True Summit

True Summit

What Really Happened on the Legendary Ascent of Annapurna

Book - 2000
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Baker & Taylor
Re-examines the world's first ascent of an 8000-meter peak by Maurice Herzog, and discovers what was originally hailed as a dramatic tale of courage, survival, and teamwork, was actually a much darker, more ambiguous journey.

Baker
& Taylor

Re-exammines the world's first ascent of an 8000-meter peak by Maurice Herzog, and discovers what was originally hailed as a dramatic tale of courage, survival, and teamwork, was actually a much darker, more ambiguous journey.

Simon and Schuster
The first conquest ever made of an 8,000-meter peak occurred in June 1950, when a French team reached the summit of Annapurna in the Himalaya. The achievement was a source of great pride in postwar France, and the expedition leader, Maurice Herzog, became a national hero. His account of the expedition, Annapurna, remains to this day the best-selling mountaineering book ever. But there is more to this story than Herzog's book reveals. Annapurna is one man's version of a triumph that came at a tragic cost, as Herzog lost all his fingers and toes to frostbite, his partner Louis Lachenal all his toes. The book describes a valiant effort by a unified, self-sacrificing team. The reality, however, was otherwise. The expedition was torn by dissent. The honors heaped on Herzog were not shared by the other climbers, some of whom deserved them as much as their leader. In truth, the triumph of the expedition was all the more remarkable, and the story of what really happened is far richer than Annapurna suggests. In place of Maurice Herzog's idealized version of the conquest, David Roberts offers in True Summit the real story of the Annapurna expedition. Drawing on original manuscripts and letters, some of them unpublished, as well as books recently published in France, he gives the three superb climbers who accompanied Herzog -- Lachenal, Lionel Terray, and Gaston Rébuffat -- long overdue recognition for their achievement. At the same time, he has interviewed Herzog, the lone survivor among the climbers, and puts his account of the climb in proper perspective. Annapurna fired the imaginations of millions of readers, including thousands of young climbers, the author among them. Roberts writes about the effect that the book had on him and other climbers he knew. He explains why it has taken nearly fifty years for the full story of this famous expedition to emerge and how the revelations will change forever the way we think about this victory in the mountains and the climbers who achieved it.

Publisher: New York : Simon & Schuster, 2000
ISBN: 9780684867571
0684867575
Branch Call Number: 796.522 Roberts 2000
Characteristics: 239 pages : illustrations map ; 25 cm

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vv9
Jul 04, 2015

David Roberts is one of my favorite adventure writers. In many books, you find references to Maurice Herzog's historic account of his climb of Annapurna in the Himalayas. The Herzog is a classic in mountain-climbing, but there is much dispute over the facts of the self-serving history he presents. "True Summit" is a retrospective of the climb, piecing together bits of knows history in an attempt to more reasonably speculate the truth of the summit attempt.
Roberts is a good writer, and puts great perspective on the man, the mountain and the sport. Highly recommended for anyone with an interest in high-altitude climbing.

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