One of the first two Britons to reach the summit of Everest wins estimable Himalayan book prize.
It has just been announced that Up and About:The Hard Road to Everest, the autobiography of British mountaineer Doug Scott, has won the Himalayan Club’s prestigious Kekoo Naoroji Award for Mountain Literature. The first of two volumes, Up and About was released by Vertebrate Publishing on 16 November 2015. The Award was created in 2005 by the Himalayan Club, in association with Naoroji families and Godrej Industries, to reward authors of books that have made an outstanding contribution to literature about the Himalayan region. Named after the club’s former president and secretary, the award honours books about the Himalayan mountains, mountaineering, people, culture, the environment, politics and other related topics.
Doug Scott returned home a national hero when he and his climbing partner Dougal Haston became the first Britons to reach the summit of Mount Everest in 1975. As lead climbers on Chris Bonington’s epic expedition to the mountain’s immense south-west face, they survived the highest bivouac ever without bottled oxygen, sleeping bags and, remarkably, frostbite. In total, Scott has made forty-two expeditions to the high mountains of Asia, reaching the summits of forty peaks. With the exception of his ascent of Everest, he has made all his climbs in alpine style and without the use of supplementary oxygen. Scott was made a CBE in 1984, he is a former president of the Alpine Club, and in 1999 he received the Royal Geographical Society Patron’s Gold Medal. In 2011 he was awarded the Piolets d’Or Lifetime Achievement award and in 1995 he founded Community Action Nepal (CAN), a UKbased registered charity whose aim is to help mountaineers to support the mountain people of Nepal.
Up and About tells Scott’s story from his birth in Nottingham during the darkest days of war to the summit of the world. Actor and writer Michael Palin described the book as, ‘a full and fascinating portrait of one of the great figures of mountaineering. A man for whom no challenge went unanswered.’
In response to the announcement Jon Barton, Managing Director at Vertebrate Publishing commented: ‘This is a staggering award recognising books about mountaineering in the greater ranges. We’re humbled that this is the second time a Vertebrate author has received the award, following Tony Smythe’s win for his biography My Father, Frank in 2015.’
The Book Award Ceremony will be held on February 18, 2017 in Mumbai. The year 2017 – 18 is very special for the Himalayan Club as this will be the 90th year of its existence. The KN Book Award Ceremony will be the inaugural event for a year filled with celebrations, events and activities marking the anniversary.