Jan 28, 2011

Everest and climbing

I've been tearing through this Jon Krakauer book: Into Thin Air. It's a first person account of the 1996 disaster on Everest in which eight climbers died when caught in a sudden storm. The idea of climbing Mt.Everest is extremely interesting to me. It's actually exhilarating to read about the close calls, extreme environment and physiological demands put on the climbers. Reading it has sent me to the internet to research the areas Krakaur describes; the Khumbu Icefall, the Hillary Step and the Balcony on the South Col route for example. It's great to be able to pull up images and topographical maps of the areas I am reading about. I've also watched a few documentaries about Everest and some interviews with medical staff from the expedition, though I'm saving the movie based on Krakaur's book until I've finished reading.

I'm excited to get to the climbing gym tonight and take on a few bouldering problems. I'll meet my friend Chris at Grand Central Terminal and we'll head to Brooklyn for our weekly gravity games. Hopefully they have changed the holds on some of the walls to provide new challenges. Although, I hope that my new favorite 5.9+ route; the "suspended obelisk" is still there. It's a great confidence booster to be able to pull yourself up off the ground for the start of this climb.

4 comments:

danaceau said...

That was, I think a two day book for me. I was reading it on vacation and, as you said, tore through it.

Chris Kreuter said...

Haven't read the book, but the movie wasn't too bad - it's more documentary than drama, but it gives you a lot of detail on the human elements that caused the disaster.

Michael O'Hara said...

Dan:

Yep, really enjoying this book. Now I'm on the hunt for more books about climbing/Everest.

Michael O'Hara said...

Chris:

You'd dig this book. I'll have to toss it your way when I'm finished. Good climbing with you tonight!