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Mountaineering & Exploration

Ghosts of Everest : The Search for Mallory & Irvine
Jochen Hemmleb, Larry A. Johnson, Eric R. Simonson
Hardcover. Published by The Mountaineers (Oct 1999)

A fascinating look at Mallory's last expedition, and the very recent team that found his body on Everest. Great photos, both modern and archival. A MUST for Everestphiles.

Last Climb: The Legendary Everest Expeditions of George Mallory
David Breashears, Audrey Salkeld
Hardcover. Published by National Geographic Society (Oct 1999)

Another recent addition to the essential Everest Library. Beautiful photgraphs worthy of a National Geo edition; many of them were taken by Mallory! This volume spends more time examining Mallory's life and history of Everest attempts, but also covers the discovery of his body this Spring.

book cover Into Thin Air
A Personal Account of the Mount Everest Disaster
Jon Krakauer
Hardcover. Published by Villard Books (1997)

No doubt you've heard more than you need to about this book. Suffice it to say that it is very well written, and a gripping read. If you are interested in what happened on Everest in the Spring of 1996, you should read this book and the alternative account by Anatoli Boukreev.

book cover The Climb
Tragic Ambitions on Everest
Anatoli Boukreev and G. Weston DeWalt
Hardcover. Published by St Martins Press (1997)

A somewhat different view of how things went down on Everest in the Spring of 1996. If you have read Krakauer's account, you owe it to yourself to read this one for a different view of the events.

book cover Everest
Mountain Without Mercy
Broughton Coburn, Tim Cahill (Contributor), IMAX photographs by David Breashears
Hardcover. Published by Random House (1997)

This is a gorgeously-produced oversize book about the making of the IMAX film Everest. The IMAX team, lead by David Breashears, happened to be on the mountain during the Everest disaster in the Spring of 1996. The book recounts the events surrounding that disaster, and also includes detailed information about the history of climbing Everest, the people and ecology of Nepal, and Buddhism. All of this is illustrated with stunningly beautiful photography.

book cover Everest
The Best Writing and Pictures from Seventy Years of Human Endeavor
Peter Gillman (Editor), Foreword by Sir Edmund Hillary
Hardcover. Published by Little, Brown & Company, Boston (1993)
Alas, this title is out of print, but if you place an order we may be able to find you a used copy within 1-3 months.

If you have a collection of Everest books, like I do, this is one that you should search out. It is a beautifully printed oversized hardcover that covers the history of Everest climbing in great detail. Many chapters are authored by climbers and give gripping first-person authority to the history. The chapter by Sir Edmund Hillary, and the essay by Tenzing Norgay provide fascinating insight into the first ascent.

book cover Everest the West Ridge
Thomas F. Hornbein
Hardcover. Published by Mountaineers Books (1980)

The classic account of the 1963 American first ascent of Everest by the West Ridge, and the stunning traverse of Everest by Hornbein and Unsoeld, copiously illustrated with great photographs.

book cover K2: Triumph and Tragedy
Jim Curran
Paperback Reprint Edition . Published by Houghton Mifflin (1997)

Ten years before the disaster on Everest in the Spring of 1996, there was the terrible summer of 1986 on K2; out of nine expeditions on the mountain, 27 climbers summited and 13 died. Curran was at base camp through the entire summer, and lays out the story of the successful new routes, the first woman to climb K2, and the tragic deaths.

Over The Himalaya
Koichiro Ohmori
Hardcover. Published by Cloudcap Press (1994)

Spectacular, amazingly detailed aerial photos of the major peaks in the Himalaya. The quality is so good that in some cases you can pick out the climbing routes.

book cover A Most Hostile Mountain
Re-Creating the Duke of Abruzzi's Historic Expedition on Mount St. Elias
by Jonathan Waterman
Hardcover. Published by Henry Holt & Company (1997)

Jon Waterman sets out to re-enact the Duke of Abruzzi's famed climb of Mount St. Elias in Alaska a century earlier. An engaging narrative about climbing the mountain by fair means.

The Seven Mountain Travel Books
Snow on the Equator, The Ascent of Nanda Devi, When Men and Mountains Meet, Everest 1938, Two Mountains and a River, China to Chitral, Nepal Himalaya
H.W. Tillman
Hardcover. Published by Mountaineers (1997)
Back in print!!!

This is a great collection of some of the all-time classics of mountaineering literature. Not just an explorer and mountaineer, Tillman is a wonderful storyteller. This is a book to travel with (as I have), and to savor.

book cover My Journey to Lhasa
Alexandra David-Neel
Paperback Reprint Edition , 310 pages. Beacon Press (1993)

In any time, Alexandra David-Neel would have been considered an extraordinary woman, but in the Victorian era, she was truly exceptional. Born in 1868, David-Neel eschewed the dances, dinners, and formal marriages common to women of her era and social standing in order to indulge her fierce independence and insatiable intellectual curiosity. Her interest in comparative religions dated back to early childhood; even as a student in a Catholic convent school, she kept statues of both Christ and the Buddha in her room. She made her first trip to Asia in 1891, then supported herself as a light-opera singer and journalist before marrying a seemingly conventional man, Philip Neel. Fortunately for both Alexandra David-Neel and for posterity, Philip was less stodgy than his position as a well-off engineer might imply; though he did not accompany her, he supported his wife's explorations and even acted as her literary agent when she began to write about the places she visited. Alexandra and Philip remained the closest of friends until his death in 1941.

David-Neel spent years traveling in India and China, but perhaps her most daring adventure was the trip to Tibet's forbidden city of Lhasa. She was 55 years old at the time, fluent in Tibetan and well versed in both Sanskrit and Buddhism. Disguised as a Tibetan, she spent four treacherous months on the road before finally becoming the first European woman ever to enter Lhasa. "My Journey to Lhasa" is David-Neel's own account of her astounding journey, one fraught with hardship and danger. It is both a chronicle of a bygone time and a testimonial to a remarkable human.

Tibetan Portrait: The Power of Compassion
Phil Borges (Photographer), Dalai Lama, Bstan-Dzin-Rgya-Mtsho
Hardcover. Published by Rizzoli Bookstore. 96 pages (1996)

This book is filled with wonderful, rich, human portraits of Tibetans. They tell their stories with simple words and overwhelming faces. Check it out.

My Tibet
Dalai Lama, Galen Rowell
Hardcover. Published by Univ California Press. 162 pages (1990)

The Dalai Lama's vision of Tibet, with stunning photos by Galen Rowell.

Full Tilt: Ireland to India With a Bicycle
Dervla Murphy
Paperback. Published by Overlook Press (1987)

In the early 1960s Dervla Murphy rode her bicycle from Ireland to India


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Copyright© Thomas E. Dietz, MD
Emergency & Wilderness Medicine

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