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The Moth and the Mountain

The Moth and the Mountain

Author : Ed Caesar
Publisher : Simon and Schuster
Release : 2020-11-17
Category : History
ISBN : 9781501143397

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Book The Moth and the Mountain Description/Summary:

An extraordinary true story about one man’s attempt to salve the wounds of war and save his own soul through an audacious adventure. In the 1930s, as official government expeditions set their sights on conquering Mount Everest, a little-known World War I veteran named Maurice Wilson conceives his own crazy, beautiful plan: he will fly a plane from England to Everest, crash-land on its lower slopes, then become the first person to reach its summit—all utterly alone. Wilson doesn’t know how to climb. He barely knows how to fly. But he has the right plane, the right equipment, and a deep yearning to achieve his goal. In 1933, he takes off from London in a Gipsy Moth biplane with his course set for the highest mountain on earth. Wilson’s eleven-month journey to Everest is wild: full of twists, turns, and daring. Eventually, in disguise, he sneaks into Tibet. His icy ordeal is just beginning. Wilson is one of the Great War’s heroes, but also one of its victims. His hometown of Bradford in northern England is ripped apart by the fighting. So is his family. He barely survives the war himself. Wilson returns from the conflict unable to cope with the sadness that engulfs him. He begins a years-long trek around the world, burning through marriages and relationships, leaving damaged lives in his wake. When he finally returns to England, nearly a decade after he first left, he finds himself falling in love once more—this time with his best friend’s wife—before depression overcomes him again. He emerges from his funk with a crystalline ambition. He wants to be the first man to stand on top of the world. Wilson believes that Everest can redeem him. This is the tale of an adventurer unlike any you have ever encountered: complex, driven, wry, haunted, and fully alive. He is a man written out of the history books—dismissed as an eccentric, and gossiped about because of rumors of his transvestism. The Moth and the Mountain restores Maurice Wilson to his rightful place in the annals of Everest and tells an unforgettable story about the power of the human spirit in the face of adversity.

The Moth and the Mountain

The Moth and the Mountain

Author : Ed Caesar
Publisher : Avid Reader Press / Simon & Schuster
Release : 2020-11-17
Category : History
ISBN : 9781501143373

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Book The Moth and the Mountain Description/Summary:

“An outstanding book.” —The Wall Street Journal * “Gripping at every turn.” —Outside * “A gem of a book.” —The Guardian * “A hell of a ride.” —The Times (London) An extraordinary true story about one man’s attempt to salve the wounds of war and save his own soul through an audacious adventure. In the 1930s, as official government expeditions set their sights on conquering Mount Everest, a little-known World War I veteran named Maurice Wilson conceives his own crazy, beautiful plan: he will fly a plane from England to Everest, crash-land on its lower slopes, then become the first person to reach its summit—all utterly alone. Wilson doesn’t know how to climb. He barely knows how to fly. But he has the right plane, the right equipment, and a deep yearning to achieve his goal. In 1933, he takes off from London in a Gipsy Moth biplane with his course set for the highest mountain on earth. Wilson’s eleven-month journey to Everest is wild: full of twists, turns, and daring. Eventually, in disguise, he sneaks into Tibet. His icy ordeal is just beginning. Wilson is one of the Great War’s heroes, but also one of its victims. His hometown of Bradford in northern England is ripped apart by the fighting. So is his family. He barely survives the war himself. Wilson returns from the conflict unable to cope with the sadness that engulfs him. He begins a years-long trek around the world, burning through marriages and relationships, leaving damaged lives in his wake. When he finally returns to England, nearly a decade after he first left, he finds himself falling in love once more—this time with his best friend’s wife—before depression overcomes him again. He emerges from his funk with a crystalline ambition. He wants to be the first man to stand on top of the world. Wilson believes that Everest can redeem him. This is the tale of an adventurer unlike any you have ever encountered: complex, driven, wry, haunted, and fully alive. He is a man written out of the history books—dismissed as an eccentric, and gossiped about because of rumors of his transvestism. The Moth and the Mountain restores Maurice Wilson to his rightful place in the annals of Everest and tells an unforgettable story about the power of the human spirit in the face of adversity.

