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on July 11, 2012
This is a fairly short, breezy and somewhat banal read that at least fills an hour or two of a long international flight. There is somewhat more about the author's drinking exploits and banter with like-minded colleagues before and after his climbs than much in the way of technical climbing detail, but at least it moves along quickly and doesn't have the self-important faux-philosophy many mountaineering and alpine writers fall victim to. I was also interested to read what I think is the first (albeit muted) criticism of George Mallory (in reference to his reconnaissance of Everest and inability to find what the author considers obvious routes) who is virtually deified in most writing of this nature. It would have been interesting to read a more detailed account/opinion from the author on Mallory's preparation and reconnaissance for his Everest climbs and a bit less of the banter, but for the price I can't really complain.

Overall, OK for the price for the reader with an interest in mountaineering or the Himalayas looking for an inexpensive time-filler not requiring much in the way of critical thought.
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on February 6, 2015
The climber and adventurer Mark Horrell has found a clever way to make a buck and give us insights into his joyful and thoughtful view of the world and the harder places to reach in it. His style is light, self deprecating and funny, a rather British sense of humor because that is who he is. He has no illusions about the state of the world but is determined to squeeze adventure out of it anyway and we are privileged to get to ride his coattails for a dollar a book. Very much worth while. Start here: this is the first in the series and shows us a different view of mountain climbing and the "lower slopes" of the great mountain.
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on December 30, 2013
I've now read several of Mark Horrell's travel diaries (for lack of a better term) and have enjoyed all of them. His writing is funny, down to earth, and more geared to those of us who've never set foot on any part of the Himalayas (but maybe wish we had). He seems like the kind of guy you'd want to have a beer with and just listen to his mountain tales -- he doesn't put on airs, he doesn't try to whitewash the nastier parts of these trips (the lack of sanitary facilities being paramount among them), and he definitely gives a very realistic feeling of what it would be like to go on one of these treks.
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on May 19, 2013
The first "book" I read by Mark Horrell confused me a little, more or less dumping the reader into one of Mark's journeys into the high mountains without any real background but after reading two or more of these accounts you will get his style and just plain enjoy his descriptions of some distant destination, often lesser known that most mountaineering adventure spots. I would love to be have been able to live the adventure-filled life he has!
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on September 5, 2013
I have come to quite enjoy each of Mark Horrell's travel diaries, not only because of their details of what it's like to participate in a commercial trek or climb, but because of the self-effacing and witty style in which they're written. While I don't always get the British sense of humour, it's evident that some of the trek participants don't either! Entertaining!
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on January 5, 2013
This book gives a great perspective of how Himalayas, especially the Tibetian side is getting commercialized and the sacred Himalayas is becoming a commodity. The author writes a ball by ball commentary of getting on the Tibetian side of Everest, but mind it it is not on the climb to the Everest. It is basically a climb till the North Col, not the summit. But he describes very well the challenges on the Northern side, getting through Tibet to Everest, how things has changed around Tibet etc. It is a very good reading, if your expectation is set that you are not reading another Everest climb
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on April 28, 2013
Great insight into all things Everett, and Tibet. This isn't as good as Horrell's account of his actual climb of Everett, but given the price, just get both and read this as background for the other! I do really appreciate the level of nitty gritty detail in these memoirs, all the way down to bodily functions at altitude. This is something that most mountaineering books skip, and I always wondered at these matters. Thanks, mark, for clearing up these mysteries!
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on April 20, 2015
I really enjoyed this ebook, as it showed the human side of any adventure in life - the jokes, irritations, and day to day experiences, interspersed with the realities of the trek, such as the exhaustion and the condition of his poor face and lips. Thank you, Mark - I could easily imagine I was on the trek, too!
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on February 8, 2013
After reading "In Thin Air" by Krakauer and "Nanda Devi" by Roskelley, this book was a disappointing read. It took most of the book just to get to base camp. The reader questions how serious these climbers were. They seemed more interested in drinking tea and sharing "bathroom" humor.
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on July 19, 2013
I'm a huge fan of any adventure story, and stories of climbs are no1 in my book. In this particular story, it's an easy and fun read that just once again enforces my desire to at least visit base camp. I would recommend this for anyone interested in the genre (I read while waiting for flights).
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