By Michael McRae
The tale of the hunt for a real-life Shangri-La within the darkest center of the Himalayas– a century-long obsession to arrive the sacred hidden heart of 1 of the world's final uncharted realms.
At the a long way jap finish of the Himalayas in Tibet lies the Tsangpo River Gorge, referred to as “the nice romance of geography” in the course of the 19th century's golden age of exploration. the following the strong Tsangpo funnels into an impenetrable canyon 3 miles deep, walled off from the skin international via twenty-five thousand foot peaks. just like the earthly paradise of Shangri-La immortalized in James Hilton's vintage 1933 novel Lost Horizon, the Tsangpo River Gorge is a safe haven respected for hundreds of years through Tibetan Buddhists–and later in Western imagination–as a sanctuary in instances of strife in addition to a gateway to nirvana.
The Siege of Shangri-La tells the tale of this fabled land's exploration as either a geographical and non secular destination–and chronicles the invention on the finish of the final millennium of the reality at the back of the myths and rumors approximately it. Veteran journalist Michael McRae lines the gorge's exploratory background from the clandestine missions of surveyor-spies known as pundits and botanical expeditions of naturalists within the early 20th century to the hot investigations of students, adventurers, and pilgrims looking the "Hidden Falls," of the Tsangpo, which purportedly opponents Niagara in dimension and serves because the gateway to paradise. each one explorer's narrative offers expanding proof of why the gorge has been mythologized in jap and Western lore as one of many world's such a lot attractive blanks at the map–and a preferrred attempt of human will.
Taking readers on a guided travel of the gorge's panorama, actual and metaphysical, McRae offers an insightful examine the pursuit of glory and enlightenment that has performed out during this mysterious land with occasionally disastrous effects. The Siege of Shangri-La is an interesting trip in the course of the internal recesses of a distant, mystical international and the minds of these who've tried to arrive it.