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Everest the Cruel Way

Everest the Cruel Way

Joe Tasker


A classic of mountaineering, although not to the same extent as Savage Arena, Tasker's other (later) book.

This is the story of an ill-fated expedition to climb Everest by an unusual route, in winter. The challenge was too great and the team had to turn back, plagued by illness and atrocious weather. But that in no way diminishes their achievement, and they laid the ground work for later winter expeditions to the Himalayas having exposed exactly how cruel the wind in particular made climbing in that season.

Tasker is quite an acute observer of his partners, especially of their strengths as climbers and team-mates. He himself comes through less strongly, and this is a far less personally revealing account than is "Savage Arena". It's probably best read as an inspiring tale of what can be achieved even when short of ultimate success.

4/5. Finished 07 June 2021.

(Originally published on Goodreads.)

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