Himalayan Journey, by John Thomas, illustrated by Edwin Lambert
Published by the British Overseas Railways Journal in 2010, 46 pages. Booklet - c.16cm by 23.5cm (N5825PE)
From the introduction, written by the author in 1944: When the broad gauge trains of the Bengal and Assam Railway arrive at Siliguri from Calcutta they find themselves more or less against a stone wall. The tremendous barrier of the Himalayas strides across the horizon apparently barring all further progress. It is left to the little, vest-pocket trains of the Darjeeling Himalayan Railway to batter their way up fiftyone miles of this wall to Darjeeling-famous base town of the Everesters.
A journey on the Darjeeling Himalayan Railway is one of the world's greatest travel thrills. Within six hours the little trains (they are scarcely bigger than those sometimes seen in British fairgrounds) whisk you into a new world. From the vast, Gangetic plain, with its bamboos and paddy and brown Bengalees you are rocketed to a land of Nepalese, Tibetans and Buddhist temples.
The track begins in the deadly, malarial Terai with its tangle of animal infested jungle, and twists and spirals upwards to the threshold of The Snows. Every thousand feet gained in altitude sees variations in climate and geography which would require many hundreds of miles of travel on the flat to produce. The distance between tropical Asia and the temperate Mediterranean lands is accounted for by this little mountain train in four thousand feet of continuous climbing. Heavy, tropical foliage gives place to homely oaks and rhododendrons. Inside six hours a steamy Indian summer becomes a fresh English spring.
Nowhere else in the world is there a journey like, this. And no journey anywhere has so dramatic a climax. The end of the trip brings you face to face with the greatest mountain mass in the world. Across your field of view stretches a vast array of glittering, white peaks, among them the highest peaks known. Beyond them is the mysterious tableland of Tibet.
"Himalayan Journey" is the record of an ascent of the Himalayas by train. If you are interested in Indian travel, and if you feel like reading about the Himalayas from a new angle you will find plenty to entertain you in these pages. If you hope some time to make the trip on the mountain railway you will find the book a useful guide", for all essential travel information is woven into the narrative. If you have already made the trip you will find the book makes a compact and original souvenir of your adventure.
The booklet is illustrated throughout with several black and white line drawings
The condition of the booklet is generally very good. The cover has one or two minor scuffs and blemishes, and some light nibbling and wear along the edges and corners, but the staple spine is intact and all pages are clean, intact, unblemished and tightly bound. There is a small price sticker on the rear side cover