Krakauer demystifies the enigmatic Everest as well as points out that the climbers were like any other normal human beings with their share of heroism and courage, fear and failure. Just as he draws an account of the successful expeditions of the legendary climbers he would speak of the gruesome instances of failures, death and the struggles of survival. Krakauer being a passionate climber his story narrates first hand experiences. It is his understanding and knowledge of climbing that seems to give him an insight into the nature of the expedition and make his interpretation meaningful.
The Lhotse Face episode reveals a disturbing picture of the state of the climbers who were completely demoralized and were suffering from a multitude of ailments related to high altitude. The stark reality of ego tussles and pride stand out amid the impending natural catastrophe that once again exposes the vulnerable nature of human beings. The utter lack of cooperation from the climbers of the other expedition teams and the climbing strategies that sometimes compelled one to be insensitive seem to question the ethical values of our society that are flouted on the mountains.
A reading of his book Into Thin Air helps one to conceptualize the various intentions of those people who have willingly opted to undertake the hazardous journey to scale the Everest. It is astonishing for lay persons to conceive of the madness of spending some $70,000 dollars to climb Mt. Everest. It is all the more disturbing to find out that a large number of climbers though rich are not qualified climbers. As Krakauer points out that there were people from different walks of life be it the wealthy doctor Beck Weathers or the rich socialite Sandy Hill Pittman. It appears that all of those climbers have their individual reasons to ‘summit’ (Krakauer, 1997) the Everest. For some reaching the top of the Everest is a dream fulfillment and something of a trophy for a