By Maurice Isserman, Stewart Weaver
The 1st profitable ascent of Mount Everest in 1953 by means of Sir Edmund Hillary and his Sherpa teammate Tenzing Norgay is a well-known saga, yet much less popular are the stories of many different adventurers who additionally got here to check their talents and braveness opposed to the world’s optimum and most deadly mountains. during this full of life and generously illustrated booklet, historians Maurice Isserman and Stewart Weaver current the 1st entire background of Himalayan hiking in fifty years. they provide special, unique bills of the main major climbs because the Eighteen Nineties, and so they compellingly evoke the social and cultural worlds that gave upward thrust to these expeditions.
The booklet recounts the adventures of such figures as Martin Conway, who led the 1st real Himalayan hiking day trip in 1892; Fanny Bullock Workman, the pioneer explorer of the Karakoram diversity; George Mallory, the romantic martyr of Mount Everest repute; Charlie Houston, who led American expeditions to K2 within the Thirties and Fifties; Ang Tharkay, the mythical Sherpa, etc. all through, the authors talk about the results of political and social switch at the global of mountain climbing, and so they supply a penetrating research of a tradition that after emphasised teamwork and fellowship between climbers, yet now has been eclipsed via a scramble for person popularity and glory.
Boardman Tasker Prize Nominee for Mountain Literature (2008)
Read Online or Download Fallen Giants: A History of Himalayan Mountaineering from the Age of Empire to the Age of Extremes PDF
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Additional info for Fallen Giants: A History of Himalayan Mountaineering from the Age of Empire to the Age of Extremes
Nain Singh crossed the Mana Pass out of Badrinath and undertook the ﬁrst systematic survey of western Tibet. In , with yet another cousin, Kishen Singh (alias A. ), he joined T. Douglas Forsyth’s famous mission to Kashgar, an elaborate aﬀair that featured six military oﬃcers, several scientists, four Indian surveyors, porters, and pack animals. The purpose of the Forsyth mission, headed by the commissioner of the Punjab, was to establish friendly diplomatic and commercial relations with Yakub Beg, the recently self-proclaimed emir of Kashgaria, the southern, predominantly Muslim half of Chinese Turkestan.
Over the next decade, virgin summits fell, most of them to British climbers whose energy and possessive zeal reﬂected both their middle-class origins and their sense of national entitlement. Leslie Stephen, John Ball, John Tyndall, A. W. ” Being English, they soon felt the need for a social forum in which to share and discuss their elevated experiences, and December saw the founding in London of the world’s ﬁrst Alpine Club. Peaks, Passes, and Glaciers, the Alpine Club’s ﬁrst anthology of members’ climbing narratives, appeared to great public acclaim in ; the ﬁrst number of the Alpine Journal, the world’s ﬁrst periodical record of mountain adventure (and scientiﬁc observation, the subtitle half-heartedly promised), was published four years later in .
Nineteen years later his countryman Josias Simler, also of the University of Zurich, published Vallesiae Descriptio et de Alpibus Commentarius (), the ﬁrst known mountaineering manual. ³⁷ Now a sprawling tourist metropolis and the unrivalled mountain-climbing capital of Europe, Chamonix was in a remote and backward farming village of no interest to anyone but a few crystal collectors and chamois hunters. The fantastic tangle of mountains and glaciers that dominated its surrounding valley was generally reviled as ugly and fearsome, the icy realm of witches and dragons.