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Touching the Void

The true story of two climbers and their perilous journey up the west face of Siula Grande in the Peruvian Andes in 1985, TOUCHING THE VOID contemplates life, death, guilt and perseverance as one man defeats the greatest of odds.

Director: Kevin Macdonald
Year: 2003
Time: 106 min

 Touching the Void
(2003) on IMDb

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Ways to Influence

Share this film. Give other the chance to learn from its story.

Read one of Joe Simpson’s books. After publishing Touching the Void, he wrote many other books, including Storms of Silence and The Sound of Gravity.

Read one of Simon Yates books. His autobiography – Against the Wall – was published in 1997, and he has since released two additional books: The Flame of Adventure and The Wild Within.

Join the international community of Leave No Trace Center for Outdoor Ethics , a community working for sustaining the health of our planet by teaching the best possible practices when delving into the great outdoors. 

Learn more about UIAA, the International Climbing and Mountaineering Federation, that aims to “promote the growth and protection of mountaineering and climbing worldwide.”

Related Articles and Resources

Interview With Kevin MacDonald

“I’ll never forget the look on Simpson’s face when he saw the spot where Yates had discovered him on that dark, snowy night in 1985. It was as though he had seen his own ghost. From that moment on Simpson was clearly caught in his own private nightmare, experiencing flashbacks and panic attacks. To make matters worse – much worse – I was asking him to relive scenes from his ordeal for my reconstructions.”

Read the full interview on The Guardian..

The Danger Is the the Attraction

“The climbers of Glen Coe seem to be in accord: the mountains are dangerous, climbing is dangerous – but that’s part of the attraction, and death and tragedy are, sadly, part and parcel of the thrill of mountaineering. ”

Continue reading here.

Joe Simpson Interview: ‘I’m Not An Easy Person To Be With’

“As his new book hits the shelves, Joe Simpson, author of ‘Touching the Void’, talks about guilt, loss and survival, and why falling in love has finally mellowed him.

The man who cheated death on a mountain isn’t going to pander to anyone’s expectations about how loneliness has eaten into his soul.”

Read the article on The Telegraph.

Dark Side of the Climber Mind

“Last year, when I pitched the idea of a depression/ obsession-themed issue to our publisher, he balked. ‘We need to give people something to read,’ he said. ‘Not a reason to jump out the window.’ He had a point. I climb, you climb — we climb — to escape pain, loss, illness, and stress. Climbing is an out, and it’s a great one at that. But you have to return home at the end of the day, and home is where the head is.”

Read the full article on Climbing.

10 Incredible Climber Survival Stories

“Taking on the world’s highest peaks is an adrenaline-filled activity fraught with danger, and the lure of the summit can drive mountaineers to push themselves and achieve great things.”

Continue reading here.

No Guts, No Glory? The Fear and Attraction Of Risky Winter Sports

Read the article from Scientific America.

Top 10 Climbs

“In Mongolia, it’s easy for a traveler to be quickly swept away by the endless green steppes, the heartiness of the Kazakh nomads, and the rolling landscapes that define the Altai Mountains. This makes the trek to Mount Khuiten as enjoyable and scenic as the climb itself.”

National Geographic lists the worlds top 10 climbs here.


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