A popular adventurer and wildlife presenter with all ages, Steve Backshall has been climbing since his teens and has a genuine love for the mountains.
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This book is peppered with anecdotes of his climbs and is a celebration of the power of natural landscapes and how they can make us feel very small but also very alive. Despite breaking his back while climbing in 2008, Steve was not put off and managed to seek a variety of new challenges.
He looks back at some of his greatest achievements while climbing including the first ascent of Mount Kuli in the Bornean rainforest, his trek up K2 in Karakorum and describes the terror of a travelling companion's fall into a crevasse while trailing a snow leopard.
Exciting, inspiring and sure to make you feel on top of the world, this is a stunning autobiography about Steve's incredible achievements.
This is the true story of a 24-hour period on Everest, when members of three separate expeditions were caught in a storm and faced a battle against hurricane-force winds, exposure, and the effects of altitude, which ended the worst single-season death toll in the peak's history. In March 1996, Outside magazine sent veteran journalist and seasoned climber Jon Krakauer on an expedition led by celebrated Everest guide Rob Hall. Despite the expertise of Hall and the other leaders, by the end of summit day eight people were dead. Krakauer's book is at once the story of the ill-fated adventure and an analysis of the factors leading up to its tragic end. Written within months of the events it chronicles, Into Thin Air clearly evokes the majestic Everest landscape. As the journey up the mountain progresses, Krakauer puts it in context by recalling the triumphs and perils of other Everest trips throughout history. The author's own anguish over what happened on the mountain is palpable as he leads readers to ponder timeless questions.
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This title is Winner of the Boardman Tasker Prize 2008. "Metro" magazine recently wrote that Andy Kirkpatrick makes Ray Mears look like Paris Hilton. Words like boldness, adventure and risk were surely coined especially for him. As one of the world's most accomplished mountaineers and big-wall climbers, he goes vertically where other climbers (to say nothing of the general public) fear to tread. For the first time, this cult hero of vertical rock has written a book, in which his thirteen-day ascent of Reticent Wall on El Capitan in California - the hardest big-wall climb ever soloed by a Briton - frames a challenging autobiography. From childhood on a grim inner-city housing estate in Hull, the story moves through horrific encounters and unique athletic achievements at the extremes of the earth. As he writes, 'Climbs like this make no sense ...the chances of dying on the route are high'. Yet Andy, in his thirties with young children, has everything to live for. This is the paradox at the heart of the story. This book - by turns gut-wrenching, entertaining and challenging - appeals to the adventurer in all of us.
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This is the complete practical handbook on rock climbing, from first steps to advanced rescue techniques, shown in over 600 clear and informative photographs. It offers step-by-step guidance in all aspects of the sport, including belaying, leading and abseiling, and in every kind of location from climbing walls and sport climb venues to remote mountain crags and sea cliffs. It discusses the required clothing and equipment, what you need, where and when. It also offers top training tips to get the most out of your climbing sessions and to develop stamina and strength. It includes key information on navigation, first aid and weather interpretation, and other essential skills for the adventurous climber. It also includes a guide to the best climbing locations around the world, from Africa, Asia and Australia to Britain, Europe and the United States. Here is a comprehensive illustrated guide to every aspect of rock climbing, from basic indoor wall climbing techniques to the ultimate adventure of scaling sea cliffs and high mountain crags. For beginners, helpful advice is provided on essential clothing and equipment. Handholds and footholds are described and ropework skills for every eventuality are included. For those with more experience, information is provided on climbing in remote places and the special skills needed to do this safely and responsibly, including navigation, interpreting the weather and first aid. Finally a global tour of the best climbing locations are described.
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AADAY 11 years +11 years +
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Winner of 1988's Boardman Tasker Prize for Mountain Literature and the 1989 NCR Book Award, Touching the Void is the heart-stopping account of Joe Simpson's terrifying adventure in the Peruvian Andes. He and his climbing partner, Simon Yates, reached the the summit of the remote Siula Grande in June 1985 shortly before disaster struck. A few days later, Simon staggered back to their non-climbing companion with tragic news. What happened to Joe, and how the pair dealt with the psychological traumas that resulted when Simon was forced into to cut the rope, makes not only an epic of survival but a compelling testament of friendship. In 2003, the book was adapted into a documentary film that won the Best British Film award at the BAFTAs.
"A classic of its kind...His vivid, high powered but never overdramatised account of the ascent still reads splendidly". ("The Irish Times"). In 1950, no mountain higher than 8,000 meters had ever been climbed. Maurice Herzog and other members of the French Alpine Club resolved to try. This is the enthralling story of the first conquest of Annapurna and the harrowing descent. With breathtaking courage and grit manifest on every page, "Annapurna" is one of the greatest adventure stories ever told. As well as an introduction by Joe Simpson, this new edition includes 16 pages of photographs, which provide a remarkable visual record of this legendary expedition.
