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The Last True Explorer Phillip Temple
Large PB 250 pages
Very good condition
Fifty years ago, a young New Zealand mountaineer headed into the unknown interior of West New Guinea (now Irian Jaya or West Papua) on one of the last great journeys of exploration. Travelling at first with the legendary Austrian mountaineer, Heinrich Harrer (author of Seven Years in Tibet), Philip Temple made the first ascent of the Carstensz Pyramide, which has come to be regarded as the technically most difficult of the ‘Seven Summits of the Seven Continents’. Later he was the last to witness the tool-making rituals of a stone-age culture before it was overtaken by the modern world. Facing daunting physical odds, he went on to explore a swathe of unmapped central New Guinea highlands, and he risked his life to recover the human remains from a US aircraft that had crashed on a sheer mountain face.

Copiously illustrated, Philip Temple’s narrative is one of the great stories from the classical age of exploration. Dramatic, humorous and colourful, it is also a valuable anthropological record, for he tells of living among the Dani people before their primitive way of life was overtaken by the outside world.

The explorations were original. He discovers a plane shot down during World War II and he witnesses ‘probably the last rites of genuinely stone-age culture’. All these years later it makes a fascinating story ... distance provides a clearer view of the value of the adventure, now that so much of what he witnessed and experienced is changed or gone. NZ Herald.

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  • Seller location: Queenstown, Otago, NZ

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