Friday, 10 March 2017

Three low-wattage luminaries

 Three low-wattage luminaries: left to right, Pete Barry, Aat Vervoorn and Bruce Jenkinsin on Tasman Saddle. Photo: Aat Vervoorn collection

One of the best books on NZ mountaineering covering the 60s and 70s, is Aat Vervoorn's 'Beyond the Snowline.'
I love this quote from his book: 
"Mountaineering is merely one among many mediums for self-realisation. What makes it exceptional is that, in mountaineering, it is difficult to credit yourself with spurious motives or convince yourself that your efforts actually matter to mankind. Halfway up a mountain face, with the glacier falling away below and around you sweeping buttesses of ice and rock which bring you face to face with weakness and fallibility. it is hard to pretend you have willingly exposed yourself to the danger that shoots you through with fear in the belief it will benefit society, or meet the pathetic animal needs that drive your body."

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