The Moth and the Mountain

The Moth and the Mountain

Author : Ed Caesar
Publisher : Penguin UK
Release : 2020-11-12
Category : Biography & Autobiography
ISBN : 9780241977248

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Book The Moth and the Mountain Description/Summary:

'One of the best books ever written about the early attempts to conquer Everest. A fine, fine slice of history by a truly special writer who proves time and time again that he is among the best of his generation' Dan Jones, author of The Plantagenets 'A small classic of the biographer's art' Sunday Times The untold story of Britain's most mysterious mountaineering legend - Maurice Wilson - and his heroic attempt to climb Everest. Alone. In the 1930s, as official government expeditions set their sights on conquering Everest, a little-known World War I veteran named Maurice Wilson conceived his own crazy, beautiful plan: he would fly a Gipsy Moth aeroplane from England to Everest, crash land on its lower slopes, then become the first person to reach its summit - all utterly alone. Wilson didn't know how to climb. He barely knew how to fly. But he had pluck, daring and a vision - he wanted to be the first man to stand on top of the world. Maurice Wilson is a man written out of the history books - dismissed as an eccentric and a charlatan by many, but held in the highest regard by world class mountaineers such as Reinhold Messner. The Moth and the Mountain restores him to his rightful place in the annals of Everest and in doing so attempts to answer that perennial question - why do we climb mountains? 'A towering, tragic tale rescued from oblivion by Ed Caesar's magnificent writing' Dan Snow 'This bonkers ripping yarn of derring-don't is a hell of a ride' The Times 'It's hard to imagine a finer tribute to one of Everest's forgotten heroes' Elizabeth Day

Sacred Summits

Sacred Summits

Author : Peter Boardman
Publisher : Vertebrate Publishing
Release : 2013-10-01
Category : Sports & Recreation
ISBN : 9781906148775

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Book Sacred Summits Description/Summary:

Mountaintops have long been seen as sacred places, home to gods and dreams. In one climbing year Peter Boardman visited three very different sacred mountains. He began on the South Face of the Carstensz Pyramid in New Guinea. This is the highest point between the Andes and the Himalaya, and one of the most inaccessible, rising above thick jungle inhabited by warring Stone Age tribes. During the spring Boardman made a four-man, oxygen-free attempt on the world's third highest peak, Kangchenjunga. Hurricane-force winds beat back their first two bids on the unclimbed North Ridge, but they eventually stood within feet of the summit – leaving the final few yards untrodden in deference to the inhabiting deity. In October, he climbed the mountain most sacred to the Sherpas: the twin-summited Gauri Sankar. Renowned for its technical difficulty and spectacular profile, it is aptly dubbed the Eiger of the Himalaya and Boardman's first ascent took a gruelling twenty-three days. Three sacred mountains, three very different expeditions, all superbly captured by Boardman in Sacred Summits, his second book, first published shortly after his death in 1982. Combining the excitement of extreme climbing with acute observation of life in the mountains, this is an amusing, dramatic, poignant and thought-provoking book. Peter Boardman and Joe Tasker died on Everest in 1982, whilst attempting a new and unclimbed line. Both men were superb mountaineers and talented writers. Their literary legacy lives on through the Boardman Tasker Prize for Mountain Literature, established by family and friends in 1983 and presented annually to the author or co-authors of an original work which has made an outstanding contribution to mountain literature.