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This is an epic guide to the most intrepid mountaineers in history. Written in association with the Royal Geographical Society and The Alpine Club, Mountaineers tells the story of the pioneers who first conquered the giddy heights of our planet. Full of epic tales of endurance and perseverance, more than 100 of the top mountaineers are profiled, from Hannibal to Hillary. You can share in their triumphs and tragedies from the comfort of your living room as journal extracts and never-before-seen photographs and maps from the unpublished archives of the RGS and The Alpine Club help recreate history's greatest ascents. Mountaineers introduces you to a host of intriguing characters, from the Brits who insisted on hauling cases of vintage champagne up to Everest base camp in 1924, to the Italian Duke of the Abruzzi who took 10 iron bedsteads up Alaska's Malaspina glacier. Along the way you'll also find out about the important scientific discoveries that have shaped the course of human history and enjoy accounts of great bravery, fellowship and good humour in the face of adversity, all making Mountaineers a fascinating read for anyone with a spirit of adventure.
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A classic of mountaineering literature, The White Spider tells the story of the harrowing first ascent of the Eiger's North Wall, one of the most legendary and terrifying climbs in recorded history. Heinrich Herrer, author of Seven Years in Tibet, was a member of the four-man party that scaled the previously untouchable North Wall of the Eiger in 1938. In The White Spider, Herrer tells the story of this harrowing first ascent, a gripping first-hand account of daring and resilience in the high Swiss Alps. Moving from his own amazing experiences to the numerous later attempts to replicate his team's achievements (some tragic failures, others spectacular successes), Herrer writes as well as he climbs, drawing the reader into a beguiling story of courage, strength and a confidence always on the edge of hubris. A new introduction by Joe Simpson, author of the acclaimed mountaineering epic Touching the Void, reminds us of the enduring relevance of this absolute classic.
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I Chose to Climb, first published in 1966, was Chris Bonington's first book. He was recognised then, as now, as one of the outstanding members of a brilliant generation of mountaineers, which included such personalities as Hamish MacInnes, Don Whillans and Ian Clough. Here he describes his climbing beginnings as a teenager as well as successful ascents all over the world: the first ascent of the Central Pillar of Freney, the first British ascent of the North Face of the Eiger in 1962, Annapurna II in 1960 and in an unhappy expedition in 1961, Nuptse, the third peak of Everest. The first volume of Chris Bonington's autobiography is written with a warmth and enthusiasm that he has made his own. It tells of his climbing tastes and practice, and of family, friends and partnerships cemented over many years.
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In this comprehensive guide, experienced climber and coach John White shows how to climb indoors and introduces the reader to a range of exercises and techniques that will not only improve their indoor climbing but also help them to climb more safely and effectively outside. Climbing on artificial walls has been growing in popularity since the idea was first developed nearly 40 years ago and there are now indoor climbing walls and specialised indoor centres in most major UK cities as well as the means for keen climbers to construct their own walls in their gardens or garages at home. Climbing using artificial walls is a safe and controlled way for beginners to learn the techniques they need to know for climbing outdoors. It is also a means for experienced outdoor climbers to train effectively when they are not near to suitable outdoor sites or conditions are dangerous.
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Hamish Brown has completed several rounds of both the Munros and Corbetts. Climbing the Corbetts describes all of these mountains in their Scottish Mountaineering Club areas, giving many relevant details for climbers and including Hamish's stories of his adventures and other hill lore.
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No goggles or glacier glasses, no hi-tech axes or day-glo Gore-Tex adorned Alpinists of the mid-nineteenth century. From the 1850s to the early twentieth century, the achievements of Irish mountaineers are largely obscured in British historical accounts. This sets the record straight. Frank Nugent, mountaineer-explorer, reveals a significant Irish contribution beginning with the Golden Age of Alpine Mountaineering when the first ascents of mountains like the Eiger and Weisshorn and the first traverse of the Matterhorn from Italy were by Irish climbers. Significant climbers of the time were: John Tyndall, a scientist from Carlow; John Ball MP from Dublin was the first president of the Alpine Club and led the popularisation of the sport with a series of guidebooks; Anthony Adams-Reilly from Westmeath produced the first reliable map of the Mont Blanc massif; Elizabeth Whitshed from Greystones, a pioneering woman mountaineer, was one of the first to engage in winter Alpine climbing; Valentine Ryan from Offaly is often considered the finest Alpine climber of the early twentieth century. The Alpine's Club's first publication in 1859 was Peaks, Passes and Glaciers, edited by John Ball. A climbing record of the Alpine Club, it was the blueprint for the Alpine Journal published annually ever since. The varied social, political and scientific backgrounds of Irish Alpine pioneers provide absorbing insights into nineteenth-century Irish society.
