Alpinist 39

The Magician's Glass

Posted on: July 11, 2012

In the 1970s and early 1980s, a small band of British Himalayan alpinists climbed harder, faster and lighter than many others of their time thought possible. By the mid-1980s, most of them had died. Journalist Ed Douglas profiles three survivors of this brief, magic era—Nick Colton, Tim Leach and Steve Bell—trying to understand the 1981 Annapurna III attempt that caused these men to scale back their alpinism and to search for other meanings in their lives: What if the most important peaks are the ones we never climb?

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