I'll Climb Mount Everest Alone

I ll Climb Mount Everest Alone

Author : Dennis Roberts
Publisher : Faber & Faber
Release : 2013-12-19
Category : Biography & Autobiography
ISBN : 9780571306701

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Book I'll Climb Mount Everest Alone Description/Summary:

This is a sad, strange and touchingly heroic book. It tells of a mad, misguided adventure: one man's attempt to conquer Mount Everest. Maurice Wilson belonged to the 'lost generation'. He fought in the First World War, winning the Military Cross, but found the transition to civilian life difficult. He led a restless, rootless life and suffered ill-health. This changed mysteriously in 1932 when through, it would seem, a combination of prayer and fasting he cured himself. His Mount Everest ambitions started to take shape. They could not have been more ambitious. His odyssey was to begin in Britain. He bought himself an airplane. He couldn't fly, was a poor student, but finally learnt the rudiments. Despite all the odds, and much official obstruction, he managed to fly to India. More obstacles followed, but on 21 March, 1934 Maurice Wilson and three Sherpas slipped out of Darjeeling disguises as Buddhist monks. Wilson's first attempt on Mount Everest was solo. It failed. He tried again this time with the three Sherpas. They made better progress initially. From the base camp, Wilson made two more attempts on the final ascent. A year later Eric Shipton's reconnaissance party found his body at the approaches to the North Col. They also found his diary: the final entry read, 'Off again, gorgeous day.' The diary provides an astonishing record of persistence, courage, and a faith that never wavered in the face of appalling hardship and adversity. Although this is a chronicle of failure, the achievement can still be marvelled at. Here was a man with no flying or mountaineering experience whatsoever who managed to fly from Britain to India and then nearly conquers Mount Everest : there are even those who speculate he might have done so but even without that fanciful embellishment it is an extraordinary story. This book, first published in 1957, has been out of print for a very long time. Its renewed availability will delight not just those interested in mountaineering but also connoisseurs of adventure stories.

Keeper of the Mountains

Keeper of the Mountains

Author : Bernadette McDonald
Publisher : Rocky Mountain Books Ltd
Release : 2012-10-15
Category : Sports & Recreation
ISBN : 9781927330166

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Book Keeper of the Mountains Description/Summary:

Beginning in 1946, Elizabeth Hawley worked for Fortune magazine as a researcher. Shortly thereafter, she left both her job and the United States itself to travel the world, and thus began her lifelong attraction to the exotic and remote sovereign state of Nepal. In the years that followed, she began reporting on the political and cultural events taking place in her adopted homeland for the likes of Reuters and Time Inc., letting the world in on the strange community of mountaineers, pilgrims and politicians who were descending on Kathmandu, whether in search of adventure, enlightenment or prestige. Despite the fact that Elizabeth Hawley has never climbed a mountain or visited the hallowed grounds of Everest base camp, she has become the most important record keeper and inspirational authority figure regarding the expeditions, stories, feats, scandals and disasters in the Nepal Himalaya. Now 90 years of age, she has commanded the respect of such legendary personalities as Edmund Hillary, Reinhold Messner, Chris Bonington, Tomaž Humar and Ed Viesturs. With production under way on a film examining her life and legacy, it is likely that Hawley will continue to hold a special place in the hearts and minds of all visitors looking to experience the legend and grandeur of the world’s most celebrated mountain landscape.

Himalaya: A Human History

Himalaya  A Human History

Author : Ed Douglas
Publisher : W. W. Norton & Company
Release : 2021-01-05
Category : History
ISBN : 9780393542004

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Book Himalaya: A Human History Description/Summary:

A magisterial history of the Himalaya: an epic story of peoples, cultures, and adventures among the world’s highest mountains. For centuries, the unique and astonishing geography of the Himalaya has attracted those in search of spiritual and literal elevation: pilgrims, adventurers, and mountaineers seeking to test themselves among the world’s most spectacular and challenging peaks. But far from being wild and barren, the Himalaya has been home to a diversity of indigenous and local cultures, a crucible of world religions, a crossroads for trade, and a meeting point and conflict zone for empires past and present. In this landmark work, nearly two decades in the making, Ed Douglas makes a thrilling case for the Himalaya’s importance in global history and offers a soaring account of life at the "roof of the world." Spanning millennia, from the earliest inhabitants to the present conflicts over Tibet and Everest, Himalaya explores history, culture, climate, geography, and politics. Douglas profiles the great kings of Kathmandu and Nepal; he describes the architects who built the towering white Stupas that distinguish Himalayan architecture; and he traces the flourishing evolution of Hinduism, Islam, and Buddhism that brought Himalayan spirituality to the world. He also depicts with great drama the story of how the East India Company grappled for dominance with China’s emperors, how India fought Mao’s Communists, and how mass tourism and ecological transformation are obscuring the bloody legacy of the Cold War. Himalaya is history written on the grandest yet also the most human scale—encompassing geology and genetics, botany and art, and bursting with stories of courage and resourcefulness.