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On the night of 10-11 May 1996, eight climbers perished in what remains the worst disaster in Everest's history. Following the tragedy, numerous accounts were published, with Jon Krakauer's "Into Thin Air" becoming an international bestseller. But has the whole story been told? "A Day to Die For" reveals the full, startling facts that led to the tragedy. Graham Ratcliffe, the first British climber to reach the summit of Mount Everest twice, was a first-hand witness, having spent the night on Everest's South Col at 26,000 ft, sheltering from the deadly storm. For years, he has shouldered a burden of guilt, feeling that he and his teammates could have saved lives that fateful night. His quest for answers has led to discoveries so important to an understanding of the disaster that he now questions why these facts were not made public sooner. History is dotted with high-profile disasters that both horrify and capture the attention of the public, but very rarely is our view of them revised to such devastating effect.
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29 May 2013 is the sixtieth anniversary of the first ascent of Mount Everest. The allure of Everest remains undimmed, and the publication of this unique book celebrates this most majestic of mountains, with exclusive access to the photographic imagery and private archives of celebrated climber and photographer George Lowe, the last surviving member of that triumphant expedition. Not only the anniversary of the first ascent, 2013 sees other significant Everest anniversaries: 50 years since the first American ascent; 35 years since the first ascent without supplementary oxygen; and 25 years since the first ascent by a route up the South Buttress on the eastern Kangshung Face. An outstanding team of mountaineers and distinguished contributors associated with Everest provide their reflections and tributes, helping to create a remarkable visual and personal testimony to this historic event and to a mountain like no other.
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Mount Kailas is the most sacred of the world's mountains - holy to one fifth of humanity. Isolated beyond the central Himalayas, its summit has never been scaled, but for centuries the mountain has been ritually circled by Hindu and Buddhist pilgrims. Colin Thubron joins these pilgrims, after an arduous trek from Nepal, through the high passes of Tibet, to the magical lakes beneath the slopes of Kailas itself. He talks to secluded villagers and to monks in their decaying monasteries; he tells the stories of exiles and of eccentric explorers from the West. Yet, he is also walking on a pilgrimage of his own. Having recently witnessed the death of the last of his family, his trek around the great mountain awakes an inner landscape of love and grief, restoring precious fragments of his own past.
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This selection of the very best writing on Everest begins with the first attempts and continues, via Mallory's failed bid and Hillary and Tenzing's triumph, to the disasters of recent years. It features 35 white-knuckle accounts of climbing on the world's highest mountain, with all the tragedy and triumph of humankind's striving for the top of the world, by those who know the 'Death Zone' best - the climbers themselves. But this is much more than just the best of exhilarating first-hand accounts of climbing on Everest. It includes the full history of the conquest of Everest, and provides an evocative portrait of the cruel, natural beauty of Chomolungma, 'The Mother Goddess of the World'.
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Essential guidebook of walks and climbs in the Pyrenees, with over 170 day walks, multi-day walks, climbing routes and mountaineering ascents. Covers all valleys and peaks on both sides of the border with France and Spain, with through routes and peaks to bag, as an introduction to one of Europe's finest mountain ranges. The active walker, trekker and climber is spoilt for choice. There are exquisite valleys and passes to wander and summits of 3000m and more within the reach of most hill walkers. The landscape is full of diversity and contrast, with Alpine-style peaks, small glaciers, deep gorges and more than a thousand mountain lakes. The range is also known as the 'flower garden of Europe', and the wildlife includes various species rarely seen elsewhere on the continent. Since the first edition appeared in 1978, Walks and Climbs in the Pyrenees has become accepted as the authoritative guide to the range and has been continuously updated and in print. For centuries the Pyrenees were dismissed as holding little of importance to the climber and mountain walkers ignored them almost completely. But all that has changed and the Pyrenees have now become the focus of attention for mountain activists of all degrees of commitment. The guidebook divides the range into 21 sections, including Andorra, the Ordesa National Park, the Carlit Massif, Gavarnie and the Cirque du Lescun to name a few. Each area includes practical information on travel, accommodation and mountain refuges, as well sketch mapping. Between short, half-hour walks, to 12-day treks and 25 summits, this guidebook will help any walker, climber or trekker experience the best of the Pyrenees.
