Buried in the Sky: The Extraordinary Story of the Sherpa Climbers on K2's Deadliest Day

Buried in the Sky The Extraordinary Story of the Sherpa Climbers on K s Deadliest Day When Edmund Hillary first conquered Mt Everest Sherpa Tenzing Norgay was at his side Indeed for as long as Westerners have been climbing the Himalaya Sherpas have been the unsung heroes in the back

  • Title: Buried in the Sky: The Extraordinary Story of the Sherpa Climbers on K2's Deadliest Day
  • Author: Peter Zuckerman Amanda Padoan
  • ISBN: 9780393079883
  • Page: 314
  • Format: Hardcover
  • When Edmund Hillary first conquered Mt Everest, Sherpa Tenzing Norgay was at his side Indeed, for as long as Westerners have been climbing the Himalaya, Sherpas have been the unsung heroes in the background In August 2008, when eleven climbers lost their lives on K2, the world s most dangerous peak, two Sherpas survived They had emerged from poverty and political turmoWhen Edmund Hillary first conquered Mt Everest, Sherpa Tenzing Norgay was at his side Indeed, for as long as Westerners have been climbing the Himalaya, Sherpas have been the unsung heroes in the background In August 2008, when eleven climbers lost their lives on K2, the world s most dangerous peak, two Sherpas survived They had emerged from poverty and political turmoil to become two of the most skillful mountaineers on earth Based on unprecedented access and interviews, Buried in the Sky reveals their astonishing story for the first time.Peter Zuckerman and Amanda Padoan explore the intersecting lives of Chhiring Dorje Sherpa and Pasang Lama, following them from their villages high in the Himalaya to the slums of Kathmandu, across the glaciers of Pakistan to K2 Base Camp When disaster strikes in the Death Zone, Chhiring finds Pasang stranded on an ice wall, without an axe, waiting to die The rescue that follows has become the stuff of mountaineering legend.At once a gripping, white knuckled adventure and a rich exploration of Sherpa customs and culture, Buried in the Sky re creates one of the most dramatic catastrophes in alpine history from a fascinating new perspective.

    One thought on “Buried in the Sky: The Extraordinary Story of the Sherpa Climbers on K2's Deadliest Day”

    1. I read Into Thin Air and was curious how these authors would tell this mountain climbing disaster story differently and cover new ground. That they did - The cultural perspective from the indigenous people who work on the mountains and in the mountain climbing trade touched upon the livelihood/poverty, modernity, and ethical/spiritual beliefs made this book come alive for me. I'm not an adrenaline junkie so the conquest of the mountain part was never all that appealing. Putting your life literal [...]

    2. Ever since I read Jon Krakauer's 'Into Thin Air', I thought I would never read another book on high altitude climbing that would be as evocative of the mountain, written with such lucid and terrifying intimacy. This book proves me wrong. It is just as touching and profoundly moving as Krakauer's book and brings to the fore the many issues that are not usually reported in detail while climbing a mountain like K2. At its core, the book is a tribute to the unhonored and unsung heroes of Himalayan M [...]

    3. Granted my interest in camping, climbing, kayaking and the like far surpasses that of many of my friends. I sometimes feel like a odd duck in my suburban life as my family and I head out on our adventures. Once a friend even asked how I could possibly like camping as she could not fathom why I would "want to live like a homeless person for the weekend." The fact that she doesn't "get it" is frustrating and yet doesn't daunt me.So that makes me a hypocrite of sorts because, for the life of me, I [...]

    4. An exciting story to start with that is almost upstaged by the fascinating history of the area and the sherpa climbers. Not a dull chapter in the whole book. You'll come away with a real appreciation of the men who do the heavy work on these expeditions. The author did some impressive research but it wouldn't have been so effective without his writing style. Even the gruesome details of how death took some of the climbers was presented in a respectful way--but it still left me shaken. Great read [...]

    5. When you read books about Everest or K2 you never really hear the back story about the men who carry all the equipment needed to stage a climb, Buried in the Sky introduces you to the men that make that possible. What was interesting about this book that instead of focusing on the climbers it centered more around the porters who make it possible. Sherpa's have been assisting climbers since Hillary reached the summit of Everest in 1953. There are low altitude porters and high altitude porters, th [...]