Into the Silence

Into the Silence

Author : Wade Davis
Publisher : Vintage
Release : 2011-10-18
Category : History
ISBN : 9780307700568

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Book Into the Silence Description/Summary:

The definitive story of the British adventurers who survived the trenches of World War I and went on to risk their lives climbing Mount Everest. On June 6, 1924, two men set out from a camp perched at 23,000 feet on an ice ledge just below the lip of Everest’s North Col. George Mallory, thirty-seven, was Britain’s finest climber. Sandy Irvine was a twenty-two-year-old Oxford scholar with little previous mountaineering experience. Neither of them returned. Drawing on more than a decade of prodigious research, bestselling author and explorer Wade Davis vividly re-creates the heroic efforts of Mallory and his fellow climbers, setting their significant achievements in sweeping historical context: from Britain’s nineteen-century imperial ambitions to the war that shaped Mallory’s generation. Theirs was a country broken, and the Everest expeditions emerged as a powerful symbol of national redemption and hope. In Davis’s rich exploration, he creates a timeless portrait of these remarkable men and their extraordinary times.

Detectives on Everest

Detectives on Everest

Author : Jochen Hemmleb,Eric R. Simonson,Dave Hahn
Publisher : Unknown
Release : 2002
Category : Sports & Recreation
ISBN : 0898868718

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Book Detectives on Everest Description/Summary:

Discusses new discoveries and artifacts found on the Mallory & Irvine Research Expedition's 2001 follow-up journey to Everest in search of new information on the fate of Andrew Irvine.

The Next Everest

The Next Everest

Author : Jim Davidson
Publisher : St. Martin's Press
Release : 2021-04-20
Category : Biography & Autobiography
ISBN : 9781250272300

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Book The Next Everest Description/Summary:

A dramatic account of the deadly avalanche on Everest—and a return to reach the summit. On April 25, 2015, Jim Davidson was climbing Mount Everest when a 7.8-magnitude earthquake released avalanches all around him and his team, destroying their only escape route and trapping them at nearly 20,000 feet. It was the largest earthquake in Nepal in eighty-one years and killed nearly 8,900 people. That day also became the deadliest in the history of Everest, with eighteen people losing their lives on the mountain. After spending two unsettling days stranded on Everest, Davidson's team was rescued by helicopter. The experience left him shaken, and despite his thirty-three years of climbing and serving as an expedition leader, he wasn’t sure that he would ever go back. But in the face of risk and uncertainty, he returned in 2017 and finally achieved his dream of reaching the summit. Suspenseful and engrossing, The Next Everest portrays the experience of living through the biggest disaster to ever hit the mountain. Davidson's background in geology and environmental science makes him uniquely qualified to explain why the seismic threats lurking beneath Nepal are even greater today. But this story is not about “conquering” the world’s highest peak. Instead, it reveals how embracing change, challenge, and uncertainty prepares anyone to face their next “Everest” in life.

