Nanga Parbat 1970: Tragedy and Controversy: Sale, Richard & Jochen Hemmleb
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Nanga Parbat 1970: Tragedy and Controversy

Author(s): Sale, Richard & Jochen Hemmleb

Copyright: 2014, UK
Specifications: 1st, Ltd ed 500, 8vo, pp.208, 31 color & 29 bw photos, sketch, 2 maps, photo eps, blue cloth
Condition: signed Sale, dj & cloth new

In 1970 a German-Austrian-Italian (South Tyrolean) team succeeded in climbing the Rupal Face of Nanga Parbat, a climb which heralded a new era in mountaineering on the world’s highest peaks. But with success came controversy as the first climbers to reach the summit, two young South Tyrolean brothers, did not return to the top face camp but descended the other side, the Diamir side, of the mountain. Only one brother survived the ordeal: he was Reinhold Messner who went on to became the greatest, and best known, high-altitude climber in the world. His brother Günther was lost on the mountain.
Before descending the Diamir side Reinhold Messner held a shouted conversation with the members of the second pair of climbers heading for the summit. That conversation, the decision to descend the Diamir side, and the circumstances of Günther’s death were to lead to controversy, claim and counter claim, and court cases. They were also to lead to a bitterness between former team mates which continues to this day.
This book explores the events of 1970, drawing on contemporary diaries and other records, on later interviews given by, and books written by, the team members, and on private conversations with some of the surviving team members. It draws heavily on the writings of Reinhold Messner who has published several accounts of the summit climb and the decisions which led to the descent of the Diamir side, accounts which have varied over the years, variations that suggest a story behind the story.

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