Where the Mountain Casts Its Shadow : The Personal Costs of Climbing, Paperback

Where the Mountain Casts Its Shadow : The Personal Costs of Climbing Paperback

5 out of 5 (1 rating)


Climbers who court danger in the world's highest places risk far more than just their own skins.

When tragedy strikes, what happens to the people who love them?

Why would anyone choose to invest in a future with a high-altitude climber?

What is life like in the shadow of the mountain? Such questions have long been taboo within the international world of mountaineering.

Now Maria Coffey breaks this silence. She recounts climbers' stories of near-death experiences, and gives a voice to the families and loved ones of Chris Bonington, Ed Viesturs, Anatoli Boukreev and Alex Lowe, amongst many other famous names.

Her riveting narrative weaves tales of adventure with first-person accounts of the people left behind, highlighting the conflicting beauty, passion and devastation of this alluring obsession.


  • Format: Paperback
  • Pages: 304 pages, 30
  • Publisher: Cornerstone
  • Publication Date:
  • Category: Climbing & mountaineering
  • ISBN: 9780099436089



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Maria Coffey's deceptively simple style works perfectly in this book allowing the reader insight into the deeply personal and often profound emotions experienced by the families of High Altitude climbers. She perfectly encapsulates the obsessions of the mountaineer, yearning for the mountains from home and yearning for home in the mountains. The dilemma facing their loved one, do they try and stop the climbing and change the person they love forever, or do they live with the fears and let them climb. Coffey, whose boyfriend, Joe Tasker, disappeared on Everest, sensitively explores her own grief and that of others who have lost loved ones, or part of themselves in the mountains.. But she also tries to get to the heart of what drives these men and women to leave hearth and home to risk frostbite, mountain sickness and possible death. This is a superb companion book to the testosterone filled climbing canon.

Also by Maria Coffey