Documentary: K2 and the Invisible Footmen

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Located on the border between Pakistan and China, K2 is the second-highest mountain on Earth. For many climbers, it’s a greater prize than Everest, with limited routes, a steeper ascent, and a harder push to the summit. Nicknamed the “Savage Mountain,” K2’s peak juts unprotected into the atmosphere, exposing climbers and porters to life-threatening weather conditions. Despite being paid at rates far below those received by international expedition leaders, these porters—who provide critical supplies to expedition base camps and take on higher-altitude tasks in support of ascending climbers—do some of the most difficult and dangerous work. These efforts make them worthy of recognition as the true heroes of mountaineering. A film by Lara Lee.

Film: How Matt Cornell Free Soloed One of America’s Classic Hard Mixed Routes

"The Nutcracker" explores the mental challenges of solo climbing and the tactics Cornell used to help him send the route.