Mountain climbers, scientists and scholars use their special skills to unearth the mysteries of a cave city in the Himalayas.
In a remote area of the world, mountain climbers scaling Mt. Everest come across an incredible man-made cave village hidden away in the mountain range. The cave dwellings, part of the former kingdom of Mustang (now part of Nepal), were once part of a thriving community. The climbers received permission from the Nepalese government to study the caves, and the team grew to include those with the skills to interpret the remains, artifacts and other findings. This volume describes the projects that answered many of the questions raised by the discovery of the caves and in doing so demonstrates the special qualities of each of the specialties involved—not the least of which is mountaineering. The author’s brother was one of the original climbers, lending authenticity to the account. The text, which provides a solid history of the region, is supplemented by many photographs of the explorers as well as the items from the excavation. There is rich backmatter: a roster of those involved, a timeline, source notes, glossary, selected bibliography, suggestions for further exploration, photo credits and an index.
Though it’s too bad the voices of the Nepalese scholars involved are not heard, overall, it’s a satisfying exploration. (Nonfiction. 9-14)