What’s a glass instrument measuring four feet long and filled with mercury doing in your rucksack? In this Tool Users story from Alpinist 71, Caroline Schaumann and Bruce Willey reveal the history of the glass barometer.
On August 22, Noah McKelvin (28) and Luke Negley (20) climbed five major formations on Colorado’s Pikes Peak in a single push. On the way they racked up five routes with difficulties up to 5.12a totaling 2,400 feet of technical terrain, most of which is around 12,000 to 13,000 feet in elevation. Their car-to-car time was 21 hours, with 16 hours spent climbing. They called it the Transcendental Linkup.
Two Alpinist stories are candidates for Best Mountaineering Article in the Banff Mountain Book Competition
The Banff Mountain Book Competition released the long list of contenders for various categories on September 15–two stories from Alpinist magazine are being considered for Best Mountaineering Article: “Denali, A Universe,” by Jan Harper-Haines, first published in Alpinist 67 (Autumn 2019), and “Melting Giants,” by Benjamin Ribeyre and Erin Smart, Alpinist 68 (Winter 2019-20).
Kate Erwin has been using the Scarpa Ribelle HD boots in the Canadian Rockies. The crossover style is similar to Scarpa’s Ribelle OD but with a leather upper and no ankle gaiter. Erwin’s Ribelle HD boots performed well in the Bugaboos while carrying a heavy pack. She reports that the balance point of the boots took some getting used to compared to other mountain boots she’s used, but ultimately she concluded, “I really like it.” Four stars.
In this Local Hero story that first appeared in Alpinist 71, Deepa Balsavar and Nandini Purandare recount the life of Khamsang Wangdi Sherpa, who was born in Nepal in 1932 and was ahead of his time when he started the Sherpa Guide School in 1966 near Manali in Himachal Pradesh. Balsavar and Purandare write, “A gentle and far-thinking man, Khamsang Wangdi Sherpa remains an unsung hero of mountaineering: a superb climber, teacher, leader and entrepreneur, and a compassionate soul. His story deserves to be told.”
Five books are on the shortlist for the Boardman-Tasker Award this year, and Alpinist Editor-in-Chief Katie Ives is concluding her two-year term limit as a judge. There were 22 entries this year from Great Britain, Ireland, Canada, New Zealand and the USA. The award will be presented at the Digital Kendal Mountain Festival on November 21.
In this feature from Alpinist 71, Sarah Audsley interviews poet Ed Roberson. Born in 1939 in Pittsburgh, Roberson nurtured a burgeoning curiosity for the world from a young age. On his first major mountaineering expedition, he made the second ascent of Nevado Jangyaraju III (5450m) in Peru. Herein, Roberson discusses how his notes from the field came to shape some of his prize-winning work.
In this Sharp End story from Alpinist 71–which is now on some newsstands and in our online store–Deputy Editor Paula Wright observes, “Today the phrase ‘keep politics out of climbing’ frequently pops up in online comments–as though by disregarding the larger context of our expeditions or by censoring certain facts, we might emerge onto a fantasy plane where the messy realities of our societies and the airy brilliance of an alpine summit never intersect. Yet we are living in a time of overlapping crises and movements that no one can ignore.”
Chris Kalman continues his quest to find the best all-day, all-around climbing shoe. Everyone knows that a certain brand’s TC Pro has set the standard in this category. Can the Acopa JB–named after the climbing legend and late Acopa executive John Bachar–compete? “It’s a toss-up,” Kalman reports. Four stars.
Whitney Clark was skeptical about the Beal Opera’s skinny 8.5mm diameter when she first laid her hands on it–how well could such a thin cord really hold up against the sharp rock of alpine routes? The Opera is certified to be used as a single, twin or half rope, which adds great versatility for alpinists, and sure enough, the rope held up. After using the Opera at Index, Washington, the Cascades, Sawtooths and Wind River Range, Clark writes, “the Opera is a great choice for alpine routes when saving weight is key.” Five stars.