/ Recommend a book on alpine climbing please.
I've been fantasising about possible future alpine adventures. I'm considering doing a course next year but all thoughts need to wait until I've saved up. In the mean time could anyone recommend a book with instruction on Alpine CLimbing. The sort of thing that will help maintain excitement whilst I'm saving and which will give me a head start on a training course (or should I be able to simply go with a more experienced mountaineer).
Thank you in advance, oh and I have a copy of the "winter skills book"
Be prepared to dig deep for the gear. After buying it all you won't have much money left for a course. :-)
After reading the instructional books get on 'Starlight and Storm' by Gaston Rebuffat and 'Beyond the mountain' by steve house for some propper alpine psyche.
Light and fast is definitely an inspirational read, and apparently steve house is writing a book about training for alpine climbing which could be just what's needed- but not an 'instructional' book per se.
For everyone else, thank you for your responses.
James, In Monte Viso's Horizon by Will McLewin is not an instructional book, but you will learn all sorts of invaluable practical tips you won't learn elsewhere. It will certainly 'maintain the excitement…' and you will have a really great laugh into the bargain. BT winner around 1992. Can lend if you are around sometime.
Alpine climbing by John Barry. I'll send you it tomorrow for £5 inclusive of postage and packaging.
Yhm. Send me your address
Rather than a book on technique I would suggest reading any auto-biographies you can find of the great alpine climbers of the last century. Rebuffat has already been suggested, but those of Terray, Desmaison and Bonatti are incredibly inspiring. The bits about their youth and how they started off, their mistakes and learning process are particularly good too - they didn't go on a course they learnt by experience... but admittedly with the advantage of living in the Alps! On the other hand it was their overwhelming enthusiasm and desire to climb which organised their entire lives... Joe Brown's "The Hard Years" will give you a more British view of a similar experience.
Meantime, all winter, don't miss a chance to get out to the hills, even if it's only hill walking in the rain. Scrambling on wet rocks in the cold when completely knackered is the best way I can think of to prepare yourself both physically and mentally for the Alps :-)
The best book for the actual nitty gritty technical stuff is 'Handbook of technical mountaineering' - I like its alphabetical format for dipping into: http://www.amazon.com/International-Handbook-Technical-Mountaineering-Pete/dp/0715321668
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