Ascent: a life spent climbing on the edge
CHRIS BONINGTON is Britain’s best-known climber, having spent lifetime among the world’s highest and wildest mountains. In the 1960s, he made the first British ascent of the north face of the Eiger. In the 1970s, he led some of the most important first ascents ever achieved in the Himalaya, including the south face of Annapurna and the south-west face of Everest the hard way. Along with successes came the agony of friends losing their lives on the mountain, gambling with the highest stakes of all.
In the 1980s, he reached the summit of Everest himself, aged fifty-one, a moment of fulfilment that only renewed his passion for adventure. In the years since, he has led countless expeditions to remote peaks with small teams all over the world, his enthusiasm for remote and little-known places still burning as he enters his ninth decade.
In this new autobiography, he looks back on his extraordinary life, recounting his family’s adventurous roots, his mother’s struggle to bring him up through the Blitz on her own, his discovery of the mountains, his fierce ambition and the long marriage that gave a sensitive boy the security to find his place in the world. Honours and fame follow the decades of risk and adventure, but nothing can protect him from the devastating fatal illness of his wife Wendy. Open, honest and full of hard-won wisdom, Ascent is the epic saga of an unrepeatable life of adventure.