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Climbing » Narratives

The Last Step

The American Ascent of K2


In September 1978, Rick Ridgeway, Jim Wickwire, Lou Reichardt and John Roskelley stood on the summit of K2, the first Americans ever to achieve this victory. Under the leadership of Jim Whittaker, they and their teammates had spent 67 days on the mountain, nearly all of them above 18,000 feet, where the stresses of high-altitude living, of monotonous food, of confinement in tiny tents for day after day of frustrating storms had worn them down to the core.

The Last Step is Rick Ridgeway's inside story of this extraordinary expedition. It's about the people who, battered by the mountain and their isolation, overcame their individual fears, desire, and disappointments to work together to get somebody - anybody - to the top of K2. It's about the glorious success the team achieved, and about the perilous bivouac Jim Wickwire spent just below the summit without food, oxygen or shelter in temperatures of minus 40F.

A mountaineering classic reintroduced with a 32-page colour insert, as well as a new foreword by mountaineer and Patagonian founder Yvon Chouinard.

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Cordee Code: CNL104
No of Pages: 384
Page Size: 152 x 228 mm
ISBN 10: 1594858616
ISBN 13: 9781594858611
Publisher: Mountaineers Books
Published Date: July 2014
Edition: 2014 edition
Binding: Paperback
Illustrations: Colour photos
Weight: 650g

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No Way Down: Life and Death on K2

Graham Bowley


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