    6. If you have friends who climb you will want to read this book. A friend of mine perished together with a Sherpa while climbing an 8,000 meter peak and I can better picture the setting around her desire to mountaineer.I keep thinking about the people and cultures documented here. I marvel that people who lost parts of their bodies but seem to think that climbing K2 was worth it. The Sherpas have such different spiritual views.This book also gave me grateful awareness of the simple things that I h [...]

    7. The one thing that always bugged me about stories about mountain climbing was how little press the Sherpas got. True, you climbed whatever, but who did all the heavy lifting. Wouldn't true mountain climbing be doing the work of a Sherpa?This book actually looks at a mountain tragedy with the focus on the Sherpas. Instead of the focus on white and Japanese people climbing a mountain, the reader is given information about what causes people to make a living shelpping stuff up and down mountains fo [...]

    8. A blog reader recommended Buried in the Sky to me based on my interest in Jon Krakauer’s Into Thin Air which I read several years back and loved. Both books are about mountain climbing which is something that I’m kind of fascinated with but really have no desire to do. My lack of desire to go mountain climbing is probably the direct result of reading books like this. It seems like people are always falling off the mountain, disappearing into crevasses or freezing to death at altitudes not th [...]

    9. While there are many accounts of courage and superhuman endurance in Himalayan mountaineering literature, these stories all to frequently relegate the role that Sherpas play in successful summit bids to short footnotes, or, astonishingly, ignore their contributions completely. Fixed lines, which lead to many a successful mountaineering expedition, do not appear by magic, or out of a vacuum, but are generally laid by Sherpas, native climbers from Tibet, Nepal, and Pakistan. Buried in the Sky: The [...]

    10. Have you ever asked yourself, "WHY do people climb tall mountains"? Of coursewe have all asked that question. I must confess that I always came to the conclusion that "those people" must be self absorbed, egotistical, thrill seekers who leave their loved ones behind to carry the really heavy consequential packs. This book does not discount that conclusion least with regards to commercially sponsored mountaineers. Before reading this book, I had gotten my answer partly right, given my cultural ba [...]

    11. A tremendous amount of details and historical data about the sherpas involved in the tragedy on K2. Honestly it did not meet my need for an adventure book nor for a climbing book. It's more like an anthropology and history study about a couple of sherpas in Nepal, tracking down their lives to the childhood. Of course it has its dose of high altitude mountains story but about one third of the book.

    12. Well researched and written. After reading a few mountain-climbing books, however, I find I just don't get the attraction for doing something so likely to get you killed or maimed. Not a criticism of those that engage in it - to each his own - but I can't relate.

    13. Having read a few books capturing the story of this tragedy, it was nice to see a focus shift to the sherpas and HAPs. We grieve for the lost Americans, Europeans and other noteworthy climbing 'celebrities' yet we forget the sacrifice of all the men who ensure that the dreams of others come true.

    14. A look at the lives and struggles of the Sherpas and high-altitude porters in Asia. Excellent education on the live of these professions and the people who are truly in the shadow the climbers we usually hear so much about.

    15. I'm a sucker for mountaineering books. The best by far is Into Thin Air: A Personal Account of the Mt. Everest Disaster, but others such as the history-packed Into the Silence: The Great War, Mallory, and the Conquest of Everest and this much slimmer volume Buried in the Sky don't pull their emotional punches, either.K2 is the popular name of the mountain that is is "shorter than Everest, but much harder" (according to the t-shirt of one of this book's climbers). It's also called The Savage Moun [...]

    16. Quick, sad, exhilarating read. Some clumsily written sentences pulled me out of the book in the first half, but the writers nimbly highlight the disparity between the value of western vs non-western lives to the high-altitude climbing community. An important book for climbers.

    17. I couldn't put this book down - and annoyed everyone around me by telling them all about it as well. :)Great background on life for the Sherpa and in the Himalaya villages. I found myself doing Google searches to see photos of some of the places and to get some background on some things I hadn't heard of. (Word of warning - do not Google "sky burial" and look at the images unless you're not bothered by images of bodies). As one reviewer put it, the Sherpa are the real heroes of the climbing expe [...]

