7 Things You'll Need to Pack Before You Hunt the Yeti


Scientists say that the Yeti is just a legend—but that hasn’t stopped adventurous cryptozoologists from jetting off to the Himalayan Mountain region in search of the beast, which has been described as a gigantic humanoid covered in shaggy fur. If you’re looking to join them, here’s some equipment you will need to stash in your rucksack before booking a plane ticket to Asia.


The Yeti is reportedly unafraid of weapons, but a torch will keep him at bay. (Plus, many people believe the creature to be peaceful, so you want to avoid hurting him unless proven otherwise.) It’s also handy to have an additional light source on hand during an outdoor expedition—especially one that keeps you warm while hiking the snowy peaks bordering Nepal, India, and Tibet.


The Sherpa people say that the Yeti will only show itself to those who believe in its existence. If you’re still on the fence (or simply want to capture it lumbering unaware through its natural habitat), bring along a camera trap—a remotely activated camera that’s activated by infrared sensor when it detects body heat or movement. Scientists hide them in remote areas to obtain videos and pictures of rare species. Simply leave the camera trap outside, wait a few days (or even weeks), and review the footage. If you spot a muscular, 6-foot-tall creature covered in dark grey or reddish-brown hair, congratulations! You’ve spotted the Yeti—or discovered a new bear species.


The Nepalese believe that Yetis eat yaks or sheep, so the creature might be lured to your campsite if you leave out some meat. And since you’ll be burning plenty of calories while trekking through the snow, make sure to pack hearty nonperishables like energy bars, trail mix, dried fruit, nuts, and cheese. And don’t forget sports drinks, which will replenish your energy levels with minerals and electrolytes.


Throughout the decades, several explorers claim to have spotted mysterious sets of footprints that appeared to have been made by an ape-like creature. If you encounter any tracks in the snow, whip out a measuring tape and record their size. If they’re anywhere between 12 and 14 inches long, they could be the Yeti’s.


Many people believe that the Yeti spends time in mountain caves. If you’re going to engage in an impromptu spelunking adventure, be sure to stay safe by packing a helmet with a headlamp, along with other forms of protection.


According to Nepalese folklore, the Yeti is nocturnal, which means you’re not going to spot him sitting top of a mountain, basking in a sunbeam mid-day. Your best bet is to camp out and search for him at night. Pack a mountaineering tent (also known as a"4-season tent") to shield you from altitude chill, as well as a zero-degree down sleeping bag, as temperatures can dip well below zero after dark.


The rules may be slightly different today, but during the late 1950s, American diplomats in Kathmandu took rumors about the Yeti seriously enough to issue official regulations for its capture. (They were likely also looking to make easy money off hunters.) If you wanted to pursue the mythical beast, you had to pay the Nepalese government $77 for a permit. You were also prohibited from killing any Yetis (although exceptions were made for instances of self defense). Photographs were fine, but all images—and captured ape-men—had to be handed over to Nepali officials. Finally, you were not allowed to alert the media about your discovery. So before you go off searching for the Yeti, make sure to check in with national government figures to see if you need to buy a license or fill out any permission-granting paperwork.

Join the search for the Yeti with host Josh Gates on Expedition Unknown: Hunt for the Yeti, tonight at 9/8c only on Travel Channel.

Brian Bahr/Allsport/Getty Images
Big Questions
Did Wilt Chamberlain Really Sleep With 20,000 Women?
Brian Bahr/Allsport/Getty Images
Brian Bahr/Allsport/Getty Images

At 7'1", Wilt Chamberlain may have been the most dominating and amazing basketball player of all time. In his legendary career, Chamberlain scored 31,419 points, including the unbelievable time he actually scored 100 points in one game. He holds dozens of unbreakable basketball records.

In addition to his accomplishments on the court, Chamberlain also authored four books. None of the others created nearly the stir and controversy as his 1991 book, A View From Above. In it, the basketball great claimed to have slept with 20,000 different women during his life.

A media firestorm erupted, and Chamberlain was attacked from all sides. The country was at the height of the AIDS crisis, and activists criticized Wilt for his promiscuity. He also came under fire in African-American circles for promoting black racial stereotypes. And feminists resented his blatant sexism for using women in such a manner.

To Wilt's credit (I guess), he never backed down from his claim, never said he was just "bragging" or "stretching the truth." He simply stated: "I was just laying it out there for people who were curious."

Wilt was emphatic that he never went to bed with a married woman. "I was just doing what was natural—chasing good-looking ladies, whoever they were and wherever they were." But could he really sleep with 20,000 different women? Let's analyze it.


If Wilt started at the age of 15, from then up to the age of 55 (when the book was published) he would have had 40 years to sleep with 20,000 women, or 500 different women a year—easy math.

That works out to roughly 1.4 women a day.

According to close friends, Wilt loved threesomes. According to legend, he was intimate with 23 different women on one 10-day road trip. Wilt was also a lifelong insomniac, sometimes just not sleeping at all. He probably would take a woman to bed any time he couldn't fall asleep.

But the time factor is an interesting point. A close childhood friend, Tom Fitzhugh, said, "I don't remember him having a date. He was probably a virgin when he left high school." So let us assume Wilt really started around the age of 18, which ups the average to 1.5 women per day for 37 years.

Additionally, he did have a six-month schedule, for 14 seasons, of playing professional basketball. That's 82 games a season, not including playoffs, exhibitions, practices, and travel time.

The fact that he said 20,000 different women also leaves little time for repeats, or love. And what about sickness? Everyone gets sick once in a while, which would have cost Wilt precious time during those 37 to 40 sexually active years.