The Mistress of Paris

The Mistress of Paris

Author : Catherine Hewitt
Publisher : Macmillan
Release : 2017-01-24
Category : Biography & Autobiography
ISBN : 9781250120663

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Book The Mistress of Paris Description/Summary:

"Comtesse Valtesse de la Bigne was a celebrated nineteenth-century Parisian courtesan. She was painted by Manet and inspired Emile Zola, who immortalized her in his scandalous novel Nana. Her rumored affairs with Napoleon III and the future Edward VII kept gossip columns full. But her glamorous existence hid a dark secret: she was no Comtesse. She was born into abject poverty, raised on a squalid Paris backstreet; the lowest of the low. Yet she transformed herself into an enchantress who possessed a small fortune, three mansions, fabulous carriages, and art that drew the envy of connoisseurs across France and Europe. A consummate show-woman, she ensured that her life--and even her death--remained shrouded in just enough mystery to keep her audience hungry for more. Catherine Hewitt's biography, The Mistress of Paris, tells the forgotten story of a remarkable French woman who, though her roots were lowly, never stopped aiming high."--Provided by publisher.

Mountain Climber

Mountain Climber

Author : Bill Katra
Publisher : McFarland
Release : 2020-02-07
Category : Sports & Recreation
ISBN : 9781476637785

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Book Mountain Climber Description/Summary:

Nearing his sixth decade as a dedicated climber, William "Bill" Katra describes himself as "not a great climber, but a persistent one." In his memoir, the author details his climbs in vivid detail, describing some of the world's most popular routes while emphasizing that scenic beauty is as important to a hike as technical difficulty. From his early partner-belayed adventures to his more recent unassisted solo "scamper-climbs," Bill's techniques have evolved, but his love for the experience remains steadfast. Within recent years, Bill has again summited a few climbs from his younger days, often reflecting on where senior climbers fit in the sport's changing social--and environmental--landscape. This memoir is a relatable and nostalgic account of a life well-spent in nature, as the author muses on his long-past adventures enriched and nurtured by the wisdom of the present.

Erebus

Erebus

Author : Michael Palin
Publisher : Greystone Books Ltd
Release : 2018-09-25
Category : History
ISBN : 9781771644426

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Book Erebus Description/Summary:

Driven by a passion for travel and history and a love of ships and the sea, former Monty Python stalwart and beloved television globe-trotter Michael Palin explores the world of HMS Erebus, last seen on an ill-fated voyage to chart the Northwest Passage. Michael Palin brings the fascinating story of the Erebus and its occupants to life, from its construction as a bomb vessel in 1826 through the flagship years of James Clark Ross’s Antarctic expedition and finally to Sir John Franklin’s quest for the holy grail of navigation—a route through the Northwest Passage, where the ship disappeared into the depths of the sea for more than 150 years. It was rediscovered under the arctic waters in 2014. Palin travels across the world—from Tasmania to the Falkland Islands and the Canadian Arctic—to offer a firsthand account of the terrain and conditions that would have confronted the Erebus and her doomed final crew. Delving into the research, he describes the intertwined careers of the two men who shared the ship’s journeys: Ross, the organizational genius who mapped much of the Antarctic coastline and oversaw some of the earliest scientific experiments to be conducted there; and Franklin, who, at the age of sixty and after a checkered career, commanded the ship on its last disastrous venture. Expertly researched and illustrated with maps, photographs, paintings, and engravings, Erebus is an evocative account of two journeys: one successful and forgotten, the other tragic yet unforgettable.

Dynasty

Dynasty

Author : Tom Holland
Publisher : Anchor
Release : 2015-10-20
Category : History
ISBN : 9780385537902

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Book Dynasty Description/Summary:

Author and historian Tom Holland returns to his roots in Roman history and the audience he cultivated with Rubicon—his masterful, witty, brilliantly researched popular history of the fall of the Roman republic—with Dynasty, a luridly fascinating history of the reign of the first five Roman emperors. Dynasty continues Rubicon's story, opening where that book ended: with the murder of Julius Caesar. This is the period of the first and perhaps greatest Roman Emperors and it's a colorful story of rule and ruination, running from the rise of Augustus through to the death of Nero. Holland's expansive history also has distinct shades of I Claudius, with five wonderfully vivid (and in three cases, thoroughly depraved) Emperors—Augustus, Tiberius, Caligula, Claudius, and Nero—featured, along with numerous fascinating secondary characters. Intrigue, murder, naked ambition and treachery, greed, gluttony, lust, incest, pageantry, decadence—the tale of these five Caesars continues to cast a mesmerizing spell across the millennia.

