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Mountaineering: The Freedom of the Hills Paperback – October, 1997


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 528 pages
  • Publisher: Mountaineers Books; 6th Rev edition (October 1997)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0898864275
  • ISBN-13: 978-0898864274
  • Product Dimensions: 7.3 x 1.5 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.8 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (112 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #839,657 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com Review

This updated edition of the mountaineering classic is an essential reference for novices and experts alike. Chapters are devoted to in-depth discussions of outdoors fundamentals; climbing techniques for rock, snow, and ice; safety procedures and emergency response; geology and weather; and appendices for climb ratings and supplementary reading, among other topics. Detailed sections on navigation, ropes, knots, and protection include drawings, diagrams, and maps. Enjoy the freedom of the hills to the fullest with this thorough guide.

From Publishers Weekly

This hefty tome, first published in 1960, was the book that started The Mountaineers Books. Known as "the climber's bible," it covers virtually all aspects of climbing, from choosing equipment and tying knots to basic rappelling techniques and expedition planning. There are sections on rock climbing, alpine climbing, emergency prevention and response and snow cycles, along with appendices on wind chill temperatures and suggestions for further reading. This seventh edition, written by a team of more than 40 expert climbers, reflects changes in equipment and technique, with new chapters on waterfall ice climbing and mixed climbing, physical conditioning, and land stewardship issues. It's also enhanced with 415 new illustrations depicting the "chimney technique" and the "twin-rope technique," among other maneuvers, and a new "ten essentials" list. Although the prose is workmanlike at best ("understanding fall factor and how it determines impact forces is fundamental to safe leading"), this work remains a must-have for climbing enthusiasts.
Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Customer Reviews

4.9 out of 5 stars
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The illustrations are also great...very clear and informative.
James
I picked up a variety of climbing books while working at Mount Rainier in Washington this summer...one of which was Mountaineering, Freedom of the Hills.
Christina C. Forbes
I would highly recommend this book to anyone that has an interest in the outdoors.
John Ingle

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

23 of 24 people found the following review helpful By P. Morelli on January 31, 2005
Format: Hardcover
This book has managed to condense all the fundamentals of (outdoor) climbing - from rock to ice- and to present them in an easily understandable and concise format. I found it invaluable as a beginner and have continued using it as a reference book. If you take climbing seriously, you will probably buy some other books on more specialized techniques down the line, but this book is where you should start. Nothing essential is missing. The book is also very good at pointing out all the ways you could possibly make mistakes, so you don't make them.

FYI, this book does not go so much into training for climbing as it does the skills and knowledge you will need to climb. (For rock climbing, the best book on *training* I've found is "Performance Rock Climbing".) It also does not go too much into first aid, but the publisher of this book also puts out a book on wilderness medicine if you are interested...
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20 of 22 people found the following review helpful By Michael Knoll on October 28, 2001
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Here in Seattle -- where mountaineering is almost a religion -- Freedom of the Hills is to climbing skills what Fred Beckey's Cascade Alpine Guide is to climbing routes: the bible. It's the fundamental textbook for the Seattle Mountaineers' climbing curriculum, reputed to be the most thorough and rigorous in the Pacific Northwest and perhaps in the country. Virtually every sentence in Freedom of the Hills has a piece of information that has helped me in the mountains. I've re-read portions so many times that my 1979 copy is more tattered than your grandmother's New Testament. Since I first read Freedom of the Hills I've climbed dozens of peaks in Washington's Cascades and Olympics -- on steep snow, ice, technical rock, and glaciers, you name it. I've been through the Ptarmigan Traverse, up eight peaks in the Pickets, and atop Rainier three times. To put it bluntly, if I'd attempted these climbs without the knowledge and skills in this book, by now I would certainly be dead. So, before you go up there: Take a class. Read this book. Stay alive. . . . Okay, I gotta go. I'm buying four more copies of this book right now to send to friends in Colorado.
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12 of 13 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on August 9, 1999
Format: Paperback
I have a huge, thick copy right here and it is the bomb. Want to know somethin' about the mountain experience? Everything is here in the book. Every serious and safe climber has read from it. Read it, you'll see why it's the best source to turn to. Even Alex Lowe calls it "an essential...remarkable compilation." Yeah Baby! :) Read & Climb On!
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11 of 12 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on August 6, 1997
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I own a first edition copy of Mountaineering: Freedom of the Hills, as well as the current edition, and several editions in between. I can not imagine a person being interested in Mountaineering, Rock Climbing, Ice Climbing, etc.and not wanting to own a copy of this book, especially now that it is available in the more affordable paperback edition.

I first started rock climbing in 1971, before it became as popular as it is today, most, if not all, of what my climbing partner and I knew of climbing, from technique to equipment, came from Mountaineering: Freedom of the Hills.

Of all the climbing/mountaineering books that I own, Mountaineering: Freedom of the Hills never seems to make it back to its spot on the bookshelf
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10 of 11 people found the following review helpful By K. H. Kikstra on June 11, 2002
Format: Paperback
As summer season is approaching in the northern hemisphere; many mountaineers are getting ready to climb again.
Whether you are just starting out with hillwalking or you sharpen your icetools weekly, this is the one book that rightly is known as 'the bible of mountaineering'.
You will never know too much about the versatility of mountaineering and I recommend this book for every climber, hiker or armchair mountaineer.
Over 500 pages filled with clear drawings of techniques and knowledge.
Everything from building a snowcave to using a 'Texan prusik' and rockclimbing technique is covered.
Mountaineering is not just one of these disciplines, it's always a mixture of everything and therefore it is good to have knowledge on all aspects before you head out into the wild, whether it's Denali or that big boulder in the park.
This is the only book around truly covering 'Mountaineering'; it's a classic and if all great mountaineers own a copy and still read it, why shouldn't you?
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9 of 10 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on July 24, 1998
Format: Hardcover
The remarkable thing about this book is that it combines both broad scope (alpine mountaineering, rock climbing, ice climbing, and "expedition issues" are all covered) and enough depth that the reader gets accurate, useful technical details on how to do virtually everything. No matter your present skill level, interests, and plans -- from peak bagging to cragging to big walls to alpine expeditions -- the full gamut of climbing is covered in detail. Special, high quality chapters on subjects such as land navigation, geology, and snow and ice mechanics that are generally omitted from most climbing manuals are covered superbly well here. This is truly the "Climber's Bible" -- the one book that every mountain traveller really must read and refer to again and again.
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful By E. Arentsen on August 3, 2004
Format: Paperback
This book is a comprehensive overview of nearly all aspects of climbing and mountaineering, kind of like an undergraduate survey class, and I recommend it as a core part of any climber's reference library. I owned the third edition and recently purchased and read through (cover to cover) the seventh edition. Because the book covers all of climbing from simple one day rock climbs to technical multi-day expeditions in a variety of climates and conditions it cannot go into as much detail as books dedicated to specific aspects or types of climbing. For example, if you are an ice climber you would do well to follow this book up with a book dedicated solely to ice climbing. What this book does provide in an unparalleled format, is a thorough grounding in all basic climbing techniques, basic rescue procedures, elementary first-aid for mountaineering, geology and meteorology basics, and a variety of either useful things that will make anyone a more complete climber.
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