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APWND 7 years +7 years +
Kick excitement into high gear with this extreme title! Short, easy-to-read text pairs with full-colour, action-packed photos to introduce young adventurers to the extreme sport of mountaineering. Readers will learn about the tools and equipment used in climbing mountains, as well as dangers and safety tips. They are introduced to the world's most famous mountain peaks, including Mount Everest, K-2, Mount McKinley, Aconcagua, Kilimanjaro, Mount Elbrus, Mount Vinson, Puncak Jaya, Mount Kosciuszko, and the Matterhorn. Extreme facts supplement the text, leaving aspiring mountaineers excited for a rocky adventure!
Everest - the highest mountain in the world and the ultimate climbing challenge. In 2006, 11 people died attempting to reach the summit, the most fatalities since 1996. But unlike 1996, 2006 saw no surprise blizzard, only the constant dangers posed by unstable ice, merciless cold, thin air - and human nature. Nick Heil tells the shocking true stories of David Sharp, a young British solo climber, who was passed by 40 mountaineers as he lay dying on the slopes of the mountain, and Lincoln Hall who was left for dead yet miraculously survived, and asks: What does climbing the world's highest peak really mean for those who take on the challenge? And how far will they go in their single-minded pursuit of the ultimate mountaineering prize?
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It's the summit of K2, 1 August 2008. An exhausted band of climbers pump their fists into the clear blue sky - joining the elite who have conquered the world's most lethal mountain. But as they celebrate, far below them an ice shelf collapses and sweeps away their ropes. They don't know it yet, but they will be forced to descend into the blackness with no lines. Of the thirty who set out, eleven will never make it back. No Way Down weaves a tale of human courage, folly, survival and devastating loss. The stories are heart-wrenching: the young married couple whose rope was torn apart by an avalanche, sending the husband to his death; the 61-year-old Frenchman who called his family from near the summit to say he wouldn't make it home. So what drove them to try to conquer this elusive peak? And what went wrong that fateful day?
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The slate quarries near Llanberis have become one of the most popular climbing spots in North Wales for climbers looking for sport routes, or immaculate slab climbing. The development started with the slate boom of the 1980s when the area became famous for immaculate slabs of purple slate with bold run-out routes. Most of these routes are still there in their original style and many have become classics and much sought-after trad ticks. More recently the area has been developed with a multitude of super sport routes from short single pitches to huge multi-pitch extravaganzas. This guide is a celebration of all of those styles of slate climbing. It is a comprehensive guidebook covering all the routes which is a little unusual for a Rockfax, although we have produced such books before.
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The Alps rank high among the world's foremost destinations for canyoning. This book brings together all the most celebrated descents in the Alpine regions of northern Italy and Ticino in Switzerland, including classic limestone canyons and superb granite-gneiss water sculptures. Divided into five areas, the descents described in the guide present a huge variety of terrain, rock and styles of canyoning. Route difficulty is split into seven grades, from easier canyons suited to beginners, through to the strongest aquatic and technical challenges, which demand experienced rope skills, physical fitness and a calm head for high water. The guide provides comprehensive background information on equipment, hazards and techniques, as well as details of Alpine geology and the history of canyon exploration. The book also features additional nearby routes in Austria, Slovenia and in the Valais Alps, as well as the climbing, via ferrata and walking options in the surrounding hills and mountains.
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The Swiss Alps are home to the highest and most spectacular mountains in Western Europe, beloved not only of mountaineers, from the earliest days of alpinism to the present day, but also those content simply to gaze and wonder. This unique resource for the climber, walker, trekker and ski mountaineer, the latest volume in Cicerone's World Mountain Ranges series, describes each mountain area throughout Switzerland - the peaks, passes, valleys and bases - to help readers identify the best destinations for their chosen mountain activity. Lavishly illustrated throughout, and with scores of expertly drawn maps, this is the essential guide for all active visitors to one of Europe's most mountainous, and beautiful, countries. Includes descriptions of all the Swiss Alps, area-by-area from the Chablais Alps in the south west to the Silvretta in the north east, with classic walks and climbs identified, alongside outlines of all the major hut-to-hut trekking routes. Full information on maps, guides and accommodation is provided, pinpointing all the mountain huts in the area.
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This book is a resource covering the finest walks, treks and climbs to be found in Scotland, written by an award-winning author. From the rolling hills of the Southern Uplands to the great granite plateaus of the Cairngorms to the jagged peaks of Torridon and the Cuillin hills on the Isle of Skye, Scotland has a rich variety of wild landscapes and terrain that is perfect for many activities. Scotland's lochs, forests and rivers offer spectacular scenery and a tranquility that visitors embrace time and time again. Author Chris Townsend was the first person to complete a continuous round of all the Scottish Munros and Tops. He has also walked across the Scottish mountains from coast to coast 14 times, and has served as the President of the Mountaineering Council of Scotland. With superb photography and an exceptional level of detail throughout, this book is an ideal all-embracing guide for the mountain adventurer.
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