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Dipsy

Books on George Mallory

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I watched a documentary on the finding of George Mallory on Everest a few days ago and would like to find out more about his story. I've found this book, "Into the silence: the Great War, Mallory and the conquest of Everest" Have any Dosboders read it or recommend alternatives?

 

 

 

 

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5 minutes ago, Dipsy said:

I watched a documentary on the finding of George Mallory on Everest a few days ago and would like to find out more about his story. I've found this book, "Into the silence: the Great War, Mallory and the conquest of Everest" Have any Dosboders read it or recommend alternatives?

 

There's also another excellent documentary series on the early expeditions - think the So-Called BBC or Channel 4 made it - but I don't recall the name. If I think of it I will post it. But it goes into detail about the various different national expeditions competing in the years between WWI and WWII.

It also talked about the chap who filmed Mallory's expedition who, in all likelihood, was the last person 'below' to see him alive.

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There is also a rather good radio doc - again narrated by Blessed - which is one of those good old fashioned BBC Radio progs. You know the kind - lie in bed with the lights off, have it on the radio next to you and, in an instant, you are on Everest. I will have a look if it might still be on iplayer somewhere.

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Ah, the BFI has some films:

The 1992 expedition - silent film, but Mallory was on the expedtion. It was after this expedition that Mallory gave his now famous quote: "Because it's there." when asked why he wished to climb Everest.

https://player.bfi.org.uk/free/film/watch-climbing-mt-everest-1922-online

The 'Epic of Everest' is also up there but it is £3.50 to rent. This was later remade in a documentary that examined the making of this film and, of course, the expedition.

https://player.bfi.org.uk/rentals/film/watch-the-epic-of-everest-1924-online

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Thanks for all these. I've listened to Brian Blessed on the radio a couple of times talking about mountaineering - shall definitely take a look at the documentaries.

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Oddly enough I've just been reading a book called The Abominable by Dan Simmons. It's a novel about a group of climbers who undertake an Everest expedition in 1925 to find out what happened to Mallory. I had to give up halfway though as it was so dull and technical it was sending me to sleep. Might appeal to climbing enthusiasts though. 

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2 hours ago, Virgil Caine said:

Famous mountaineers are not necessarily great technical climbers

Mallory is an exception. I particularly like the story of Mallory's Pipe

https://theclutterbuck.wordpress.com/2011/03/30/the-twenty-eighth-of-march-2011-this-climb-is-totally-impossible/

From the link:

And, to finish, here’s my second-favourite mountaineering anecdote (everyone has a second-favourite mountaineering anecdote, don’t they?). It’s somewhat grim. The background is the deaths of a team of Indian climbers on Everest, and the successful climb to the summit of a Japanese team, who passed the dying Indians on their ascent.

[The actor] Brian Blessed… was making his third unsuccessful attempt to climb the mountain… He claimed that when the Japanese team held a victory party, he went into their tent, ripped down their national flag, threw it to the ground, and pissed on it. If this is true, then good for him.

:)

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4 hours ago, Virgil Caine said:

Famous mountaineers are not necessarily great technical climbers

Mallory is an exception. I particularly like the story of Mallory's Pipe

https://theclutterbuck.wordpress.com/2011/03/30/the-twenty-eighth-of-march-2011-this-climb-is-totally-impossible/

Interesting character.  He liked to have naked adventures with other young fit men. Perhaps a few have climbed Mallory’s Pipe:

S0001266.jpg

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I've ordered the book from my original post from my library. I shall look at for references to Mallory's Pipe!

I can't ever imagine wanting to climb any mountain let alone Everest but I am fascinated by those that do - particular from the era before tech made it a little easier.

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I think nakedness is hugely underrated. Though I hope they did not get sunburnt. I would have got badly sunburnt and probably a chill to boot.

Re the boring technical bit, why I love Brian Blessed's accounts and narratives so well as he throws bucketloads of passion into the subject.

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8 hours ago, ILikeCake said:

From the link:

And, to finish, here’s my second-favourite mountaineering anecdote (everyone has a second-favourite mountaineering anecdote, don’t they?). It’s somewhat grim. The background is the deaths of a team of Indian climbers on Everest, and the successful climb to the summit of a Japanese team, who passed the dying Indians on their ascent.

