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Image for article ICEFALL

Icefall tells the gripping true story of a journey to the top of the world - but this is no ordinary Everest book. Young adventurer Alex Staniforth, aged 21, from Chester, embarked on a journey of overcoming adversity to achieve his goal of standing on the world’s highest point. The mountain, however, had very different plans.

Both of his attempts have been marred by tragedy, twice being thwarted by the biggest disasters in Everest history. In 2014 a huge avalanche tragically killed sixteen climbing Sherpas, and the Nepal earthquake in 2015 triggered avalanches and destroyed much of base camp, taking the lives of three Sherpa team-mates. Alex has since raised over £30,000 for the earthquake victims.

Fortunately, Alex has always seen every obstacle as an opportunity in disguise. Aged 9 he had suffered epilepsy, mental health problems, crippling stammering and bullying. But it was the crags of Borrowdale and the fells of the Lake District that first sparked a thirst for achievement, adventure and overcoming limitations.

Alex takes the reader through this inspirational and honest journey from the beginning, detailing his earlier life, training, fundraising, overcoming adversity that we all face, and sharing experiences in the outdoors and majestic Himalaya. Whatever your age or opinion on the modern-day Everest, the lessons shared will help anyone find their own ‘Everest in life’.

While not claiming to follow in the footsteps of Wordsworth, part of Icefall was penned whilst living in Windermere last summer, in a decrepit old caravan. Alex says; “The Lakes has a special place in my heart, a unique warmth that no other mountain range in the UK can quite touch. It was the perfect place to write the book and to this day I still love hillwalking and running in the fells. The mountains are the best escape, and substrate for new ideas – and you never know where they might take you”.

Alex is planning to climb the world’s 6th highest peak, Cho Oyu (8,201m) this Autumn. You can follow his journey at alexstaniforth.com, and pick up your copy of Icefall at George Fisher.

19 September 2016 by George Fisher

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