Weekly Feature Archives

Sharing Misadventures, not just Adventures: The Future of Climbing Accidentology

Posted September 24, 2021

"The Future of Alpinism," is the theme of Alpinist 75—which is now on newsstands and in our online store. This special issue includes 18 essays from authors around the globe, along with comments and quotes from many others on the topic. We are sharing eight of these essays online, including this one by Maud Vanpoulle, titled "Sharing Misadventures, not just Adventures: The Future of Climbing Accidentology." She writes: "Alpinists are often reluctant to talk about their own accidents. There can be a sense of guilt that haunts survivors or a reluctance to admit mistakes.... A change of attitude seems to be taking place at the heart of different mountain communities. Among other examples, social sciences researchers, in collaboration with the administrators of the French Web forum camptocamp.org, have established a debriefing system for 'incidents and accidents' that permits anonymous reporting and that encourages users to 'participate in the construction of a collective knowledge base.'"

Sounds of Ceremony: The Future of Sacred Landscapes

Posted September 23, 2021

"The Future of Alpinism," is the theme of Alpinist 75—which is now on newsstands and in our online store. This special issue includes 18 essays from authors around the globe, along with comments and quotes from many others on the topic. We are sharing eight of these essays online, including this one by Len Necefer, titled "Sounds of Ceremony: The Future of Sacred Landscapes." He writes: "Alpinism has provided me with a means to grow deeper roots into my own personal identity and the long-standing bonds with mountains of my Navajo heritage.... Within cultures around the world, the existence of mountain landscapes serves as an intergenerational reminder of the sacred. In our shared future of climate change, we must all ensure that we steward mountain landscapes for the generations ahead—to keep intact the many ways they nourish ecosystems and societies, but also to preserve the varied connections that we each maintain with them."

Mountain As Metaphor: A Future of Multiple Worldviews

Posted September 22, 2021

"The Future of Alpinism," is the theme of Alpinist 75—which is now on newsstands and in our online store. This special issue includes 18 essays from authors around the globe, along with comments and quotes from many others on the topic. We are sharing eight of these essays online, including this one by Dr. Pasang Yangjee Sherpa, titled "Mountain As Metaphor: A Future of Multiple Worldviews." She writes: "In the future, I hope alpinism is able to project multiple worldviews together at once—not as a competition to establish a hierarchy, but as a way to learn from each other and to treat everyone with dignity. I hope alpinism is not just about stepping on the mountain, but about strengthening our relationship with it and with each other...."

Free and High: A Future of Cutting-Edge Alpinism

Posted September 21, 2021

"The Future of Alpinism," is the theme of Alpinist 75—which is now on newsstands and in our online store. This special issue includes 18 essays from authors around the globe, along with comments and quotes from many others on the topic. We are sharing eight of these essays online, including this one by Tom Livingstone, titled "Free and High: A Future of Cutting-Edge Alpinism."

The Cresset and the Light: The Many Futures of Alpinism

Posted September 20, 2021

“The Future of Alpinism,” is the theme of Alpinist 75—which is now on newsstands and in our online store. This special issue includes 18 essays from authors around the globe, along with comments and quotes from many others on the topic. We are sharing eight of these essays online, starting with the introduction by Editor-in-Chief Katie Ives, titled “The Cresset and the Light: The Many Futures of Alpinism.” She observes that “the story of the future of alpinism will not be one story, but many stories…reflecting a wide range of values, perspectives and experiences. It became impossible for me to read these essays without thinking about this collection as a letter to the future. Messages of fears and hopes"—not just about climbing by itself, but also about the broader world in which it takes place.

Running Waters

Posted August 26, 2021

During the battles of World War I, British alpinist T. Graham Brown had vivid, recurring dreams of an alpine wall he'd first imagined after reading a route description in a climbing novel and trying to locate it on a map. Years later, Brown completed his famous routes on the real Brenva Face of Mont Blanc only to find, as he wrote in his memoir, that the vertical landscape of his fantasies still haunted him: "The dream and its country persist." In this Sharp End story from Alpinist 75—which is now on newsstands and in our online store—Editor-in-Chief Katie Ives explores the topographies of inner mountains.

The Climbing Life | Alpinist 75

Posted August 18, 2021

Alpinist 75 will be available on newsstands soon. In the meantime, we're offering a preview of The Climbing Life section, with a story by Douglas Brockmeyer about a 1970s magazine photo that inspired him to become a climber (and thus changed the course of his existence), poems by Katherine Indermaur about the fourth-century pilgrim Egeria and her ascent of Mt. Sinai, and fiction by Erin Connery that explores some of the many ways people think about high cliffs and walls.

Local Hero: Vasu Sojitra

Posted August 5, 2021

In this Local Hero story from Alpinist 74—which is now available on newsstands and in our online store—Dani Reyes-Acosta celebrates the community-building work and mountain adventures of ice climber and backcountry skier Vasu Sojitra, co-founder of the Inclusive Outdoors Project.

Nejc Zaplotnik, Mountain Poet

Posted July 18, 2021

As one of the first ascensionists of the West Ridge Direct of Chomolungma (Everest), Slovenian alpinist Nejc Zaplotnik (1952-1983) was among the great climbers of the twentieth century. To many, however, he is best known for his lyrical memoir, The Way ("Pot" in Slovenian), which gave voice to the dreams of his generation and beyond. In this feature story from Alpinist 74, mountaineering historian Bernadette McDonald recounts some of the key moments and mysteries of his vibrant life and shares translated passages of his book that still reverberate today.

1993: Picture on a Wall

Posted June 17, 2021

In this Mountain Profile essay from Alpinist 74—which is now available on newsstands and in our online store—Greg Child recounts the first ascent of the East Pillar Direct on Slesse (Selisi) with Perry Beckham in 1993. To read more history about this 2429-meter peak in British Columbia, check out Tami Knight's Mountain Profile in Issue 74.