- Use promo code GIFTBOOK18 to save $5.00 when you spend $20.00 or more on Books shipped and sold by Amazon.com. Enter code GIFTBOOK18 at checkout. Here's how (restrictions apply)
Enter your mobile number or email address below and we'll send you a link to download the free Kindle App. Then you can start reading Kindle books on your smartphone, tablet, or computer - no Kindle device required.
To get the free app, enter your mobile phone number.
Other Sellers on Amazon
+ Free Shipping
+ $3.00 shipping
+ Free Shipping
Mountaineering in the Sierra Nevada Paperback – March 1, 1997
Frequently bought together
Customers who bought this item also bought
Special offers and product promotions
"A fine book . . . [that] will please the mountain climber and allow him to enjoy his precarious pastime within the safe confines of his armchair."--"New York Times"
"Mountaineering is the first real literature of the Sierra, and, as a book of familiar travels in unfamiliar places in America, it brooks no equal."--"Pacific Historian"
"Scientifically accurate as well as charmingly descriptive of the region."--James D. Hart, "The Oxford Companion to American Literature" -- James D. Hart "The Oxford Companion to American Literature"
From the Back Cover
A bona fide classic, originally published in 1872, Mountaineering in the Sierra Nevada is still exciting reading. It describes the perils and pleasures experienced by Clarence King (1842-1901) while conducting the first geological survey of California in the 1860s. His language was equal to the marvels he found, and here with unfading brilliance are his accounts of scaling such mountains as Tyndall, Shasta, and Whitney. The chapters on the Yosemite Valley and surrounding High Sierras were written while he was surveying the boundaries of a newly designated national park. There are also delightful vignettes of western characters, including a Sierra artist and a family of Pike County hog farmers. King, who in 1879 became the first director of the United States Geological Survey, will always be remembered for Mountaineering in the Sierra Nevada, which was praised by Wallace Stegner, Van Wyck Brooks, and Henry Seidel Canby as a watermark of frontier literature.
Try the Kindle edition and experience these great reading features:
Showing 1-8 of 21 reviews
There was a problem filtering reviews right now. Please try again later.
Clarence King was a gifted wordsmith. His hilarious, politically incorrect descriptions of western characters are reminiscent of some of the best incisive commentary of Mark Twain. Then his descriptions of climbing in the mountains are so intense that you may even wince as you are carried along as he describes some of the most hair-raising brushes with death. Those who have been where King describes will certainly feel what King has written as they read along.
One reviewer, though entertained, seems to doubt what King says. I don't. Though there may be a little hyperbole in King's description of events, the reader should remember that at that time the average guy was far more physically fit than the average guy today. You had to be or you didn't make it, because every day in the wilderness was fraught with challenge and physical danger.
All in all, you could say that this book is a collection of bold tales well told. I particularly like the stories of his crossing the desert coming to California, of the hog farmers, of his escape from determined bandits, of his ultimate conquest of Mt Whitney, and of all the colorful characters he meets in his path both in the Sierras and at Shasta.
And though some might take him for a bigot because of some of his comments about the natives, remember that he saves the sharpest point of his pen for the most worthless characters of his own stock who abound in the California of his day. Whatever you think about what King has written, once you pick this up you'll find it hard to put down until you've finished the last paragraph.
Clarence King preceded Muir into High Sierras as a geologist, surveyor and cartographer. He ended up writing great tales of local characters, about his horse, barely surviving a blizzard on the rim on the Yosemite, mountain climbing and escaping bandits.
It is a personal history that should never have been forgotten.