Challenge of the Andes : The Conquest of Mount Huantsan by C.G. Egeler and T. de. Booy
New York : David McKay, 1955. First Edition. Hardcover. 203 pages ; photographic illustrations ; 21 cm. $4.50 dust jacket unclipped with foxing at verso. Pages are unmarked and binding is firm.
Challenge of the Andes
The Conquest of Mount Huantsan By C. G. EGELER in co-operation with T. DE BOOY
This is an adventure story: a hair-raising narrative of grit, daring, and endurance; a story of appalling dangers and exhilarating triumphs.
For decades the long, snow-capped range of the Cordillera Blanca has challenged the climbers of the world. The last supreme challenge was Huantsan: 21,000 feet of deep crevasses, of soft, treacherous snow, of knife edges and vertical walls and tremendous cornices of ice. It was the dream of two young Dutch geologists, Egeler and de Booy, that they should be the first to climb it.
Accompanied by Lionel Terray, laster French Alpinist and veteran of Annapurna, they reached Peru only to find that an American expedition was in the field before them. The news spurred them on, and with grim determination they overcame, one by one, the countless difficulties in their path: difficulties of acclimatization and organization; difficulties with guides and porters who were notably lacking in the qualities that have made the Sherpas legendary. But, at last, they were in a position launch the assault.
From there the story sweeps to its Tnendous climax. Undeterred by blizzards and frostbite, they struggled upward. For sixty hours they were trapped by hundred-mile winds. Once de Booy slipped head first down a cliff and was saved from death by a miracle. But the summit was reached, and they were the first to plant their flags in its untrodden snow.
Told with vigor, with engaging modesty and great good humor, this narrative is a gripping testimony to the courage of men who climb high mountains for the thrill of the challenge and the glory of the summit. To read it is to share every moment of peril, fortitude, and triumph. The authors provide a scientific appendix giving a summary of their researches in Andean geology.
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