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HIGH OVER BOULDER Pat Ament and Cleve McCarty 1985 4th ed Fine
By Ament, Pat and Cleve McCarty
Price: $25.00


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Detailed Product Description
Colorado, 1985, 4th edition. 480+ pp, b/w photos and route diagrams. Used paperback in Fine condition.

This was the largest edition of High Over Boulder ever published. It includes the Flatirons, Boulder Canyon, Eldorado, Flagstaff, and more. 

From John Gill's Website:

Pat Ament: Pat and I first met in 1967, just after I had moved to Fort Collins. The friendship that resulted from our first encounter has lasted 36 years. Although ten years my junior, we had, in common the most important thing two climbers can have in common: remarkably similar perspectives of our craft.

We were both gymnasts, and Pat, independently, had started using chalk in climbing only a few years after I had introduced it elsewhere. We both viewed rock climbing as an extension of gymnastics. What I had in pulling strength, Pat had in pressing strength. He could do a hollowback press to handstand from the floor, followed by a number of handstand push-ups. He once held a one-arm handstand on the parallel bars for 18 seconds (I don't think I ever went beyond 5). Along with one-arm mantels on the rock, he could also do a very slow and controlled muscle-up on the high bar, rotating both elbows simultaneously a very difficult feat.

But, most importantly for our friendship, we were aware of spiritual or mystical dimensions of the sport. We also thought of our climbing as an artistic endeavor.

Pat is a significant artist. He is a prolific writer, having written literally dozens of books about various aspects of climbing, including an original guidebook High Over Boulder, that set benchmarks for precision and accuracy. He is a composer, pianist, and singer, and his line drawings are superb. He is also, and fundamentally, a poet. The balance he has achieved between the physical realm including being a black belt Karate instructor and the artistic or spiritual realm is extraordinary.

Now, for a few words about his climbing feats. Besides setting new bouldering standards at Flagstaff Mountain in Boulder during the 1960s, he made significant climbs in Colorado and Yosemite. Pat's ascent of Supremacy Crack in Eldorado Canyon at the age of eighteen in 1965 established one of the hardest short climbs in the country. He authored the first 5.11 in Yosemite - the Center Slack at the base of El Cap - as well.

He is also a true master of safety in climbing , having the ability to place adequate protection in even the most barren of traditional climbs. Pat was a leading innovator and experimented with various approaches to rock climbing during a transitionary era, fraught with ethical dilemmas, toward the end of the Golden Age. He raised a few waves because of this and because of a powerful intellect and a quiet but forceful attitude, not averse to philosophical and verbal argument.

He has weathered these minor squalls with determination and resiliency, and to some extent, I think they define him. He is a rare renaissance man in an age of increasing specialization. The only true poet I know who weaves his spell upon the rock as well. (2003)

Cleve McCarty
Cleve McCarty died Tuesday July 3, 2018 at the age of 85, leaving behind a legacy of outdoor pioneering.

McCarty helped to literally write the book on climbing in the area when he teamed up with Pat Ament to pen High Over Boulder, which was published in 1970. The inspiration came when McCarty found himself dangling off of a cliff while climbing in Boulder in the 50s.

"We thought we were on the Maiden," McCarty told the Boulder Daily Camera in 2006, referring to a formation among the Flatirons. "We got to the summit of this rock pinnacle that was similar to the Maiden, and started to rappel off the west side. But our ropes weren't long enough. The Maiden was 110 feet, but we were on the Matron. We had to come all the way back up."

Pat Ament at the time was still in junior high, but already an experienced climber with ideas of writing a climbing guide himself. When McCarty heard about the youngster, he sought him out. "He just showed up at my parents' house," Ament said. "And he was such a nice guy and was energetic and had all this good stuff and photos. And we thought it would be a better book if we agreed to team up."

As the more experienced climber, Ament handled much of the details about technical climbing, but McCarty used his knowledge of the local trails and his own sketches to complete the guide. "We wanted it to have a sense of humor, and not just be a boring technical read," Ament said. "Much of that was Cleve's creativity."

As the two got to know each other better, Ament said he found out McCarty's energy and enthusiasm carried over to every aspect of his life. "Cleve had an energy about him that was just infectious," Ament said. "He was excited about everything you were doing, and he always had a big smile on his face."

Ament recalled an instance in which he, McCarty and some other climbers got caught on a peak during a lightning storm. "I was sitting there thinking we were going to get hit by lightning," Ament said. "And Cleve just had this big smile on his face and said, "As long as you can see it (the lightning), you're still alive!" That was Cleve, for sure.

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