American Alpine Jounrna and Accidents in North American Climbing

Men Against the Clouds

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  • Publication Year: 1935

Men Against the Clouds, by Richard L. Burdsall and Arthur B. Emmons. With contributions by Terris Moore and Jack Theodore Young. 8 vo. ; xiii + 292 pages, with 65 illustrations and eight maps and diagrams. New York: Harper & Brothers, 1935. Price $3.50.

In the rooms of the American Alpine Club hangs an American flag, which once flew on the summit of Minya Konka, 24,891 ft., the second highest peak ever ascended by any expedition. The story of this mountain adventure is told by the four men who accomplished that remarkable and hazardous feat. Beyond the great red basin of Szechwan in Western China and the high Tibetan grasslands stands a range of gigantic snow-clad peaks, of which Minya Konka is the culmination. Shrouded in mystery for centuries it stood unconquered until its challenge was met by the Sikong Expedition in 1932.

The men spent a month in measuring Minya Konka and its range. They explored the wild, jungle-filled valleys and the rugged mountains and glaciers, preliminary to attempting the ascent, living among the nomads. Then with a few natives as porters they established a base camp. From there, in the course of weeks of hardship, they extended a line of camps up the mountain-side and finally won through to the summit. Their travels through China and Tibet, hunting of big game, and thrilling adventures on the wind-swept slopes of the tremendous mountain combine to make an unusual narrative in which American mountaineers may well take pride.

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