After a week of frigid morning temperatures, it should come as no surprise to St. Louis U. High students that the walk from the Science Center parking lot to the Danis Lobby has been designated by the International Mountaineering and Climbing Federation as a “Class 1 Peak,” putting it on par with summits such as Mt. Everest, K2, and Denali.

“Well, when you look at the criteria, this peak is absolutely in our top category,” said one IMCF spokesperson. “The temperature, the incline, and the wind all make for a very dangerous mountain that should only be attempted by highly skilled climbers.”

Throughout the week, this sentiment has been echoed by many students, who have braved the perilous trek from the warm safety of their cars through the arctic temperatures of the turnaround.

“I don’t recommend that to anyone,” said one anonymous junior. “That was my third time this week, and I was seconds away from hypothermia. I’m parking in the faculty lot from now on, I don’t care what Mr. Schulte says.”  

Many underclassmen have since dropped from their morning carpools, choosing the relative tropical paradise of their parents’ cars over the hazardous hike.

“I did that one morning, and I am never doing it again,” said a freshman who chose to remain anonymous. “As soon as my fingers unthawed, I called my mom and told her she was driving me from then on. No one should ever be subjugated to that walk ever again.”

With this new classification, many of the world’s finest mountaineers have traveled to the Backer Memorial to try their hand at attempting the turnaround. Though none have perished as of press time, not one of these elite climbers has been able to reach the elusive Danis Lobby.

Said noted mountaineer Kami Rita Sherpa, who has summited Mt. Everest a world-record 24 times, “I have gone up Everest more times than I can count, but that thing (pointing to turnaround with a whimper of fear) was easily the most difficult thing I’ve tried to go up. The physical demand was unparalleled, and the sharp wind cut right through my climbing gear. I would’ve died had I gone any further.”

Despite this clear risk to student safety, members of the administration have remained unwilling to address the issue. Our requests for comment on this matter were denied, but many have speculated that the administration is content to stay quiet in exchange for the sudden influx of tourism revenue brought in by the new mountaineering industry.

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