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  • A Drone in the Desert

    In this Sharp End story from Alpinist 85—which is now available on newsstands and in our online store—Derek Franz encounters a drone on top of a desert tower and contemplates the changes brought on by the technological age, and what the future might hold for climbing in America.

  • Onward & Upward: A century of women climbing in the Tetons

    In late 2022, I learned that The Teton Climbers’ Coalition would be celebrating the 100th anniversary of the first female ascent of the Grand Teton the next year, and they were looking for suggestions on how to engage the community. This sparked the nugget of an idea in my storyteller’s brain—I could help mark this…

  • 1981: Katahdin in Winter

    As we moved higher, the fog thickened. Nancy Rich, Helen and I began putting in wands on the off chance we’d be descending this route. As the trail gained the summit plateau, called the Tableland, flat and featureless, the grade eased off and the route was marked by cairns.

  • Two proposals threaten America’s rock climbing

    Policy proposals are now being considered by the National Park Service (NPS) and US Forest Service (USFS) that threaten to fundamentally change the way rock climbing is managed. A comment period for these proposals has recently been extended to January 30. It is important that climbers make our presence known and kindly share our perspectives…

  • 1973: The Cilley-Barber Route

    Whiteout spindrift avalanches, the cold temperature and bulletproof ice all made the climbing slow and progress doubtful as I skirted around the right side of some horizontal ice roofs. I prayed Dave wouldn’t fall following this pitch: my gear was in questionable, shattered ice, and I was belaying above the crux from my seventy-centimeter wooden-shafted…

  • Sharp End: Shiny Things

    In this Sharp End story from Alpinist 84—which is now available on newsstands and in our online store—Derek Franz weighs the pros and cons of the Piolets d’Or. “The propriety of Piolets’ “Golden Ice Axe” awards in the realm of alpinism has been debated ever since the first ceremony in 1992,” he writes. “If the…

  • Tool User: Sticky-Rubber Kneepads

    In this Tool User story from Alpinist 83—which is available in our online store—Matt Samet traces the development of sticky-rubber kneepads.

  • Climbing in Wilderness

    In this Sharp End story from Alpinist 83–which is now available on newsstands and in our online store–Derek Franz examines the legal landscape and uncertain future for bolts and other fixed anchors that have been used for climbing in designated wilderness areas for nearly sixty years. Legislation such as Protect America’s Rock Climbing Act and…

  • Power on the Peaks

    In this Climbing Life story from Alpinist 81–which is available in our online store–Shehla Anjum shares stories from some of the Pakistani women finding their power amid the country’s high peaks.

  • Contemplating the Next Impossible

    In this Sharp End story from Alpinist 82–which is now on newsstands and in our online store–Derek Franz considers some of the hardest objectives for today’s alpinists. He writes: “When it comes to the physical limits of the human body, we are constantly wondering what is possible: What is the fastest a human can run,…

  • What’s Past is Prologue: Tom Hornbein’s Winding Road to Chomolungma

    To honor the life of Tom Hornbein, who died on May 6, 2023, at his home in Estes Park, Colorado, at age 92, we are sharing this feature story from Alpinist 73 (2021) by mountaineering historian Maurice Isserman. Hornbein was one of America’s greatest climbers, best known for completing the first ascent of Mt. Everest’s…

  • New route on Mt. Dickey, Alaska: Aim For the Bushes

    Over a three-day push from March 31 to April 2, Matt Cornell, Jackson Marvell and Alan Rousseau climbed a new route on the east face of Mt. Dickey in Alaska’s Ruth Gorge. They named their line Aim For the Bushes (AI6 M6 X, 5,250′). Rousseau narrates their adventure.

  • Alpinist Community Project Flashback: Meg O’Neill

    From October 24-30, 2016, Meg O’Neill shared some stories and photos with the #AlpinistCommunityProject about her path to alpinism. O’Neill died tragically on April 2, 2023, while ice climbing with two friends on Raven Falls in northeastern Utah when an ice pillar collapsed. On April 4 the Duchesne County Sheriff’s Office confirmed that a 34-year-old…

  • Between safety and boldness

    In this Sharp End story from Alpinist 81–which is now on newsstands and in our online store–Derek Franz seeks a balance between safety and boldness. He writes: “Climbing…is full of duality, encompassing a range of contradictory values…. There is a continual tightrope walk between the opposing values of safety and boldness, and the search for…

  • What We Search For

    As he struggles to cope with the death of a friend, Jason Nark becomes absorbed in the story of the search for Matthew Greene, a climber who disappeared in the Sierra Nevada in 2013.

  • Remembering Ed Webster: 1956-2022

    One of climbing’s great Renaissance men, Ed Webster, 66, died of natural causes at his Maine home on November 22. Friend and climbing historian Jeff Achey described Webster as “one of the most important rock climbers of his era, on par, in his unique way, with John Bachar, Henry Barber and Jimmy Dunn.” Webster blazed…

  • Alpinist hires Abbey Collins as assistant editor

    Alpinist is delighted to welcome Abbey Collins to its team as an assistant editor. She returns to the East Coast from Alaska to work from the magazine’s headquarters in Jeffersonville, Vermont. “Abbey brings a broad skillset to us, from radio to print journalism, and I’m excited about the possibilities she brings to Alpinist, and what…

  • A Climbing Life

    In this Sharp End story from Alpinist 80–which is now available on newsstands and in our online store–Derek Franz shares his journey from Alpinist reader to editor-in-chief.

  • Bea and Me

    In this story from Alpinist 79 (Autumn 2022), a 1952 photo of a woman who forged pitons inspires Lauren Delaunay Miller to embark on a journey to learn more about Bea Vogel, an early Yosemite climber and ardent activist, for whom the right to choose was paramount–on the rock and in the rest of life.…

  • Derek Franz begins new role as editor-in-chief of Alpinist

    Alpinist has named Derek Franz as the new editor-in-chief. Franz began freelancing for the magazine in 2011 and joined the Alpinist staff as digital editor in September 2016. “I’m truly humbled and honored to start this new chapter for the magazine,” Franz says. “As the new editor-in-chief I will do my best to uphold the…

  • The World Between the Pages

    In this Sharp End story from Alpinist 79–which is now on newsstands and in our online store–Alpinist’s departing editor-in-chief Katie Ives ponders the fates of climbing publications and says farewell after ten years at the helm of the magazine. She writes: “I am leaving for other paths. The magazine will go on, with your help.…

  • Mountains of Grief

    “When the mountain community…grapples with the accidental death of one of its members,” Anna Callaghan writes, “only one thing is certain: it’s going to happen again.” Through interviews with several climbers who’ve lost loved ones to the mountains, Callaghan explores the ways in which people across the climbing community are banding together to address grief…

  • Madaleine Sorkin becomes the first woman to free climb Dunn-Westbay Direct (5.14-)

    On August 10, Madaleine Sorkin, 40, enjoyed a no-falls day on the Dunn-Westbay Direct (IV 5.14-, 4 pitches, 1,000′) on the Diamond of Longs Peak (Neniisotoyou’u, 14,255′) in Rocky Mountain National Park. This makes her the first woman and fifth person overall to free climb the route on lead. The crux pitch is about 270…

  • A new variation to Camp 2 and a speed ascent on Nanga Parbat

    In late June and early July, a group of climbing guides from Italy’s Aosta Valley completed a variation to Camp 2 and a speed ascent on Nanga Parbat (8125m). On June 26, Francois “Franz” Cazzanelli and Pietro Picco climbed a 1400-meter variation up to Camp 2 on the Kinshofer Route (ca. 6000m) in alpine style…