, January 26, 2008
(view all comments by Jeane)
In 1978, the American Women's Himalayan Expedition attempted the summit of Annapurna I, the world's tenth highest peak. At the time, no woman had ever climbed a 8,000 meter peak. No American team had previous climbed Annapurna.
I really had no idea what mountain climbing is like before reading this book. The amount of planning, logistics, manpower and supplies was staggering. The ten-women team had to overcome male prejudice, disagreements amongst themselves, fatigue, frostbite, altitude sickness, and disgruntled porters. The colorful character of Nepal contrasted sharply with the austere beauty and danger up on the mountain. Blum makes it clear that mountain-climbing is not just about the challenge, thrills or proving that women can do it. There is a serenity and peace to be found at high altitudes- they climb because they love to do so, in spite of how difficult it is.