Wildest Dream

Wildest Dream

Author : Peter Gillman,Leni Gillman
Publisher : The Mountaineers Books
Release : 2001-09-14
Category : Biography & Autobiography
ISBN : 9781594854736

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Book Wildest Dream Description/Summary:

* Chronicles all three of Mallory's Everest expeditions * Illuminates how Mallory reconciled his ambitions on Everest with his unquestioned love for his wife and family Since the discovery in 1999 of George Mallory's body on Everest, controversy has raged over whether Mallory and Andrew Irvine could have summitted the mountain. Every detail of the climb has been dissected and Mallory's skill as a mountaineer has been hotly debated. Observing the debate, Peter and Leni Gillman felt that the essence of who Mallory was as an individual had been lost. In The Wildest Dream they offer the most comprehensive biography ever written about one of the 20th century's most intriguing personalities. Exploring Mallory's early years, the Gillmans take the reader to Cambridge and Bloomsbury where Mallory consorted with some of the most colorful literary and artistic figures of Edwardian England: Rupert Brooke, James and Lytton Strachey, Maynard and Geoffrey Keynes, and Duncan Grant, among others. The Wildest Dream moves on to examine exactly what Mallory accomplished as a climber, evaluating the quality of his routes and skills within the context of climbing in the early 1900s. At the heart of this biography, and of Mallory's life, is his wife, Ruth. The letters they exchanged during the many separations caused by World War I and three Everest expeditions reveal the depth of their commitment to each other and the unwavering support and strength Ruth offered George. The Everest expeditions are also insightfully rendered, offering perspective on criticisms levied at Mallory after the 1921 and 1922 attempts. The authors examine how Mallory, a dedicated husband and father, arrived at his fateful decision to participate in the doomed 1924 expedition and why he continued to press for a summit attempt when the odds seemed stacked against him. As Mallory once declared, a climber was what he was, and this is what climbers did; this was how they fulfilled their wildest dreams.

ON TOP OF WORLD

ON TOP OF WORLD

Author : Arjun Vajpai
Publisher : Penguin UK
Release : 2010-11-10
Category : Literary Collections
ISBN : 9788184753042

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Book ON TOP OF WORLD Description/Summary:

‘There was a statue of the Buddha at the summit; placed there by the Sherpas. I knelt down and bowed in front of it. I felt complete. When I looked around I felt I ruled the world; with the Himalayas stretching out below me and nothing to obstruct my view.’ A month after he had set out; sixteen-year-old Arjun Vajpai stood on top of the world; having conquered Mount Everest. At that time he was the youngest non-Sherpa person in the world to do so. He remains the youngest Indian to have climbed the peak. It had indeed been a long journey. Arjun’s fascination with mountains began at the age of ten; nurtured and encouraged by his parents; teachers; and close friends. As a trekker and an athlete; he had trained and worked hard to achieve this amazing feat of endurance. This is Arjun’s story in his own words. Accompany him on an adventure of a lifetime; read about his incredible ascent; and learn what it takes to be a mountaineer. On Top of the World is an unforgettable story of inspiration; fortitude and courage; of having a seemingly impossible dream and daring to chase it.

GrowVeg

GrowVeg

Author : Benedict Vanheems
Publisher : Storey Publishing
Release : 2021-03-02
Category : Gardening
ISBN : 9781635862935

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Book GrowVeg Description/Summary:

For anyone who has ever wanted to tend a little piece of ground but wasn’t sure where to begin, GrowVeg offers simple recipes for gardening projects that are both attainable and beautiful. Benedict Vanheems, editor of the popular website GrowVeg.com, guides aspiring green thumbs to success from the start, no matter what size gardening space you have. Get recommendations for veggie varieties for your first edible garden, plant a miniature orchard, and grow an edible archway, or keep your efforts contained by cultivating a rustic crate of herbs on a sunny balcony, a crop of carrots in a basket, or nutritious and delicious sprouts in a jar on the kitchen counter. The beginner-friendly instructions and step-by-step photography detail more than 30 approachable, small-scale gardening projects that will inspire and empower you to get growing!

