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The Chomolungma Diaries: What a commercial Everest expedition is really like

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3.90  ·  Rating details ·  274 ratings  ·  17 reviews
In April 2012 Mark Horrell travelled to Tibet hoping to become, if not the first person to climb Mount Everest, at least the first Karl Pilkington lookalike to do so.

He joined a mountaineering expedition which included an Australian sexagenarian, two Brits whose idea of hydration meant a box of red wine, and a New Zealander who enjoyed reminding his teammates of the perils
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Published (first published November 17th 2012)
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Average rating 3.90  · 
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chucklesthescot
May 09, 2015 rated it really liked it
This book is about a climbing expedition on the North Face of Everest. It sounds like a very wild and windy environment even at Base Camp compared to what I have read about those on the South side. Both sides of the mountain of course have their own unique challenges.

Mark's challenges begin with twitchy Chinese officials at the border and keeping up with everyone else in the alcohol drinking stakes. That's all everyone seems to do is sit around getting drunk every chance they get. If I had spent
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Kylie
Jan 02, 2016 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2016
This travelogue is exactly what it claims to be: a "lightly edited" account of Mark Horrell's notes and experiences climbing Everest as part of a commercial expedition. "Lightly edited" is putting it kindly, and while I respect that Horrell wants to keep it an honest travelogue and not an epic adventure novel, the many obvious grammar errors were hard for me to ignore. It's a quick read, but more than once the phrase "Easy reading is damn hard writing" came to mind, as much of the writing is... ...more
Alexandra Pavaloiu
Feb 20, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: docu, mountains
Quite of a fresh point of view, and more of an irreverent one, Mark Horrell's book is a breath of fresh air among mountaineering books, bringing mundane-ness and a dose of reality to this genre. I have read many classics in mountaineering and being a climber myself know what is behind the lines in these classics- but Mark extracts the most intriguing aspects of a commercial expeditions laying it bare. Thoroughly enjoyed it.
Saurabh Shekatkar
Jan 04, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Mark's books are not for the conventional reader, if one is looking for perfect prose and writing. It is more for one who is in love with the mountains. The writing style is pretty simple and conveys ideas and perspectives well. Hence, the restraint on my part from giving it 5 stars.
The content in terms of minutiae and various viewpoints from a trekker perspective, however, is simply outstanding. He has a knack of putting humour to very good use and including a small line at key places which cha
...more
Eurydicegirlgmail.Com
Honest, a blend of appreciation and self knowledge

Realistic, candid, humble and humorous. A person you can identify with, a balanced perspective laced with sardonic wit.
Bluntly admits to moments of sheer terror, including a ominous portent that after emerging intact from ascent, trekking back to base camp his journey will close with a humiliating trampling by yaks . Hah! Very human.
Wandering Wizard
Very nicely written. A light and very enjoyable read. No surprises, no heart-stopping moments but an honest and direct account of the expedition. Feels much more closer to you.
Lynda Watts
Jul 10, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Good read. Thoroughly enjoyed it.
Courtney Schafer
Interesting account of a successful guided Everest expedition from the point of view of a client. It’s fashionable among the climbing community to sneer at the “yak routes” on Everest and bemoan the commercialization of the peak, especially after Krakauer’s Into Thin Air provided such a harsh critique of the inexperience of some clients on guided trips. “If you haven’t the skill to climb the mountain on your own, you shouldn’t be there,” is a sentiment I’ve heard many times at a crag. Talk got e ...more
Richard
Sep 21, 2015 rated it really liked it
A fascinating clients view of a successful Everest expedition. I'm more used to reading the disaster type mountaineering books so this was a refreshing change. It comes across as a very honest portrayal of the experience of climbing Everest as part of a commercial expedition, without all the flowery crap you often get from people looking back through rose tinted glasses.

I would definitely recommend this to anyone who enjoys reading mountain literature and wants a different perspective :-)
Vettius29
Jan 20, 2013 rated it liked it
A Kindle book that is the actual diary of a climber that was on a successful expedition up the north(Tibetan) side of Everest. So many books have been written about climbing the south side of Everest that it is nice to read descriptions of the features climbed on the north side. The story is a quick read (not sure how many pages because it is a kindle edition only) but an enjoyable read for anyone who enjoys mountain climbing stories.
Mark Kavanagh
Mar 24, 2013 rated it it was amazing
The second of Mark's books that I've read, and I'll certainly be trying to read all of his his ebooks.
An account of being a paying client on a commercial expedition to summit Everest. Horrel writes in a simple but entertaining fashion, and his books a relatively short - but sometimes brevity is no bad thing.
Lesley
Nov 20, 2013 rated it really liked it
A lovely, down to earth account of one man's summit attempt on the north side of Everest. Brought the whole experience to vivid life, never shying away from describing his own fears and weaknesses. This is the second of Mark's books I've read and I'm fast becoming a fan!
Sandiip
Apr 09, 2013 rated it really liked it
Shelves: adventure
Interesting easy read about the north side summit assault of Mount Everest . I like the straight and honest approach. It's more of a diary and makes for excellent reading if you like mountain climbing stories.
John Smith
Apr 14, 2013 rated it really liked it
Very enjoyable read. I am now reading Marks Ascent of Manaslu.
Amy Zelik-Diker
Dec 05, 2013 rated it it was amazing
If you love reading about Everest, you'll love this account.
A Ivy
Jan 30, 2016 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Decently written account of an ascent of Everest. No drama. Solid read (and free on Amazon).
Elise Hopkins
Nov 02, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
An interesting account of his climb to Mt. Everest. Learned some things but left me wanting to know more about his climb.
Donna
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Jan 25, 2017
Agnieszka
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Jan 09, 2017
Margaret
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For many years Mark Horrell has been writing what has been described as one of the most credible Everest opinion blogs out there. He writes about trekking and mountaineering from the often silent perspective of the commercial client.

For nearly 20 years he has been exploring the world’s greater mountain ranges and keeping a diary of his travels. As a writer he strives to do for mountain history wha
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