Following a grueling climb up Kanchenjunga, Hong-gil and Mu-taek become fast friends and partners in climb. The peak of their professional careers comes when they become the 14th team to scale the Himalayas. But the climb came at a price: both sustained injuries and Hong-gil was compelled to retire. Years later, Hong-gil is a renowned lecturer and Mu-taek takes up an assignment to go up Everest. When Hong-gil learns that Mu-taek has gone missing, he blames himself for encouraging the younger man's plans. Looking at a photo of Mu-taek's frozen corpse still trapped on the mountain, he decides to put together a rescue team to retrieve the body. Despite warnings, concerns over his injured leg and treacherous storms, Hong-gil leads the expedition.