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Sometimes We Forget Sometimes We Forget  by Michael Hoyt

Admit it. Each of us who thoroughly enjoys "the wilderness" has felt probably more than once that were owed such experiences. We convince ourselves that, if for no other reason, wild places should be preserved so we can continue to indulge our desire for solitude. In this, I am as guilty as anyone. But...

A moments reflection brings the realization that Im not the first person who visited any particular wild area of the mountains. Indians, trappers, prospectors, hunters, and farmers walked the mountains, each bushwhacking through deadfall, following animal trails, scratching a living from the land.

In Defiance
of <i>the Edge<i> In Defiance of the Edge  by alpinistahombre

A mountain climber reaches an unattainable feat and either ponders or just bellows-out “Conquest at last!” A great moment of added satisfaction has been acquired, and achievement incurred. Returning back to camp, he or she descends from a great adrenal blitz, and moves to celebrate the day. The climber looks back at the mountain with new admiration, inspiration, and memory. One very small aspect of that mountain was made accessible that day, by Mother Nature—the gatekeeper, and the mystery of that specific route was removed.

Meditations on the Guglia Meditations on the Guglia  by mvs

Last August, despite a long spell of bad weather, I had the pleasure of climbing on the Campanile Basso with my friend Aidan. It was our first visit to the Brenta Range. Starting the hike in late afternoon, we had to laugh at the extended friendly hordes of Italians coming down the trail. It was a hot day and my pack felt heavy. I lazed along, somewhere behind Aidan, but I finally perked up when we saw the massive Crozzon di Brenta in front of us. Actually that's what we wanted to climb, but a big pile of fresh snow covered the top, and the hut warden thought we were crazy to even think about it. We chickened out, but were well rewarded with the Basso.

Friends in
High Places Friends in High Places  by Bob Sihler

At a cocktail party or other social event, I'm the guy standing alone in a corner, nursing his drink and looking distant and disinterested. At a professional seminar, I'm one of the people who heads straight for the back of the room and who finds a way to slip out when the speaker splits people into task-focused groups. When SPers in my area got together over some beers to talk about mountains and whatever else, I knew I was out; had they been planning a hike or climb and then burgers and beers afterward, that would have worked for me, but I wasn't walking cold into a social setting with people I hadn't met before.

Duke, but not Ellington Duke, but not Ellington  by toc

He was born in Madrid to the then king of Spain who abdicated his throne just few weeks after his son's birth and returned to Italy. When six years old, little Luigi was assigned to the Italian Navy and received his entire education in military schools. Before he was 40 he had become one of the greatest mountaineers and explorers of his time.

Adventurer’s Perspective The Adventurer’s Perspective  by alpinistahombre

Counting stars in a night sky is a pastime of analyst-types and over-zealous scientists, but to view a night sky with the widened eyes as an adventurer fills far beyond one's mind, but one's very soul. The everyday tourist is but an enemy to themselves, without knowing so. They travel from colony-to-colony, place-to-place, or region-to-region. Various stops are made to take a photograph of a distant natural feature, to shop a roadside shop, to indulge on a meal, or to simply "take a stretch." Does it ever cross the mind of an everyday tourist, visiting from afar, that there is much to gain on the horizon, much to experience down in that canyon, more to see with the naked eye from that summit, so much more to illuminate them just across that nearby river or stream? Does and everyday tourist feel the "call of the wild" or do they only notice how cold or wet it is "out there"?

Finding my
Inner Republican (or Democrat?) in the Mountains Finding my Inner Republican (or Democrat?) in the Mountains  by AJones

Being Canadian, I knew I needed to know more about the political workings of our friendly, but sometimes scary, neighbour to the south. I was especially interested in whether or not I would be a republican or a democrat. Reading the front page of SummitPost over the last month, I knew where to find my answers – why in the mountains, of course. If folks could find religion and science in the mountains, why I thought, couldn’t I figure out if I was cheering for the republicans or the democrats?

Five Best
Dayhikes of a Lifetime Five Best Dayhikes of a Lifetime  by vancouver islander

Let me emphasise at the outset that this is not written by my obituarist. And while not exactly even in the evening of my life, it’s getting to be late afternoon, and some retrospectives are best handled sooner rather than later. Or, perhaps, I just felt like writing a story to provide diversion on a wet winter afternoon.

I grew up, or at least came to consciousness, in the slums of industrial, smoke-blackened Manchester in the late 1940’s and early 50’s. Post-war rationing was still in effect, war damage was evident everywhere, people were limited in both prospects and personal outlook; there was little optimism to be found anywhere. I don't suppose I thought too much about the grime and poverty that was all around me. I had, after all, nothing else with which to provide a comparison.

Altitude: What Happens to the Human Body In the High Altitude: What Happens to the Human Body In the "Death Zone"  by txmountaineer

The information that follows is not meant as an official account of all the dangers of high altitude climbing, nor has it been prepared by a licensed medical professional. Mountaineering is an extremely high-risk activity and should only be attempted by seasoned professionals. Please consult your physician before attempting any activity at high altitude.

I originally wrote this as a research paper in Fall 2002 for a Physiological Psychology course in college, and thought that some might find it useful here on SP. The original online issue of this Article can be found here.

Finding Science in the
Mountains Finding Science in the Mountains  by BobSmith

When I was sixteen years old, I was sitting on the cliff face of Charlies Bunion in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park with one of my best friends, T---. We were in the midst of a two-week backpacking trip with a pair of other friends from school. Part of this excursion was a series of very leisurely strolls of only a few miles from shelter to shelter along the AT before we would reach Newfound Gap and a ride from his parents to another point farther south along the Appalachian Trail.

As T--- and I surveyed the amazing topography before us, under ideal conditions of clear, blue skies and cool breezes, my friend sat up from where he was reclining on the ancient rock and exclaimed, “How can anyone look at this and not believe in God?”

And I said, as I generally do, the first thing that popped into my head. That thing was, “How can anyone look at this and not believe in Plate Tectonics and erosion?”

“You asshole,” T--- exclaimed, rising and stalking off to where our other two friends were standing, joining his Christian company. Leaving me, as usual, sane man out.

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