Table of Contents


Crag Profile: Red Rock

For nearly four decades Joanne Urioste has explored a realm of lizard men and mystics, punk-music-blaring purists and taciturn bolters—all the while creating her own cathedral-like routes. The Queen of Aztec Sandstone unveils Red Rock, while Joe Herbst, Larry Hamilton, Phil Broscovak, Paul Van Betten, Josh Thompson and Tom Moulin offer their own takes on one of the wildest climbing histories in the West.

sharp end

Editor's Note

The climber as storyteller.


climbing life

The Climbing Life

Observations from the field.


First Ascent

Not every eighties climber wore Lycra as just a fashion statement.

Full Value

How "Sketchy Kelly" got his nickname. And how he survived it.

Off Belay

The late, great century of Riccardo Cassin.


Sometimes a bad climbing day leaves you raw. And sometimes, that's a good thing.


A Spanish climber falls ill halfway along a seven-kilometer knife-edge ridge, above 7400 meters, on one of the world's most dangerous mountains. Despite all the left-to-die scandals on other 8000-meter peaks, a group of climbers mobilizes for a heroic rescue attempt.

features content

A Muscular Imagination: Andy Parkin and the Art of Climbing

Each year grades get higher, climbers send faster and a focus on financial return increases. But has the "creative edge" been lost? British writer Ed Douglas travels to the Alps in search of the aesthetic intensity that inspired his youth. Along the way, he encounters Andy Parkin and other artists who continue to expand the limits of the alpine imagination, painting their visions on both canvases and mountainsides.

A Stonemaster Remembered: John Bachar (1957–2009)

When John Bachar passed away this summer, he left behind a legacy of grace and purity, fierce ideals and compassionate friendship. As a result, Peter Croft says, "a whole herd of us went a lot farther than we planned." Herein, some tributes from the friends Bachar inspired.

Things Invisible to See

It's easy to get nostalgic about the early days of Himalayan exploration. But what if they didn't have to be over? Since 2005, with a small number of partners, Joe Puryear has been venturing up difficult, unclimbed peaks in the Asian Ranges—and trying to keep them spotless for the future.

new sharp end

On Belay

First ascents in the Utah desert and along the Antarctic coast push two writers to discover a context far beyond the climbs.