Author, Russ Staples, a New Hampshire native, will discuss his recently published memoir, My Everest Odyssey at Waterboro Public Library on Thursday, February 6 at 6 pm. More than 50 years ago Russ trekked from Kathmandu to Mount Everest, the world’s tallest mountain, in sneakers and a borrowed backpack, making him one of the earliest Americans to set foot at the 17,800 ft. basecamp. Russ was a Peace Corps volunteer in southern India in 1967 and the 22-year old set out with $200 in his pocket and an abundance of youthful enthusiasm that would serve him well on his often-harrowing, 27-day, and 400-mile journey by foot.
Unlike Everest adventures of today, Staples’ 1967 hike was unsupported – the robust Everest tourism industry hadn’t yet arrived in Nepal. There were no planes, no hospitals, and certainly no rescues. Instead, he relied on the generosity and kindness of rural Nepali farmers and his own grit and determination. His journey took him by ancient Buddhist monasteries, through neatly terraced fields and pristine Himalayan wilderness as he walked in the footsteps of Sir Edmund Hillary and the 1963 American expedition.
Staples’ memoir is based on the journal he kept during his trek and includes incredible, never-before-published photos of an Everest and a Nepal that exist now only in the pages of history books. It is available to check out at the Library.
Registration not required.