The Netflix documentary 14 PEAKS chronicles Nepalese mountaineer Nirmal Purja's attempt to summit the world’s 14 highest peaks (all of which stand 8,000m or higher).
Only 19 climbers have completed this challenge, and none have done it in less than seven years – Nirmal aims to conquer all peaks in just seven months.
IS 14 PEAKS WORTH WATCHING?
The documentary begins in April 2019, with Purja attempting Annapurna, statistically the most dangerous climb.
The team successfully summits on 23 April. However, the following day, Purja decides to return up the mountain to help a stricken climber; although the rescue is successful, the climber would die days later.
The rescue meant Purja lost his “weather window” and his plans for the 14 Peaks are thrown into chaos. Nevertheless, behind schedule and questioning himself after the death on Annapurna, Purja pushes on to Everest.
While it's true that over 4000 people have reached the top of Mount Everest since it was first climbed in 1953, it's worth pointing out that 300 climbers have died attempting the feat.
So can Purja achieve the impossible and climb all 14 peaks in record time? You'll have to watch the fascinating documentary to find out.
IS 14 PEAKS WORTH WATCHING?
14 Peaks is an inspiring story of one man's attempt to do the impossible.
It's also a reminder that, in mountaineering, as in life, nothing is guaranteed.
So whether you're a seasoned climber or someone who's never even set foot on a mountain, 14 Peaks is definitely worth watching.
WHO IS NIRMAL PURJA?
Nirmal Purja is a Nepalese mountaineer, former Gurkha, and Special Forces soldier. He was born in the Myagdi district of Nepal and raised in Chitwan, in the country’s flatlands.
Much of Nirmal’s life was spent in the military, initially as a member of the Brigade of Gurkhas – which he joined in 2003. Six years later, he became the first Gurkha to join Britain’s Special Boat Service (SBS) as a cold-weather warfare specialist.
Nirmal's passion for mountaineering grew during his time with the SBS, and in 2012 he did his first significant climb, reaching the top of Lobuche East despite having no previous experience.
In 2018, Nirmal decided to leave the military to focus on his mountaineering career. In the same year, he was made an MBE for his outstanding contributions to high-altitude mountaineering.
The documentary does an excellent job of showing the perils of climbing, from avalanches to dangerous ice crevasses. However, it also left me questioning why anyone would want to put themselves in such peril.
Nirmal Purja is a fearless and inspiring man, and I think his story will motivate people to push themselves to achieve their goals.
I would recommend 14 Peaks to anyone who enjoys adventure documentaries or who is looking for some inspiration.