Saving the Ghost of the Mountain

An Expedition Among Snow Leopards in Mongolia

By Montgomery, Sy

Publishers Summary:
People call it “The Ghost of the Mountain,” for those who live among snow leopards almost never see one. Beautiful spotted coats conceal these elusive cats in their rocky, high-altitude habitat—a place where temperatures are often cold enough to freeze human tears. A thick, long tail for balance helps snow leopards spring at their prey from great distances—prey that is often three times its own size. Slinking along the Mongolian mountain ridges, the snow leopards are invisible—and almost impossible to study. But that doesn’t deter scientist Tom McCarthy, Conservation Director of the Seattle-based Snow Leopard Trust, or his many colleagues from dedicating their lives’ work to the study and protection of this seldom-seen creature. And it doesn’t stop Sy Montgomery and Nic Bishop from packing their bags in order to join Tom on a trek to Mongolia, where they hope to learn more about this magical cat, a cat who doesn’t give up its secrets easily. It will take endurance and persistence to climb the dusty mountain trails, hope of a snow leopard sighting rising and falling with each new summit. It will take practice and experience to lay humane leghold snares, collect scat samples, and set up motion-triggered cameras. It will take patience, focus—and yes, love—to dedicate a lifetime learning more about this little-understood creature. But that’s the only way the Snow Leopard Trust can protect their charges, before the snow leopard truly becomes nothing but a ghost of the mountain. With a dazzling, as-it-happens narrative and spectacular photographs, Sy Montgomery and Nic Bishop bring Mongolia up close for readers everywhere.

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ISBN
978-0-61891-645-0
Publisher
Houghton


REVIEWS

School Library Journal

Reviewed on October 1, 2009

Gr 4-8 Reading this book is an extraordinary experience. It has an elegant layout featuring ornamental lettering, watermarks, and gorgeous photos; were it not for the delightfully exuberant text, it would be a stately coffee table book. But kids will giggle about the central role of scat or, as Montgomery often writes, "poo," in the research of snow leopards' habits. Children will be swept up in the buoyant account of the journey through Mongolia led by Tom McCarthy, conservation director of the Snow Leopard Trust...Log In or Sign Up to Read More

Horn Book Magazine

Reviewed on November 1, 2009

Montgomery and Bishop (Quest for the Tree Kangaroo: An Expedition to the Cloud Forest of New Guinea, rev. 1/07) team up once again, this time for an expedition to remote Mongolia, tagging along with conservationist Tom McCarthy in search of the rare snow leopard. There are so few of these animals, and they are so elusive, it is difficult to count them accurately—which makes it equally difficult to tell if conservation measures are working. In the nature...Log In or Sign Up to Read More

Horn Book Guide

Reviewed on January 1, 2009

Montgomery and Bishop (<i>Quest for the Tree Kangaroo</i>) tag along with conservationist Tom McCarthy in search of the rare snow leo...Log In or Sign Up to Read More

Junior Library Guild

Reviewed on September 1, 2009

When Tom McCarthy, conservation director of the Snow Leopard Trust, began traveling to Central Asia, he quickly learned that in order to save the snow leopard, he must first find a way to change the attitude of the region’s people toward it: “We can study the snow leopards, . . . but the local people are the only ones who can save them.” To this end, McCarthy began enlisting families to join Snow Leopard Enterprises: “[O]nly families who promised not to kill leopards could join. If a leopard was killed in their area, they couldn’t take part in the program.” Saving the Ghost of the...Log In or Sign Up to Read More

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