Picks and Pans Review: The Search for the Yeti

UPDATED 05/29/1989 at 01:00 AM EDT Originally published 05/29/1989 at 01:00 AM EDT

PBS (Mon., May 29, 8 P.M. ET)


Are you geared up for yeti another trek through the Himalayas to find the elusive abominable snowman? Mountaineer Chris Bonington gets permission from the Chinese government to explore a remote area of Tibet, where fellow climber Rheinhold Messner, once skeptical of the abominable one's existence, claims to have encountered the big guy in 1987. Although the three-week search proves futile—how could it not when you bring along 97 yaks with bells on them?—it does provide a nice excuse to see some beautiful, exotic countryside. The expedition isn't without intrigue, since giant, clawlike footprints are found in a snowbank where no man has ever before set foot. Moreover, most of the Tibetans we encounter swear they believe in the yeti, and one man even claims his grandmother lived with one in a cave for six months (she's surely being booked on Geraldo this very minute). The most interesting part of the hour-long Adventure special, however, is the evidence it provides that Tibetan mountain folk have caught on to some of the shabbier commercial ways of the outside world. Says an outraged explorer upon paying for a service, "They're friendly, happy people—then they just shaft you!" Next trek they'll be offering validated yak-parking.

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