The World Beneath Their Feet: Mountaineering, Madness, and

A saga of survival, technological innovation, and breathtaking human physical achievement all set against the backdrop of a world headed toward war that became one of the most compelling international dramas of the th centuryAs tension steadily rose between European powers in the s, a different kind of battle was already raging across the Himalayas Teams of mountaineers from Great Britain, Nazi Germany, and the United States were all competing to be the first to climb the world s highest peaks, including Mount Everest and K Unlike climbers today, they had few photographs or maps, no properly working oxygen systems, and they wore leather boots and cotton parkas Amazingly, and against all odds, they soon went farther and higher than anyone could have imagined And as they did, their story caught the world s attention The climbers were mobbed at train stations, and were featured in movies and plays James Hilton created the mythical land of Shangri La in Lost Horizon, while an English eccentric named Maurice Wilson set out for Tibet in order to climb Mount Everest alone And in the darkened corridors of the Third Reich, officials soon discovered the propaganda value of planting a Nazi flag on top of the world s highest mountains Set in London, New York, Germany, and in India, China, and Tibet, The World Beneath Their Feet is a story not only of climbing and mountain climbers, but also of passion and ambition, courage and folly, tradition and innovation, tragedy and triumph Scott Ellsworth tells a rollicking, real life adventure story that moves seamlessly from the streets of Manhattan to the footlights of the West End, deadly avalanches on Nanga Parbat, rioting in the Kashmir, and the wild mountain dreams of a New Zealand beekeeper named Edmund Hillary and a young Sherpa runaway called Tenzing Norgay Climbing the Himalayas was the Greatest Generation s moonshot one that was clouded by the onset of war and then, incredibly, fully accomplished A gritty, fascinating history that promises to enrapture fans of Hampton Sides, Erik Larson, Jon Krakauer, and Laura Hillenbrand, The World Beneath Their Feet brings this forgotten story back to life The World Beneath Their Feet: Mountaineering, Madness, and the Deadly Race to Summit the Himalayas


About the Author: Scott Ellsworth

Scott Ellsworth is the bestselling author of several books, including The Secret Game, which was the winner of the 2016 PEN ESPN Award for Literary Sports Writing He has written about American history for the New York Times, the Washington Post, and the Los Angeles Times Formerly a historian at the Smithsonian Institution, he is the author of Death in a Promised Land, his groundbreaking account of the 1921 Tulsa race riot He teaches at the University of Michigan source



10 thoughts on “The World Beneath Their Feet: Mountaineering, Madness, and the Deadly Race to Summit the Himalayas

  1. says:

    While it is well known that Sir Edmund Hilary was the first person to reach the summit of Mount Everest, what isn t as well known are the many attempts to climb Everest and other summits in the Himalayas before Hilary reached the top There were many attempts to scale these mountains by various groups of climbers, most notably from England, Germany and the United States The adventures of some of these attempts


  2. says:

    Ellsworth s excellent new book begins with a quick reference to the failed Mallory Everest attempt in 1924 We are then treated to a narrative full of impressive individuals and their dreams to conquer the highest peaks of the Himalayas Germans, Brits, Frenchmen, Kiwis, Americans, Swiss, Italians, Nepalis and Indians all put their strengths to the test against these monsters most of them came up empty handed Ellsw


  3. says:

    So, five years ago thanks Facebook Memories , I had just finished reading Into Thin Air by Jon Krakauer and commenced in a deep dive on everything Everest, K2, and mountaineering related It was intense no surprise , very educational, and also, at times, I ll admit, morbidly fascinating If anything though, it made me feel like I was there, climbing the Himalayas with heroes of the past, seeing what they were seeing a


  4. says:

    The first half of the twentieth century saw some astonishing achievements in the world of mountain climbing However, no peak greater than 8,000 meters had yet been conquered, and access to the Himalaya wasn t always straightforward, not only because of geography, but politics as well As the shadow of war loomed on Europe in the 30 s, the rivalries between nations became evenintense, especially between the British, Germ


  5. says:

    A fascinating book about the efforts, often with tragic consequences, of mountaineers, principally from Britain, Germany and the United States to reach the summits of Himalayan Achttausenders in the first half of the 20th century These peeks, over eight thousand meters high, include Everest, K2 and Nanga Parbat The book takes you to the heights in gale winds, sub zero temperatures and blinding snow storms and gives a sens


  6. says:

    This is a thrilling, well told account of the race to the top of the world s highest mountains Ellsworth does a wonderful job telling the stories of the alipinists and adventurers while also explaining the historical context and technological innovations in a relatable style The result is a fast paced, transportive read For anyone who loves history and the outdoors, this book is a wonderful escape when many of us are current


  7. says:

    I won an advanced reader s copy of this book through a Goodreads Giveaway on January 15, 2020 In the notification message, I was advised to allow 4 6 weeks for delivery, but the book was shipped only two days later Naturally, we ve all become accustomed to such fast shipment of books Such is the way of the world now.But when I received The World Beneath Their Feet on January 21, and began to read it, I soon felt the author, the


  8. says:

    The World Beneath Their Feet by Scott Ellsworth is a nonfiction account of The Great Himalayan Race, an event from the late 1920s to the middle of the 1950s where many countries were racing to be the first to climb the tallest Himalayan mountains The author is successful in documenting this race by retelling some of the most important and wildly entertaining expeditions between the three main countries involved Germany, England an


  9. says:

    A very gripping account of all the mis adventures that have transpired in order to summit the tallest mountain on planet Earth I have to admit I was a bit worried that this might be another book that tediously drones on about the details of each particular Mount Everest climb, such as who was moody on this particular day, which food they eat at that moment, how many meters they covered then, and so on Although there was, of course, s


  10. says:

    Nonfiction farfascinating than fiction an excerpt for Pam, they brought along dog eared copies of Wuthering Heights , Pride and Prejudice, and the Oxford Book of Greek Verse in their rucksacks and this where every additional ounce might determinevictory and defeat Though of course Many people believed that mountain climbers, as a whole, were mad the book picks up where INTO THE SILENCE leaves off INTO covered the Great War and The World


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