As he teetered on a narrow rock ledge a yak's bellow short of the stratosphere, with a rubber mask strapped to his face, a pair of mittens the size of a sealion's flippers, and a drop of two kilometres below him, it's fair to say Mark Horrell wasn't entirely happy with the situation he found himself in.
He had been an ordinary hiker who had only read books about mountaineering. When he signed up for an organised trek in Nepal with a group of elderly ladies, little did he know that ten years later he would be attempting to climb the world's highest mountain.
But as he travelled across the Himalayas, Andes, Alps and East Africa, following in the footsteps of the pioneers, he dreamed up a seven-point plan to gain the skills and experience which could turn a wild idea into reality.
Funny, incisive and heartfelt, his journey provides a refreshingly honest portrait of the joys and torments of a modern-day Everest climber.
Praise for Mark Horrell's other books:
"This account, of his successful attempt to climb Everest from the North side, has elevated him and his writing to a whole new level ... Every gasp of thin air, every ankle-wrenching pain, is included in Horrell's narrative." - Customer review, The Chomolungma Diaries
"Mark is a very engaging writer: honest, humorous, with wonderful descriptions of the environment and captivating tales of the trails." - Customer review, The Chomolungma Diaries
"A compelling read with no smoke and mirrors, just a whole lot of truth, hard work, and humility. Great book!" - Customer review, The Chomolungma Diaries
"Breathtaking, fascinating, insightful and honest. He has a fantastic attitude towards his climbing, the most important point being, it's not getting to the top, it's living to try it again, and enjoying the amazing privilege of being able to do it in the first place." - Customer review, Thieves, Liars and Mountaineers
"Dry wit and sharp observation made this an excellent read. Lovely descriptions of the mountains. Looking forward to the next one." - Customer review, Thieves, Liars and Mountaineers
"Horrell is a very descriptive, self-deprecating, witty writer ... The prose is breezy and light and the story moves along briskly. Highly recommended." - Customer review, Thieves, Liars and Mountaineers
"Mark's books are beautifully written, very humorous and you feel like you are there experiencing the mountain." - Customer review, Denali Nights
"As usual Mark's writing manages to be both lively and down-to-earth. Strongly recommended!" - Customer review, Denali Nights