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Saving the Ghost of the Mountain: An Expedition Among Snow Leopards in Mongolia (Library Binding)
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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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