The Making of an Alpinist

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Want to know how a kid from Pullman, Washington, became who Reinhold Messner has called today’s best high-altitude climber? Then read Beyond the Mountain ($29.95, patagonia.com), wherein Steve House recounts his rugged path to the pinnacle of modern alpinism. Chock-full of spellbinding adventures, this autobiographical gem reveals as much about the author’s personality and motivations as his FAs. A nonstop 62-hour blitzkrieg on Denali’s South Face, epic winter ascents in the Canadian Rockies, solo FAs of 20,000-foot Karakoram peaks, a six-day, alpine-style ascent of the 14,000-foot Rupal Face of Nanga Parbat — House is the real deal, his book destined for the climbing-literature pantheon.

—Fred Bryant

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