Who climbs whom

Mountaineering as a sport is about fairness, honesty, and humility born of risk. It is not about taking advantage of helplessness and poverty.

In the winter of 19 78,1 w as horn e in Phalebas, Parbat District, after an absence of almost four years. My village is situated along the eastern terrace formed by the Kali Gandaki river and commands a grand view of Dhaulagiri (8167m) and the Arma purnaranges. One evening when Dhaulagiri looked aflame in the setting sun, an elderly lady happened to find me staring at the view in fascination. She threw a quick glance at the mountain and said matter-of-factly, "Yes it is truly beautiful, but it does not feed us." The point inherent in that statement has stayed with me ever since.

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Himal Southasian