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Evangelista Torricelli experimenting in the Alps with a barometer, 1643. [Illustration] Ernest Board, Wikimedia

Tool Users: Barometer

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.

Noah McKelvin and Luke Negley after pounding a birthday-cake flavored protein shake with Finger Fanger (5.10a, 500') looming behind them on the north face of Pikes Peak, Colorado. [Photo] McKelvin/Negley collection

Transcendental Linkup: Five routes up to 5.12a totaling 2,400′ on Pikes Peak in 21 hours

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.

Alpinist 67 (Autumn 2019) and Alpinist 68 (Winter 2019-20) include stories that are finalists in the category for Best Mountaineering Article at the 2020 Banff Mountain Film and Book Festival.

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).

The author showing off the Scarpa Ribelle HD boots in the Canadian Rockies. [Photo] Kate Erwin collection

Scarpa Ribelle HD: Boots that can keep up in the mountains

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.

Khamsang Wangdi Sherpa pictured (center of top photo) with two Ladakhi Instructors. [Bottom] Front row, left to right: Pasang Temba, Srikar Amladi, Khamsang Wangdi Sherpa. Back row: unknown. [Photo] Srikar Amladi collection; courtesy The Sherpa Project (both)

Local Hero: Khamsang Wangdi Sherpa

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.”

This image shows the five books that are on the shortlist for the 2020 Boardman-Tasker award. [Image]

Five books are on the Boardman-Tasker shortlist for 2020

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.

Ed Roberson on Mt. Washington (Agiocochook), New Hampshire, date unknown. [Photo] Courtesy Frank Daugherty

Beyond the Field Notes: Ed Roberson on Climbing and Poetry

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.

Fanny Bullock Workman with her Votes for Women sign. [Photo] William Hunter Workman, Wikimedia Commons

Of Monuments and Mountains

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 sporting the Acopa JBs on his and Zach Harrison's new route, Pump Drunk (5.12-, 115') in Northern Arizona's Pumphouse Wash (ancestral homelands of Pueblo, Sinagua, Hohokam, Hopi and Western Apache, among others). [Nelson Klein]

Acopa JB: A high-top climbing shoe that competes with the TC Pro

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 traversing out from one of the supercaves while climbing The Tiger on Washington Pass with the Beal Opera rope. [Photo] Will Stanhope

The Beal Opera: An 8.5mm rope that is as strong and waterproof as it is light

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.