Subtitled "A Journey Into Tibet", this book by Wade Brackenbury (29 years old) is a vivid tale of his attempts to be the first westerner to visit the Drung Valley of Southern Tibet. Cut off from China by 20,000 foot mountains, accessible via 14,000 foot passes for only a few months a year (after the snow melts), and forbidden to foreigners by a suspicious Chinese goverment, no westerner had been there in over a century.

Recalling the likes of John Muir, Wade is part mountaineer, part angry young man, part well hidden monk. He is arrested numerous times, suffers virtually all stomach distresses in those parts (living mainly on a diet of Yak Butter Tea , Yak and Potatoes), and other personal challenges.

One of his distresses is that his mere presence in such a place causes hardship to the locals, as the presence of any westerner can in some non-western cultures. He makes the best of it though, and leaves a small legend behind him.

A relatively quick read, I found this book to be very descriptive of the flexibility needed to do "hard" traveling, as opposed to what most of us consider travelling.

224 pages, Published by Algonquin Books of Chapel Hill

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