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Measure of a Mountain: Beauty and Terror on Mount Rainier Paperback – April 10, 2007
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Copyright 1997 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
Top Customer Reviews
The history is well done; the story the early history of the park were very interesting. And his is the most complete account of the Army airplane crash into the Tacoma Glacier that I've ever read.
He mentioned a couple of other books that I've been grateful to learn about: "The unpublished journals of John Muir" (published now, of course) and "Mountain Fever", an account of the early ascents of Mt. Rainier, both of which I've got now, and one of which I've read.
I feel I've learned something fairly profound from this book. He climbed to the summit and still doesn't appreciate the urge that drives people to do that sort of thing. He felt nothing at the summit, or at Camp Muir, except an emptiness. When I climb, it's always a deeply meaningful experience: last time I was on the summit, I called my wife on the cell phone, and was actually in tears. Each time I climb Mt. Rainier, even if it's just a hike up to Camp Muir, I feel on the descent a tremendous reluctance to leave, and keep looking back for one last look of the icefalls, the massive, serene, intricately shaped rock formations. For me, climbing Mt. Rainer is like visiting a lover, and each time I leave, to return to my life, my job, my wife, the question "but when will I get to see you again?" looms largest.
So I might be expected to reject his experience, or his interpretation.Read more ›
It is readily apparent that this book is a labor of love for the author. He revels in any and all information about the mountain that he can track down. All of his studies of the mountain add flavor to his own wanderings. He sees in the mountain all of the history, geology, native folklore, and danger that it deserves. His respect is palpable and his experiences are priceless. If you want to experience Rainier in a different way than you ever have before, you need to check this out.
This book is well written, an easy read, and highly recommended.
It's hard to categorize this book. It's not really about climbing mountains, though there is plenty of that. It's not really about geology, though there is plenty of that as well. It's not about ecology, though ecologists will certainly connect with Barcott, and it's not really about history, even though there are lots of interesting historical tidbits sprinkled throughout the book. The book is sort of a mish mash of all these subjects that Barcott ultimately ties in with the mountain that defines Washington State, and Seattle in particular: Rainier.
It's hard to say what part of the book I enjoyed the most. I really enjoyed the stories about the mountain's "real" name. Even though I grew up in Federal Way, Washington I never knew about the battle waged by Tacoma in trying to rename Rainier with it's original (or at least one of them) Indian name. There are other interesting historical footnotes like the military plane carrying marines home for the Christmas holidays that slammed into the mountain. And, of course, there are stories about early climbers like Muir.
Barcott describes lots of his hikes around Rainier, particularly the wonderland trail, and he ends the book with an account of his climb to the summit. As it turned out, I had climbed Rainier in June of the same year Barcott climbed it (he climbed in July) and so it was interesting comparing my recollection of the trip with his.
Barcott tries hard not to come across as the typical macho, climb-or-die mountaineer.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
I enjoyed reading this book and learning much about the various aspects about this grand mountain. Author shares personal stories of backpacking along trails on the lower portions... Read morePublished 29 days ago by Todd
very real to life and bone chilling in places. I've hiked (NOT climbed) this mountain several times. Such beauty! Such daring!Published 7 months ago by Dr. Beth
I really enjoyed this book. An adventure that took place on MT Rainier......we call it "our mountain" which added to the good read.Published 12 months ago by Nan
Recommended by a friend prior to going to Rainier. It was an ok read but not one I'd recommend unless you had an interest in going on a guided trip to Rainier.Published 13 months ago by Taylor Sheppard
A great read about Rainier but the author would sometimes go off on miscellaneous tangents. Having climbed Rainier we seemed to have had drastically different summiting... Read morePublished 14 months ago by Joey Daoud
A classic extended essay on Seattle's mountain: its natural history including its insects, mammals and awesome geomorphology; its early history; and, recent human tragedies. Read morePublished 21 months ago by Charles Bookman