Synopses & Reviews
Denali (Mt. McKinley) is accessible to climbers with limited alpine experienceprovided they are in top condition and able to contend with the worst weather on Earth. In Desire & Ice,
novice climber David Brill tells how he rose to a challenge that subjected him to physical and psychological extremes. Brill was way out of his comfort zone on Denali, and in this lighthearted take on his achievement, he tells us all about it.
Denali presents the greatest vertical gainfrom just above sea level to 20,320 feetof any mountain on the planet. Sited 2,400 miles north of Everest, it is notorious for 100-mile-per-hour winds and temperatures of 60 to 100 degrees below zero. Denalis thin air and 21 hours of sun per summer day create a near-Himalayan climbing environment.
Then theres the specter of death on the mountain. Since a group of miners (the Sourdough Expedition) defied all odds and reach the North Peak in 1910, Denali has claimed the lives of nearly 100 climbers.
These extreme conditions and storied history are woven throughout Brills account of his own attempt to scale Denali. Trained by expert guides, the 45-year-old fledgling mountaineer mastered the skills to propel him from sofa to summit. His account overflows with vivid personalities and events: As Brill and his rope-mates cross glaciers and crevasses, claw their way up walls of ice, and wait out a killer storm, the author probes the motivation of his guides and fellow climbersincluding two women whose quest for the summit ends in a flesh-freezing bathroom break.
The award-winning journalist and author of As Far As the Eye Can See describes his journey as a novice, middle-aged climber to the top of North America's highest peak, Denali, detailing the physical and psychological challenges of his trip, the harsh conditions he faced, and the history of expeditio
Includes bibliographical references (p. -246) and index.
What happens when an ordinary person undertakes an extraordinary experience? He winds up atop North America's highest peak--Denali (Mt. McKinley), where his unlikely triumph sparks some surprising insights into his struggles at sea level. 21 full-color photos. "National Geographic Traveler" magazine two-part feature.