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THE FLAME OF ADVENTURE Simon Yates 2001 1st ed Hardcover DJ Fine
By Yates, Simon
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London, Jonathan Cape, 2001, 1st UK edition. 220 pp, color photos. Black hardcover with dust jacket. Fine.

Forever to be known as the man who cut Joe Simpson's rope in Touching The Void, Yates, like Simpson, has spent his life searching for adventure on the greatest peaks of the world. Includes climbs of the Eiger, Khan Tengri, Karakoram, Tian Shan, Nanga Parbat, more. 

Simon Yates is probably best known, much to his chagrin, as 'the guy who cut the rope' on Joe Simpson during their descent of a new route on the West Face of the Siula Grande in the Peruvian Andes. In Flame of Adventure, Yates touches on this famous story and shares his perspective on climbing styles; he also shares tales of personal embarrassment, childhood experiences, and the different cultures he has encountered in his travels.

He looks at himself through the eyes of 'civilization,' talking about using his climbing skills while working on a construction site and the terror his apparent risks triggers in other workers. He, in turn, is amazed by their perspective.

This is the story of a man who lives on an adventurous, dangerous edge, frightening to many. Yet, Yates observes, countless people who once opted for safe 9-to-5 existences are now turning to extreme sports in order to put some excitement into their lives. From the Karakorum to the Eiger, Yates' accounts of his adventures both thrill and entertain. On a climb of Lobsang II he and a friend realized they had stopped short of the true summit. Rather than continue, they decided to sit in the sun and enjoy the view, and then to simply descend. Through such anecdotes Yates reflects on what matters to him and what adventure is, as well as why he and so many others find it crucial to a life well lived.

Simon Yates is a British climber and has climbed with Greg Child, Doug Scott, Andy Cave, and other prominent climbers. He has worked as a mountain guide and now lectures and runs commercial expeditions. His first book, Against the Wall, was shortlisted for the Boardman-Tasker Award.

In a career spanning over twenty years Simon Yates' climbing and traveling has taken him from Alaska in the west to Australia in the east, from the Canadian Arctic in the north to the tip of South America. During this time he has been fortunate enough to climb with some of Britain's leading contemporary mountaineers including among many Andy Cave, Mick Fowler, Andy Parkin, Paul Pritchard, Doug Scott, Sean Smith and Steve Sustad.

He first came to prominence as a mountaineer in 1985 after the first ascent of the West Face of Siula Grande in the Peruvian Andes and the ensuing epic descent described in Simpson's book 'Touching the Void' and the 2003 BAFTA wining docudrama of the same name.

Simon has made eleven visits to the Pakistani Karakoram, climbing numerous peaks. These have included first ascents of Leyla Peak (6300m) and Nemeka (6400m) in Hushe, a second ascent of Lobsang 2 on the Baltoro and various 6000m peaks on the Hispar glacier. In other parts of the world, Simon has succeeded with a team making the first British ascents of Khan Tengri (6995m) in Kazakhstan and for a time concentrated on big wall climbing in Patagonia and Baffin Island - the most notable achievement, a new route on the Central Tower of Paine in Chile. Simon has made three sailing and mountaineering trips to Chilean Tierra del Fuego resulting in the first ascent of Monte Ada (2100m), the third ascent of Monte Frances (2200m) and sailing round Cape Horn. Most recently (September 2004) Simon returned to Pakistan and made the first ascent of the S.W.Face of Hispar Sar (6400m), and in May 2005 climbed a new route on the West Face of Mount Alverstone (4439m) in the remote Wrangell -St Elias range of mountains on the Alaskan - Yukon border.


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