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HERMANN BUHL: CLIMBING WITHOUT COMPROMISE 2000 1st US ed Hardcover DJ New SIGNED by Kurt Diemberger
By Messner, Reinhold and Horst Hofler
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SIGNED by Kurt Diemberger.

Seattle, 2000, 1st edition. 204 pp, 43 color, 83 b/w photos. New hardcover with dust jacket.

Diemberger was the last person to climb with Buhl on Broad Peak and the Chogolisa first ascents.

It is appropriate that Messner write the biography of Buhl, a climber whose abilities rank with Messner's. The story of his many extreme climbs, including the solo first ascent of Nanga Parbat. 

  • Co-author Reinhold Messner is himself a legendary climber deeply influenced by Buhl's accomplishments
  • Draws upon previously unpublished resources and interviews with family and friends
  • Buhl wrote the classic Nanga Parbat Pilgrimage

Mountaineering is a relentless pursuit. One climbs further and further yet never reaches the destination. Perhaps that is what gives it its own particular charm. One is constantly searching for something never to be found.

Hermann Buhl the first man to stand atop Nanga Parbat, and legendary for his will to push himself to the last, was the mountaineer of the 1950s. His account, Nanga Parbat Pilgrimage, has inspired generations of climbers. Yet that classic, shaped and romanticized by a collaborator, does not reveal the man Buhl really was. Now celebrated mountaineer Reinhold Messner and journalist Horst Hofler publish Buhl in his own words, pure and unadorned, in Hermann Buhl: Climbing without Compromise.

Drawing text from Buhl's original climbing diaries, journals, and articles written for mountaineering publications of his time, Messner and Hofler present a portrait of the whole man-strong-willed, creative, and fragile. A loner, rough-edged in his relations with fellow climbers, Buhl took opposition and disagreements heavily to heart. He was demanding as a father, yet he often sang for his young daughters. Though intense and always pushing his limits on the mountain, he displayed a subtle sense of humor in his journals.

Climbing without Compromise also reveals Buhl as an astonishingly modern mountaineer. Indeed, Buhl was a pioneer looking to the future. Buhl lived, above all, for and through his climbing, at a time when no one dreamed about making a living through top alpine achievements. The Buhl Crack on the Cima Canali demonstrates his style as a free climber; his ascent of Broad Peak gives us a glimpse of the super-alpinism of the future.

Had Hermann Buhl been born 40 years later, writes Messner, he would surely have been one of the leading sport climbers, and a classic mountaineer without equal. But the whirlwind of energy that was Hermann Buhl was not destined to live a long life. When a cornice collapsed beneath him on Chogolisa, Buhl became instead a tragic hero of the 20th century.

Hermann Buhl (September 21, 1924 - June 27, 1957) is considered one of the best post-war Austrian climbers and one of the best climbers of all time. His accomplishments include:1953 First ascent of Nanga Parbat, 8,125 metres (26,658 ft.) 1957 First ascent of Broad Peak, 8,047 metres (26,400 ft.) Before his successful Nanga Parbat expedition, 31 people had already died trying to make the first ascent. Buhl is the only mountaineer to have made the first ascent of an Eight-thousander solo. Just a few weeks after their success on Broad Peak, Buhl and Kurt Diemberger attempted nearby Chogolisa peak (7,654 metres). Buhl died when he fell through a cornice on the southeast ridge near the summit of Chogolisa. His body has never been found.


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