The Paw Print
The Hunza Valley located in northern Pakistan would be the ideal setting for the upbringing of a world famous climber. The jagged 20,000 ft. peaks that surround the valley are perfect for the training and lead up to the ascent of the big brother Mountains, Everest and K2.
Nazir Sabir could definitely be placed within the category of being a product of his environment. His home the Hunza Valley is the only place in the world where every mountain that overshadows the villages below are or above 20,000 ft.
Often when we think of famous individuals, we simply think about their accomplishment.
When it comes to Nazir Sabir, most fans would just praise him for his triumphant success of being the first man from Pakistan to ever reach the top of Mount Everest and K2.
What we do not realize or even think about is the adventure of the journey to top. The perilous trek that took more mental drive than anything on this Earth, will always be overshadowed by the finish, the prize.
In Nazir’s case, could the journey be the grand prize, and the reaching of the top just be the small token of pride.
“The man on the mountain did not just fall there.” The journey is what makes the individual; it is where the hardships lie, and where the self-pleasure is chiseled into eternity.
When growing up in the Hunza Valley, Sabir was always hoping for a better life on the other side of the mountains that surrounded him. Would he know that the better life that he constantly dreamed of was at the top of those mountains?
Over the course Nazir’s career, he lost a total of 58 friends and partners to the ruthless mountains. Why would he not quit and just return to the normal life 20,000 ft. below?
“What takes me back every time is the spiritual journey,” said Sabir. His strong Muslim faith adds to his inspiration of scaling the walls of the world. “No Mecca or Mosque brings me closer to the creator than mountains. Every time I reach the top, I will always pray for the souls of all those who died. “ He accepts the fact that nature has accepted him living while all the other souls of his friends are lingering around the top.
Sabir’s metaphors of the mountains such as “the sleeping beauty,” “the rocky towers,” show the huge amount of respect that he gives to the colossal fortitudes.
“There is no more beautiful sight than seeing the full moon playing hide and seek on the top of the mountain. It as if I was meant to observe the full moon on the high places in the world.”
The death threats that the mountains sent down upon Nazir time after time would not stop him from accomplishing his mission.
Not only does he embark on the journeys for himself but also he starts them for his friends that have died trying to reach the same heights of the world. “Climbing mountains is almost addicting but it is also humbling.”