“Journalist and Everest veteran presents a picture of the great mountain as lawless and unregulated as a gold rush town in the 19th century. It is a fascinating account in which theft, fraud, negligence and mayhem are all present and accounted for.
On a mountain in which the fragility of life is so evident even small crimes as sleeping in someone’s tent and sleeping bag can be life threatening larger crimes can have dire consequences. As Kodas states:
”Those attempting to domesticate The Goddess Mother of the Universe with ropes and satellites shouldn’t be surprised that she isn’t submitting gracefully to being a mere mortal’s mountain.”
At high altitude with little oxygen the brain becomes impaired as does judgment at a time when they are both most needed. Memories blur and the mind becomes confused, reality becomes obscured. The focus becomes the summit and we find people quite willing to step past the dying in their quest for the top.
Kodas explains that there are high stakes on Everest money, fame and prestige are all things which will bring out the criminal element. Selling dysfunctional oxygen containers, lying about experience, neglect and shirking responsibilities, spousal abuse, threats, assault and fraud are all detailed in High Crimes: The Fate of Everest in an Age of Greed. If you find this interesting especially with the setting of Mount Everest, this is a book you should read.”