But most incredibly, even with those reported 20,000 sexual liaisons, Wilt is not known to have contracted any serious sexually transmitted diseases. Nor was there ever a woman who came forward with an unplanned pregnancy, a "little Wilt," or a paternity suit.

And what about turndowns? Every guy in human history has been turned down by a woman at some point. One can only wonder at Wilt's rejections ... probably extremely few, to manage that 20,000 record.

In a 1999 interview, shortly before he died, Wilt made the following revealing statement:

"Having a thousand different ladies is pretty cool, I've learned in my life. I've (also) found out that having one woman a thousand different times is more satisfying."

So perhaps he made time for repeats after all.

Chamberlain died of heart failure in 1999 in Bel-Air, California, at the age of 63.

As a sidebar, Wilt was a huge hero of mine—my supreme basketball hero, as a kid and to this day. I wore Wilt's number 13 on my jersey as I ineptly played for my synagogue's basketball team. (I scored 18 points in 18 games, a nifty 1.0 scoring average.)

Many years later, I met "Wilt the Stilt" at a book-signing for the infamous A View From Above, and I even got to shake his hand. It was, far and away, the biggest hand I have ever seen (or shaken). He didn't just shake my hand—he engulfed it!

Justin Sullivan/Getty Images
9 Victims of King Tut's Curse (And One Who Should Have Been)
Justin Sullivan/Getty Images
Justin Sullivan/Getty Images

When King Tutankhamen's tomb was discovered on November 26, 1922—after more than 3000 years of uninterrupted repose—some believed the pharaoh unleashed a powerful curse of death and destruction upon all who dared disturb his eternal slumber.

Like any urban legend or media sensation, the alleged curse grew to epic proportions over the years. Here are nine people who might make you believe in such things, and one who should have been a direct recipient of Tut's wrath but got off with nary a scratch.


The man who financed the excavation of King Tut's tomb was the first to succumb to the supposed curse. Lord Carnarvon accidentally tore open a mosquito bite while shaving and ended up dying of blood poisoning shortly thereafter. This occurred a few months after the tomb was opened and a mere six weeks after the press started reporting on the "mummy's curse," which was thought to afflict anyone associated with disturbing the mummy. Legend has it that when Lord Carnarvon died, all of the lights in his house mysteriously went out.


Howard Carter, the archaeologist who discovered the tomb, gave a paperweight to his friend Ingham as a gift. The paperweight appropriately (or perhaps quite inappropriately) consisted of a mummified hand wearing a bracelet that was supposedly inscribed with the phrase, "cursed be he who moves my body." Ingham's house burned to the ground not long after receiving the gift, and when he tried to rebuild, it was hit with a flood.


Gould was a wealthy American financier and railroad executive who visited the tomb of Tutankhamen in 1923 and fell sick almost immediately afterward. He never really recovered and died of a pneumonia a few months later.


It's said that Lord Carnarvon's half-brother suffered from King Tut's curse merely by being related to him. Aubrey Herbert was born with a degenerative eye condition and became totally blind late in life. A doctor suggested that his rotten, infected teeth were somehow interfering with his vision, and Herbert had every single tooth pulled from his head in an effort to regain his sight. It didn't work. He did, however, die of sepsis as a result of the surgery, just five months after the death of his supposedly cursed brother.


Evelyn-White, a British archaeologist, visited Tut's tomb and may have helped excavate the site. After seeing death sweep over about two dozen of his fellow excavators by 1924, Evelyn-White hung himself—but not before writing, allegedly in his own blood, "I have succumbed to a curse which forces me to disappear."


American Egyptologist Aaron Ember was friends with many of the people who were present when the tomb was opened, including Lord Carnarvon. Ember died in 1926, when his house in Baltimore burned down less than an hour after he and his wife hosted a dinner party. He could have exited safely, but his wife encouraged him to save a manuscript he had been working on while she fetched their son. Sadly, they and the family's maid died in the catastrophe. The name of Ember's manuscript? The Egyptian Book of the Dead.


Bethell was Lord Carnarvon's secretary and the first person behind Carter to enter the tomb. He died in 1929 under suspicious circumstances: He was found smothered in his room at an elite London gentlemen's club. Soon after, the Nottingham Post mused, "The suggestion that the Hon. Richard Bethell had come under the ‘curse’ was raised last year, when there was a series of mysterious fires at it home, where some of the priceless finds from Tutankhamen’s tomb were stored." No evidence of a connection between artifacts and Bethell's death was established, though.


Proving that you didn't have to be one of the excavators or expedition backers to fall victim to the curse, Reid, a radiologist, merely x-rayed Tut before the mummy was given to museum authorities. He got sick the next day and was dead three days later.


Breasted, another famous Egyptologist of the day, was working with Carter when the tomb was opened. Shortly thereafter, he allegedly returned home to find that his pet canary had been eaten by a cobra—and the cobra was still occupying the cage. Since the cobra is a symbol of the Egyptian monarchy, and a motif that kings wore on their headdresses to represent protection, this was a rather ominous sign. Breasted himself didn't die until 1935, although his death did occur immediately after a trip to Egypt.


Carter never had a mysterious, inexplicable illness and his house never fell victim to any fiery disasters. He died of lymphoma at the age of 64. His tombstone even says, "May your spirit live, may you spend millions of years, you who love Thebes, sitting with your face to the north wind, your eyes beholding happiness." Perhaps the pharaohs saw fit to spare him from their curse.


More from mental floss studios