    18. More history than climbing story. Upon beginning this book I was hoping to learn about K2 the way I know about Everest (which I have learned from reading many books of various climbs of the mountain). I was expecting a detailed account of what it is like to climb K2, including landmarks and historical climbs. I wanted a book that began with the climb and then detailed what went wrong during this very deadly season. And while this book has all of that, it really didn't begin until half-way throug [...]

    19. In the beginning I was so fascinated and intrigued by the culture and history of the Sherpas and other Porters that haul people up Everest and K2. The mythology behind these behemoth mountains is also rich and captured my interest. The writers certainly put in a lot of work interviewing so many people to give a full behind the scenes look into this story.Then with a little history and personal investment into the lives of these people they tell the tragic story of what happened on K2. I'm still [...]

    20. Fantastic book. Wish all non-fiction were like this. I thought it might be a sort of 'boo-hoo the tragedy of the poor sherpas ignored by westerners' but it's a really positive account of Chhiring and Pasang's lives and the choices that brought them to the climb. It explains some history of their villages including creation mythology, anthropology, and politics, background information on the intertwining stories of s/Sherpas and western explorers in the surrounding areas, in addition to an interp [...]

    21. Could not put it down. Very much follows the pattern of the superb Into Thin Air. This time 11 climbers from various countries and expeditions die in Aug. 2008, yet two Sherpas somehow live. Loaded with little details about Sherpa high altitude porters' lives and customs. One tof their customs, caring for each other, ended up saving two lives. Pics too. Despite researching for two years, I'll niggle a bit. See missed one error in the text below one photo inside a tent with a "freeze-dried chicke [...]

    22. This phenomenal new book looks back at August 2008, when 11 climbers died on Pakistan's K2 mountain (the second highest mountain on earth, and more technically challenging than Everest). What I really liked most was that it looked at the unsung heroes of every Himalayan climb- the High Altitude Porters (mistakenly labeled 'sherpas' in many instances- Sherpa are an ethnicity in Nepal, and not all HAPs are of Sherpa ethnicity)- instead of focusing on the Western climbers. I gobble up Everest/K2 li [...]

    23. I am a sucker for mountaineering books, and I can find something I enjoy in just about every one I read. Buried in the Sky tells the story of the most deadly day on K2, one of the most treacherous mountains in the world, from the perspective of the sherpas who served the climbers. It was entertaining as far as it went, but given the fact that 8 people died on the mountain that day, and a number of others were left in the death zone for over 24 hours, it is a slim volume. I was left feeling like [...]

    24. Audible edition: Poor planning, poor communication, bad decisions (esp. continuing to summit well after the turnaround time), and misfortune (an avalanche) leads to a lot of dead climbers and many broken hearts. Still, this was a great listen. This was a really well researched and well written book. It included useful coverage of culture (esp. the belief systems of the guides and porters) and climbing history (e.g. Sir Edmund Hillary and Tenzing Norgay). The narration by Deorsch was good in my o [...]

    25. Yeah, yeah, yeah. I'm reading another book on mountaineering. I MUST.Whoops - I finished this a while ago, but forgot to mark it as "read". Loved this one. Unlike the other Everest/mountaineering books I've read, this book tells the lives and stories of the Sherpas, which is a totally different take. It is also mostly about K2, the world's 2nd highest, but more dangerous mountain.

    26. This was a great book. I have read many books about mountain climbing, mostly about Everest. This book makes Everest look like a cakewalk. I found myself shaking my head in disbelief at what these climbers went through. I find myself wanting to just turn right back to page 1 to read it over again.

    27. Enjoying the nonfiction genre of mountaineering and outdoor adventures, I rate this one the best of several that have tackled the complex series of accidents that piled up the bodies on K2 4 years ago. More straightforward and with better diagrams than Freddie Wilkinson's focus on the Sherpas in One Mountain Thousand Summits.

    28. Heard the author Peter Zuckerman speak at our local library. Remarkable story, so well told, so much research went into it. Told like the high-level journalist he is. A real-life disaster from the sherpas' perspective.

    29. I really enjoyed this book. I learned so much about the Sherpa culture and the different types of porters. It is so sad what happened on the mountain. I was very fortunate to have met Chirring in an unexpected introduction. I am so glad I now know his story.

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