I never really ever thought about mountain-climbing that much as a person – just like any other hobby it’s really an acquired taste and requires persistence and focus. I totally admire that within people who choose to spend their time in the outdoors – I honestly wish I had the ability to be so athletic and durable when putting one’s body to the natural limit (whether it be your physical limit or the limits provided by the environment you’re in). I personally, would never be able to do things like survive in the wild in just a tent and hunting/fishing tools or put my body to the limit to explore nature’s most beautiful creations.
So, when I picked up John Krakauer’s “Into Thin Air”, I really wasn’t expecting myself to become so intrigued in this world of climbing. It took my mind a while to understand the terms and names of areas of the mountain, but it astonished me how specific and complicated this process is. And I really begin to admire and idolize these people who go through these physical hardships to see the world from above.
I believe Meru (2015) was just recently added to Netflix, but I could be wrong because I don’t pay attention to dates like that. It was directed by Jimmy Chin and Elizabeth Chai Vasarhelyi that documented a trio of Conrad Anker, Jimmy Chin, and Renan Ozturk in their attempts at climbing up the Meru Peak in the Indian Himalayas.
Their route was ascending over the “Shark’s Fin” route up the peak, and is an extremely difficult and dangerous path to take. It tells of their climbs and their falls, their avalanches, storms, and whatever else Mother Nature threw at them on the rocky, unstable cliffside.
Each climber is incredibly dedicated and passionate about what they do, and they all share a bond not only as friends but as climbers and supporters and strengths while enduring the harsh mountainsides.
If you’re looking for a documentary that explores new ways of finding, setting and achieving personal goals in the form of these committed climbers. It’s inspiring, yet still chillingly disturbing and eye-opening when you realize the force of what nature can do.