the German embassy, but after a while I was released without anything further happening," Ciesielski says. Officers declined to press charges on the condition that they delete all photographic evidence of his climb. Unbeknownst to police, Ciesielski had software that allowed him to recover the deleted images.
"Some people were really angry but I don't care," Ciesielski says of his climb. "I didn't destroy anything. I didn't hurt anyone."
About that footage Ciesielski supposedly deleted? It's pretty cool:
It turns out this guy has a habit of climbing things that will get you into trouble. Being afraid of heights, the video of the pyramid climb didn't bother me. Ciesielski's recent visit to Shanghai, and the climb that he recorded there...yeah...this one was a little tough for me to watch: