California, Sierra Club Books, 1997, 1st edition. 190 pp, 93 color photos by Rowell, Hatcher, Wald. Large Format Hardcover, Dust Jacket. Fine condition.
This is a heavy large format hardcover book; extra postage will be requested for Priority Mail and International Mail.
Piana's ascents of El Cap's Salathe, Direct NW Face of Half Dome, Mt
Hooker and Great Canadian Knife, have led us into a new epoch in
climbing. Big Walls offers a unique view into a world of extraordinary high adventure, in which fiercely driven climbers scale the highest and most beautiful rock faces on the planet. In this remarkable book, renowned climber Paul Piana vividly recounts his and longtime climbing partner Todd Skinner’s revolutionary first free-climbing ascents of the four premier rock faces of North America: El Capitan’s Salathe Wall, the Direct North West Face of Half Dome, Wyoming’s Mount Hooker, and the Great Canadian Knife.
Demanding remarkable inner confidence and instincts honed over many years, these free–climbing ascents were accomplished using nothing more than the climbers’ own strength and determination. “We rejected any aid from equipment,” writes Paul. “We wouldn’t use it to pull ourselves up, nor would we hang from it in order to rest. We would utilize our ropes and equipment only for safety. Rather than relying on nylon ladders and hardware to climb the sheer walls, we would utilize only the strength in our hands and the creativity in our minds.”
Illustrated with 93 spectacular color photographs of these harrowing ascents, Piana’s compelling narrative evokes the dramatic highs and challenging lows of their many adventures, from the heartstopping fall off El Capitan that broke Skinner’s ribs and snapped Piana’s leg in five places, to their euphoric arrival on the summit of Mount Proboscis. Filled with exciting detail that will appeal to mountaineering enthusiasts everywhere, Big Walls is a fascinating account of four supremely challenging climbs that are truly worthy of the term historic.
About the Author: Paul Piana was born in Newcastle, Wyoming, in 1954. Recognized as one of rock climbing’s most influential and prolific free climbers, he has over 600 first ascents to his credit and has established climbs at the highest free-climbing standard for over two decades. Piana has written numerous articles and stories for major mountaineering magazines, and has appeared in many climbing adventure films and videos. In 1988, with Todd Skinner, he shared the American Alpine Club’s most prestigious award, the Underhill Award for Lifetime Climbing. Piana lives in Lander, Wyoming.