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Damien Gildea

A mountaineering chronicler and an occasional critic of the overuse of communications technology, Damien Gildea describes this photo of himself in the Sentinel Range of Antarctica. [Photo] Stephen Chaplin

Taking Time To Tell: The Future of Trip Reports

“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 Damien Gildea, titled “Taking Time To Tell: The Future of Trip Reports.” He writes: “Alpinism is always about choices, and new technologies keep giving us more avenues to talk about our climbs. The choice of expedition media, how we use it, but also when we use it, can have lasting impacts…. If you choose to tell, by waiting for a while after the summit, you might create a more meaningful and accurate narrative…. The ego hits from ‘Likes’ are temporary, but an honest insight, gained after a period of reflection, might last indefinitely, or at least outlast you.”

Inspirations, Part V: The Wisdom of Exploration

Damien Gildea shares his inspirations. “Repeats were given a line or two at most. Details were scarce, photos grainy—but how much help do you want? That approach, including only the essential and knowing what to leave out, reflected one of the basic tenets of alpinism. And all without the narrow-minded, style-as-dogma hectoring we get now from wannabe alpine prophets.”