Weekly Feature Archives

"As Above, So Below" uses fiction to explore the realities of risk and relationships

Posted October 5, 2018

About four years ago, Chris Kalman found himself struggling with heavy emotions while living with his girlfriend and her father who was dying of cancer. Kalman started writing what became a 103-page novella titled "As Above, So Below." The fictional story weighs on matters of death, grief, risk and family relationships.

The Giri-Giri Boys

Posted September 29, 2018

Ten years ago, in May 2008, an unassuming group of five Japanese climbers who jokingly dubbed themselves the Giri-Giri Boys caught the world's attention for their bold and visionary enchainments in the Alaska Range. This story by Katsutaka Yokoyama about that expedition originally appeared in Alpinist 26 (Spring 2009), simply titled "The Giri-Giri Boys."

Silences at Dawn

Posted September 25, 2018

In this Sharp End essay from Alpinist 63, Editor-in-Chief Katie Ives contemplates the varying meanings of awe as she delves into mountain darkness and solitude in search of peace.

"Honouring High Places": A Lifetime of Exploring "Unforgiving Terrain"

Posted September 14, 2018

"Honouring High Places"—the final book authored by Junko Tabei, who died in 2016 at age 77 and was the first woman to summit Chomolungma (Everest)—is now available and is a finalist for a Banff Book award. Alpinist Assistant Editor Katherine Indermaur writes of the book: "Though there are many lessons to take away from Tabei's life, perhaps the most important is not just how and what she climbed, but also how and what she accomplished as a mountaineer when she wasn't climbing...."

An interview with Suman Dubey about his memories of the 1961 Indian expedition to Nanda Devi

Posted September 13, 2018

With Alpinist 63 and Part II of the Nanda Devi Mountain Profile now on newsstands, we bring you this interview with Suman Dubey, who became a member of the 1961 Indian expedition to the Nanda Devi Sanctuary in India's Garhwal Himalaya when he was an undergraduate student in Delhi. Nanda Devi is a sacred peak significant to locals for embodying Hindu Goddess Nanda, and a difficult one for mountaineers due to its being surrounded by a ring of high peaks that make up the Sanctuary's border.

Safety Means More than a Good Belay

Posted August 27, 2018

American Alpine Club President Deanne Buck and Club CEO Phil Powers share their perspective as to why the results of a recent survey about sexual harassment and sexual assault within climbing communities should be taken seriously by everyone.

Out from the Shadows: Sexual Harassment and Assault in Climbing Communities

Posted August 27, 2018

From April 16 to July 4, in collaboration with other national climbing organizations and magazines, we undertook a survey on the topic of sexual harassment and assault in the climbing world. In this article we share some of the results.

Remembering Tim Auger

Posted August 14, 2018

Tim Auger died on August 9, 2018, in Banff, Alberta, at age 72. The following story is an excerpt from a feature by Brandon Pullan titled "Homage" that appeared in Alpinist 42. Auger was an influential Canadian climber who served Parks Canada for approximately three decades. One of his most famous first ascents was the University Wall on the Chief at Squamish with Dan Tate, Glenn Woodsworth and Hamish Mutch in 1965-66.

A2: The Highest Mountain in the World (1819)

Posted August 10, 2018

In this Mountain Profile essay from Alpinist 62, Stewart Weaver documents the early mapping of Nanda Devi and the initial belief that it was the highest mountain in the world.

A retrospective on the second winter ascent of Nanga Parbat, the heroic rescue and the logistical and financial challenges of helicopter operations in Pakistan

Posted August 7, 2018

Elisabeth Revol and Tomek Mackiewicz completed the second winter ascent of Nanga Parbat in alpine style on January 25, but they got into trouble on the descent as a storm was building. What unfolded over the next several days became a demonstration of heroism and solidarity in the international mountain community, as people from different nations worked together to try to help the stranded climbers. It also raised questions about modern rescues in remote mountains—about the limits of possibilities; about best practices in a digital and increasingly technological age; and about disparities between which groups of people receive the most help.