Since the birth of modern mountaineering the term Sherpa has been used to refer to Himalayan men working as guides on expeditions in and around the area of Mt. Everest. Known mostly for their remarkable mountaineering skills and expertise, Sherpas are much more than mere high-altitude porters.
The Sherpas are an extraordinary ethnic people who settled the remote valleys in the Himalaya about 500 years ago and whose culture is steeped in the rich philosophical traditions of Himalayan Buddhism.
For three decades, writer and naturalist Frances Klatzel has lived and worked with Sherpas near Mount Everest. During this time, she has gained intimate access and a profound knowledge of the people, helping to create the Sherpa Cultural Centre at Tengboche, the largest Buddhist monastery in the region.
Infused with the author's own reflections and experiences, and complete with color photos highlighting Sherpa life from the metaphysical to the everyday, Gaiety of Spirit will take the reader on a magnificent journey toward a richer level of understanding of Sherpa culture, traditions, symbols, belief and history.
Gaiety of Spirit: The Sherpas of Everest, Frances Klatzel, Rocky Mountain Books; 1 edition (October 1, 2010), Paperback, 176 pages, $26.95