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Rock Climbing Photo: Cover

Ansel Adams - American Experience

Ric Burns - Director (c) 2002 Sierra Club and Steeplechase Films

Not particularly a film about climbing, but rather the life and works of Ansel Adams - whose plates of the High Sierra and the Yosemite remain as the datum-point of California mountain imagery.

Parts of this documentary capture the haunting spirit of the High Sierra like no other film before.

If you need a reason to join your local PBS, or The Sierra Club, this is it. Just the thought that my few measley bucks contributed to this gives me a warm and fuzzy feeling.
Rock Climbing Photo: Cover of 3rd Ed.

The High Sierra - Peaks, Passes, and Trails

R.J.Secor 3rd edition (c) 2009 The Mountaineers

R.J.Secor's bumper book of fun for the Sierra is still the quintessential High Sierra guidebook for people who want to get the big picture, and learn all about a mountain range bigger than the entire Alps.
Rock Climbing Photo: Cover

My First Summer in the Sierra

John Muir, published by the Sierra Club

Muir gleaned some of the truth of the Universe just by merely existing in it's wild and beautiful regions (can it be that simple?) - his idea that everything is connected predates Sagan and all scientific observations.

This volume in the John Muir Library Series is the most popular of Muir's works: the naturalist's account of his first visit to the High Sierra and the Yosemite.
Rock Climbing Photo: Cover

Close Ups of the High Sierra

Norman Clyde (c) 2004 Spotted Dog Press

Norman Clyde was the most prolific first ascentionist in the history of climbing in this range - so it's a good idea to read what he thought of climbing here. An expanded and illustrated edition of Norman Clyde's classic, with new stories added for the first time.
Rock Climbing Photo: Cover

The Last Season

© Copyright 2005 Eric Blehm - HarperCollins

This, the story of the life and mysterious disappearance of Randy Morgenson, High Sierra Backcountry Ranger, makes for a compelling read - and along the way describes some of the places we've either been or would love to be - some hauntingly so, or perhaps it just my sense of nostalgia.

It's a great read.
Rock Climbing Photo: Cover

A Climber's Guide to the High Sierra

Edited by Hervey Voge (c) 1954 Sierra Club
The entire range including climbs in the Yosemite! Out of print, try to find it at used book stores. Contains mountain plates by Ansel Adams himself.
Rock Climbing Photo: Cover

The Climber's Guide to the High Sierra

Steve Roper (c) 1995 re-issue Sierra Club

The final version of Hervey Voge's original. My first guidebook to the High Sierra and one you could actually take with you - I think I read it more lying in a tent than at home.
Rock Climbing Photo: Cover

The Good, The Great, and the Awesome

Peter Croft (c) 2002 Maximus Press

Peter Croft's down to earth route descriptions will inform and entertain you. Another "select" work which also contains roadside cragging, and eateries in the local towns.
Rock Climbing Photo: Cover

Climbing California's High Sierra

John Moynier, Claude Fiddler 2nd edition (c) 2002 The Globe Pequot Press

Originally known as 100 Sierra Classics this book is somewhere halfway between the select works and the full blown Secor guide. Contains schematics and historical data etc.
Rock Climbing Photo: Cover

Climbing California's Fourteeners

Stephen F.Porcella & Cameron M.Burns (c) 1998 The Mountaineers

Routes on the peaks of the range which are > 14,000ft. Contains historical information and useful schematics of the more sterner stuff.
Rock Climbing Photo: Cover

High Sierra Climbing

Chris McNamara (c) 2013 Supertopo

Yes, yet another Sierra select featuring detailed topos of "40 of the best" rock climbs in the backcountry.
Rock Climbing Photo: Cover

Mountaineering in California

Clarence King (1902) Yosemite Association

Great fun! A ripping Victorian yarn (true story nevertheless) about how famous explorer Clarence King and two of his buddies made an epic excursion from west of the Great Western Divide over to the High Sierra crest in order to bag the highest peak, and managed to bag the wrong one! Written in the days when the American public were hungry for tales of exploration and adventure instead of being just plain hungry.

The purchase link now opens a free online text edition.
Rock Climbing Photo: Cover

Missing in the Minarets

William Alsup (c) 2005 Yosemite Association

The Search for Walter A. Starr, Jr. (sub-title)

A real page turner for those of us interested in climbing history, I won't say any more.
Rock Climbing Photo: Cover

Starr's Guide to the John Muir Trail and the High Sierra Region

Walter A.Starr 12th edition (c) 1974 Sierra Club Books

Lovingly prepared. The original guide on how to get in and out of the High Sierra, originally published in the 1930's and still quite valid today, thanks to the conservationists. Any edition is worthwhile and used books stores often carry more than one - the older the better.

Early Days in the Range of Light: Encounters with Legendary Mountaineers

Daniel Arnold

It's 1873. Gore-Tex shells and aluminum climbing gear are a century away, but the high mountains still demand your attention. Imagine the stone in your hands and thousands of feet of open air below you, with only a wool jacket to weather a storm and no rope to catch a fall.

Daniel Arnold did more than imagine — he spent three years retracing the steps of his climbing forefathers, and in Early Days in the Range of Light, he tells their riveting stories. From 1864 to 1931, the Sierra Nevada witnessed some of the most audacious climbing of all time. In the spirit of his predecessors, Arnold carried only rudimentary equipment — no ropes, no harness, no specialized climbing shoes. Sometimes he left his backpack and sleeping bag behind as well, and, like John Muir, traveled for days with only a few pounds of food rolled into a sack slung over his shoulder.

In an artful blend of history, biography, nature, and adventure writing, Arnold brings to life the journeys and the terrain traveled. In the process he uncovers the motivations that drove an extraordinary group of individuals to risk so much for airy summits and close contact with bare stone and snow.

Mountain Project

The Definitive Climbing Resource

MTB Project

Next Generation MTB Trail Maps

Powder Project

Backcountry Ski Maps & Secret Stashes
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