Afraid To Embark Risks? Then Watch ‘North Face Presents: Lhotse, ft. Hilaree Nelson & Jim Morrison’

A documentary on the ski descent from World’s 4th Highest Mountain Peak

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Courtesy: The North Face YouTube. Premiered Oct 15, 2019. Main link embedded.

“Taking a new step, uttering a new word, is what people fear most.” — Fyodor Dostoevsky

As I heard in my childhood, life is not a bed of roses. Without taking the chances or the leap of faith to move forward, the opportunity itself remains in its shell, rather than embracing us. Examples across the world inspire us to believe in ourselves and help us embarking on challenges outside our comfort zone (for attaining the unimaginable greatness of life). The following is one of those examples, unintentionally discovered while browsing YouTube videos.

The documentary is called ‘North Face presents’ Lhotse ft. Hilaree Nelson And Jim Morrison’.

Lhotse: where is it?

Lhotse is the fourth highest mountain globally at 8,516 meters (27,940 feet), just adjacent to Mount Everest. In the Tibetan language, ‘Lhotse’ means “South Peak” and is located between the Tibet and Khumbu region, Nepal.

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Image courtesy: Wikimedia commons (links: left-side image, right-side image)
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Lhotse, south face, view from Chukhung Ri. Image courtesy: Wikimedia Commons (image link)

What does the documentary cover?

As a part of the North Face’s mountaineering team, Hilaree and Jim went climbing Lhotse peak, under the Himalayan mountain range, but with an additional challenge. This documentary is the story of that journey, highlighting their challenges, obstacles, route, and personal stories, which provides us diverse aspects inside the documentary.

A journey they embarked

The super crews and Sherpas took necessary preparations as required, starting from the Namche Bazar to the Phortse base. The monsoon season of the Himalayan mountain range was not busy, and they selected the season so that they could have a clear path to ascend and descent.

The ascending & descending path of Lhotse is almost the same as mountain Everest, except they wanted to do that with ski mountaineering.

Crazy, isn’t it?

Moving through the Khumbu ice-fall (where avalanches fall in glittering crazy chunks), camping in similar distances like the Everest path, the rangers’ lonely journey put an alternative reality altogether. Punchy breakable crusts pushed them back while they ascended to the peak while managing their loaded backpacks and ski equipment. And, at last, after 29 days, on September 30, 2018, they reached the Lhotse peak.

What happened next?

“… the Universe grants you a moment and you take it.”

— Jim Morrison (Ski Mountaineer)

Courtesy: The North Face YouTube Channel (link); participants: Hilaree Nelson, Jim Morrison, Nick Kalisz, Simpson, Fu Tashi Sherpa and Ila Nuru Sherpa.

It is an incredible experience, watching their journey to achieve what no one attained before. It indicates that dare to take risks (to break barriers) is critical to embrace something extra-ordinary, something out-of-the-world experience. Such an incredible experience worth risk-taking.

Dare to take risks for embracing new opportunities

Apart from the journey and winning the challenge, the documentary marks some impressions on you regarding life. And both the mountaineers mentioned the gist in their remarks.

“Made a turn, made another turn and was getting really tight and a little bit of camber and I was like there’s I’m never gonna be in this place in this moment again, I should really make this next turn account even though I sort of want a slide slip through here I’m gonna make two more turns because I’m never gonna get this opportunity again and I want these two turns to be with me.”

— Jim Morrison (Ski Mountaineer)

“I think there is so much aversion to risk-taking, I don’t think that’s the right direction we should be going. Like you have to take risks if you want to learn anything about yourself, wanna expand the self-imposed walls we put around ourselves. I think that’s what’s interesting to me as species is if we can do that and that is how we move forward, how we create things, how we have ideas, by taking risks and being a little different or being passionate about something you know, you don’t have to climb Lhotse to do that.”

— Hilaree Nelson (Ski Mountaineer)

Concluding note

There is a short narration of the Sherpas at the end (who supported Hilaree & Jim’s journey). If you have watched till the end, aren’t you surprised by Sherpas’ expedition numbers, in the highest mountain range of the world, including the expeditions in Mount. Everest! Astonishing, isn’t it?

“It’s not because things are difficult that we dare not venture. It’s because we dare not venture that they are difficult.”

— Seneca

Indeed, limits are within ourselves; we can overcome them if we dare. What’s fascinating is that there is always some extraordinary heights, that some people will look forward to attaining by taking risks and breaking barriers. That’s the courage and bravery that we can look forward to, take inspiration, and overcome challenges in our lives.

Suntonu Bhadra ▪ January, 2021

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Human ▪ Amongst top Medium writers in Travel, Photography & Poetry ▪ Editor of Paper Poetry & Business Thoughts Notebook ▪ Insta: sbpoetrymedium