The Splendor of Solitude

I have been thinking a lot lately about Uemura Naomi. 

Uemura is considered the first person to reach the North Pole by himself, to raft down the Amazon by himself, and to climb Denali by himself. 

He was part of a community of adventurers, of climbers, but he did many of his excursions alone. He wrote, in what’s become his most famous quote: “In all the splendor of solitude… it is a test of myself, and one thing I loathe is to have to test myself in front of other people.” 

Uemura disappeared in 1984 while climbing Denali in the winter. We know he reached the summit, but his radio signal was lost on the descent. Normally a search party would have been sent sooner, but the community of climbers who knew him felt it would be disrespectful to do so. His body has never been found. 

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