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Touching My Father's Soul: A Sherpa's Journey to the Top of Everest
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Touching My Father's Soul: A Sherpa's Journey to the Top of Everest

3.94  ·  Rating details ·  1,867 Ratings  ·  111 Reviews
In a story of Everest unlike any told before, Jamling Tenzing Norgay gives us an insider's view of the Sherpa world. As Climbing Leader of the famed 1996 Everest IMAX expedition led by David Breashears, Jamling Norgay was able to follow in the footsteps of his legendary mountaineer father, Tenzing Norgay, who with Sir Edmund Hillary was the first to reach the summit of Mou ...more
Paperback, 336 pages
Published May 14th 2002 by HarperOne (first published January 1st 2001)
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Jan 13, 2010 rated it really liked it
As I read this book, I kept feeling sorry for people who only know Mt. Everest through Jon Krakauer's Into Thin Air . They are missing out. It's not that Mr. Norgay's book is better, only that it offers a sharply different perspective. Put another way, this book taught me that a true understanding of Everest cannot be achieved from the perspective of only one nationality or ethnicity.

Like so many people, I thought the term "Sherpa" was just a job title, not the name of an entire people with a
Oct 28, 2010 rated it it was amazing
When Jon Krakauer writes "I learned alot" in the introduction to a book, I definitely want to read that book. And so this wonderful book begins... by the end of it, you feel you have gone up Everest not once but several times - you relive the tragic 1996 season, you find a new dimension of the Norgay/Hillary first ascent, and you finally understand the backstory of Chomolungma and the spell she has cast over the world. My favorite lines in the book are, from western climbers: "You don't conquer ...more
Feb 16, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: adventure seekers + those keen to learn more about Sherpas & the great peaks of Nepal/Tibet & beyond
Touching My Father's Soul: A Sherpa's Journey to the Top of Everest by Jamling Tenzing Norgay is a formidable adventure tale that is also a coming of age story by the son of Tenzing Norgay Sherpa, who together with Sir Edmund Hillary made the first documented successful ascent of Everest (called "Chomolungma" by the Sherpas) in 1953, an event celebrated around the globe. (It remains unclear if George Mallory & Sandy Irvine, missing on Everest for 75 years before their bodies were recovered, ...more
Apr 24, 2007 rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: Adventurers, Climbers, Those wanting to learn more about Buddhism
This book is a good compliment to Krakauer's "Into Thin Air." Unlike the Krakauer book, which focuses mostly on the climb up Everest in 1996 and tragic events that unfolded there, this book looks at climbing Everest from the Sherpa's perspective.

I found Norgay's explanation of Buddhism, his return to faith and family, and the physical aspect of climbing very moving. Alone, without the background of Krakauer's book I don't know that I would have liked this book so much-- knowing the backdrop for
Jamling Tenzing Norgay's "Touching my Father's Soul: A Sherpa's Journey to the Top of Everest" is really an excellent book. It was wonderful to read about Everest from a Sherpa's perspective.

Jamling, of course, is the son of Tenzing Norgay, who was the first to ascend Mt. Everest with Sir Edmund Hillary. Jamling himself was on an expedition up Everest with a team carrying an IMAX camera in the tragic 1996 season when 12 climbers lost their lives -- most on the same day in the teeth of a ferocio
Mar 14, 2014 rated it really liked it
Very good read even for non-mountaineers. Going between his father's first ascent of the mountain and Jamling Norgay's ascent gave the narrative a personal angle that couldn't have come from anyone else. Writing is a little dry but clear, and the story is well-woven and touching. The spiritual passages were not as interesting for me as the climbing ones, however, they contributed to my closer understanding of Norgay and Sherpas. Finished reading on May 29th, anniversary of the 1st ascent of Mt. ...more
Jul 19, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: non-fiction
Jamling Norgay is the son of Tensing Norgay Sherpa who ascended Mt. Everest with Sir Edmund Hillery in 1953. In Touching My Father's Soul, he recounts portions of his father's life and his own early life before beginning the tale of his own first attempt at Mt. Everest, the ill-fated 1996 Everest IMAX expedition. There have been other books recounting this expedition but this is the first one by a local person instead of an outsider.
Desmond Beddoe
Dec 07, 2013 rated it it was amazing
The spiritual and physical journey taken in the quest for Everest is made all the more remarkable by my having just been physically through all the places Jamling writes about. The Buddhist beliefs and culture are carved into the rocks and traditions of the Himalayas, this book reawakens the authors acceptance of his father's legacy and allows him to be spiritually renewed. A wonderful read.
May 23, 2008 rated it liked it
This was a good read. It was interestign to get hte perspective of a Sherpa. Despite being an member of the group, he had a unique insight into the expedition / tragedy from a Sherpa POV.

I learned much about Tenzing Norgay from this book. He seems an amazing man who was respected and revered by multiple cultures so much that many claim him as their own.
Jun 11, 2008 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Anyone who read Into Thin Air, to compare
Great book. It's hard to pigeonhole this book into one genre. It's a bio of Tenzig Norgay, reflections of his son, non-fiction about the disasterous season on Mt. Everest, and an intro into Sherpa culture. This book will have you gripped.
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“the great mass of humanity distracted by the trappings and fabricated urgency of modern life.” 1 likes
“Experience is the best antidote for fear. An inexperienced climber doesn’t know whether to trust a tiny foothold the size of a penny, but it can feel as safe as a carpeted hallway to an experienced climber.” 0 likes
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