YOSEMITE IN THE SIXTIES

YOSEMITE IN THE SIXTIES

Author : Glenn Denny
Publisher : Patagonia
Release : 2013-10-06
Category : Sports & Recreation
ISBN : 9781938340147

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Book YOSEMITE IN THE SIXTIES Description/Summary:

The sheer granite walls of Yosemite Valley galvanized a dedicated group of rock climbers in the 1960s, who saw the nearly holdless, glacier-polished faces as the purest form of challenge. The awesome Half Dome and El Capitan were first climbed in the late 1950s, ushering in a new era of rock climbing later known as the golden age of Yosemite climbing. During this era, the climbers of the sixties developed the techniques, tools, and philosophies that made Yosemite the most influential rock climbing arena in the world. In the spirit of the social changes of the sixties, a small group of committed climbers dropped out of mainstream work and society and took up residence in Camp 4, perfecting their skills and developing a unique social scene. This austere, boulder-strewn campground became the epicenter of the climbing world. It served both as a launching pad for spectacular feats and adventures and a refuge from them. Here plans were made, teams were formed, and the rest of life was lived. The significance of Camp 4 was recently recognized with its placement on the National Register of Historic Places.

The Impossible Climb

The Impossible Climb

Author : Mark Synnott
Publisher : Dutton
Release : 2019-03-05
Category : Sports & Recreation
ISBN : 9781101986646

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Book The Impossible Climb Description/Summary:

"One of the most compelling accounts of a climb and the climbing ethos that I've ever read." --Sebastian Junger The Impossible Climb climaxes with Alex Honnold's unprecedented, almost unimaginable feat: a 3,000-foot vertical climb up El Capitan in Yosemite, without a rope. Mark Synnott tells the story in the context of a deeply reported account of his ten-year friendship with Honnold, multiple climbing expeditions, and the climbing ethos they share. The climbing community had long considered a "free solo" ascent of El Capitan an impossible feat so far beyond human limits that it was not worth thinking about. When Alex Honnold topped out at 9:28 am on June 3, 2017, having spent fewer than four hours on his historic ascent, the world gave a collective gasp. His friend Tommy Caldwell, who free climbed (with a rope) the nearby Dawn Wall in 2015, called Alex's ascent "the moon landing of free soloing." The New York Times described it as "one of the great athletic feats of any kind, ever." It was "almost unbearable to watch," writes Synnott. This majestic work of personal history delves into a raggedy culture that emerged decades earlier during Yosemite's Golden Age, when pioneering climbers like Royal Robbins and Warren Harding invented the sport that Honnold would turn on its ear. Synnott paints an authentic, wry portrait of climbing history, profiling Yosemite heroes John Bachar, Peter Croft, Dean Potter, and the harlequin tribe of climbers known as the Stonemasters. A veteran of the North Face climbing team and contributor to National Geographic, Synnott weaves in his own amateur and professional experiences with poignant insight and wit. Tensions burst on the mile-high northwest face of Pakistan's Great Trango Tower; photographer/climber Jimmy Chin miraculously persuades an intransigent official in the Borneo jungle to allow Honnold's first foreign expedition, led by Synnott, to continue; armed bandits accost the same trio at the foot of a tower in the Chad desert . . . The Impossible Climb is an emotional drama driven by people exploring the limits of human potential and seeking a perfect, dialed-in dance with nature. They dare beyond the ordinary, but this story of the sublime is really about all of us. Who doesn't need to face down fear and make the most of the time we have?