[The actor] Brian Blessed… was making his third unsuccessful attempt to climb the mountain… He claimed that when the Japanese team held a victory party, he went into their tent, ripped down their national flag, threw it to the ground, and pissed on it. If this is true, then good for him.

If i recall correctly from the fantastic book ‘the death zone’ about that very climb, he threatened to do that. 

 

Its true that blessed is obsessed with mallory and even owns one of his ice axes. He is a great character too, a proper english legend whose only let down is he is from the wrong side of the pennines

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For a great but disturbing account of the commercialization of Everest, read Dark Shadows Falling by Joe Simpson.  He goes into the details of the cunts who walk by another dying human in order to summit and get value from their $30k adventure.

https://books.google.ca/books/about/Dark_Shadows_Falling.html?id=xlItQfluWYcC&redir_esc=y&hl=en

Edited by Captain Cavey

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1 hour ago, Captain Cavey said:

For a great but disturbing account of the commercialization of Everest, read Dark Shadows Falling by Joe Simpson.  He goes into the details of the cunts who walk by another dying human in order to summit and get value from their $30k adventure.

https://books.google.ca/books/about/Dark_Shadows_Falling.html?id=xlItQfluWYcC&redir_esc=y&hl=en

I've never been able to understand the obsession with it but I feel that sort of behaviour does go a certain way to explaining what a lot of the type of people who do are all about.

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On 19/11/2017 at 16:28, Dipsy said:

I watched a documentary on the finding of George Mallory on Everest a few days ago and would like to find out more about his story. I've found this book, "Into the silence: the Great War, Mallory and the conquest of Everest" Have any Dosboders read it or recommend alternatives?

 

 

 

 

The movie Everest wasn't at all good IMO, think I switched it off before the end.

Considering only four decades later man was on the moon, without any casualties whatsoever, you would have though Mallory would have made it first go as well as taking a horse and snooker table with him.

 

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On 22/11/2017 at 03:12, SNACR said:

The movie Everest wasn't at all good IMO, think I switched it off before the end.

Considering only four decades later man was on the moon, without any casualties whatsoever, you would have though Mallory would have made it first go as well as taking a horse and snooker table with him.

 

9_9 Horses can't play snooker.

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I read the book that I mentioned in my original post. It was incredibly detailed and covered the geo-political machinations in the region in the 19th century, the surveying work that was done (for a non technical/engineer type I was amazed at how accurate the measurements were), the flora and fauna, the expeditions and WW1. I have to say the sections on the war were some of the best descriptions I've read in any book.  Highly recommended.

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On 22/11/2017 at 07:40, Panther said:

Everest is seen as a bit of a circus on ukclimbing, nobody is much impressed. Central Asian 7000ers are much more interesting

It's odd, I love being in the wilderness and also up mountains, but Everest, because of all the people and litter and tourism, just doesn't interest me at all. I'd rather be up somewhere half the height and totally alone with an untouched view and just my thoughts.

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12 minutes ago, Hopeful said:

It's odd, I love being in the wilderness and also up mountains, but Everest, because of all the people and litter and tourism, just doesn't interest me at all. I'd rather be up somewhere half the height and totally alone with an untouched view and just my thoughts.

What grates is the attitude, leaving people to die while you 'conquer' a mountain, the sponsored for 'charity', the convoluted youngest/oldest person 'records', the orientalist romanticising of Sherpas/Buddhism

Edited by Panther

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8 minutes ago, Panther said:

What grates is the attitude, leaving people to die while you 'conquer' a mountain, the sponsored for 'charity', the convoluted youngest/oldest person 'records'

Yes, that is another contrast I don't understand, when we compare our triumphant technological feats to those who conquered high peaks and high latitudes dressed in leather and wool while lugging plate cameras along to document it.

What amuses me most though are the Nepalese who run up and down several peaks in a day. Why would you even bother if you can't match that?

But that's my psyche, I guess. people often say "why don't you play the piano?" as I can quite well. But To me, I can't and so i don't. A pianist can read music and know what it sounds like, whereas I would have to play it, and so I'm a no pianist. the same as the difference between a cook and a chef. A chef can read a recipe to know what it tastes like, whereas a cook has to cook it. I've no interest in doing things that other people can do better.

Edited by Hopeful

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