The Impossible Climb: A Personal History of Alex Honnold's

The Impossible Climb: A Personal History of Alex Honnold's Free Solo of El Capitan and a Climbing Life Advance Praise for The Impossible ClimbWith the possible exception of the lunar landings, free soloing El Capitan may rank as one of the most audaciousand terrifyingthings a human being has ever done Synnotts narrative plasters you a , foot granite cliff and doesnt let you go until the climb is done It is one of the most compelling accounts of a climb and the climbing ethos that Ive ever read Sebastian Junger,New York Timesbestselling author of Tribe, War,and The Perfect StormMark Synnott s The Impossible Climb is to climbing what William Finnegan s Barbarian Days is to surfing John Long, writer, producer, and pioneer of free solo rock climbing Immensely enjoyable Tapping his own impressive mountaineering resume, Mark Synnott dives deep into the rebellious counterculture of extreme climbing to get inside the head of Alex Honnold, the planet s foremost rock climber What motivated Honnold to free climb El Capitan without a rope Because it s there doesn t come close to explaining it Synnott s The Impossible Climb does Andy Hall, author of Denali s HowlOne of the most compelling accounts of a climb and the climbing ethos that I ve ever read Sebastian JungerThe Impossible Climb climaxes with Alex Honnold s unprecedented, almost unimaginable feat a , foot vertical climb up El Capitan in Yosemite, without a rope Mark Synnott tells the story in the context of a deeply reported account of his ten year friendship with Honnold, multiple climbing expeditions, and the climbing ethos they shareThe climbing community had long considered a free solo ascent of El Capitan an impossible feat so far beyond human limits that it was not worth thinking about When Alex Honnold topped out at am on June having spent fewer than four hours on his historic ascent, the world gave a collective gasp His friend Tommy Caldwell, who free climbed with a rope the nearby Dawn Wall in , called Alex s ascent the moon landing of free soloing TheNew York Times described it as one of the great athletic feats of any kind, ever It was almost unbearable to watch, writes SynnottThis majestic work of personal history delves into a raggedy culture that emerged decades earlier during Yosemite s Golden Age, when pioneering climbers like Royal Robbins and Warren Harding invented the sport that Honnold would turn on its ear Synnott paints an authentic, wry portrait of climbing history, profiling Yosemite heroes John Bachar, Peter Croft, Dean Potter, and the harlequin tribe of climbers known as the Stonemasters A veteran of the North Face climbing team and contributor to National Geographic, Synnott weaves in his own amateur and professional experiences with poignant insight and wit Tensions burst on the mile high northwest face of Pakistan s Great Trango Tower photographer climber Jimmy Chin miraculously persuades an intransigent official in the Borneo jungle to allow Honnold s first foreign expedition, led by Synnott, to continue armed bandits accost the same trio at the foot of a tower in the Chad desertThe Impossible Climb is an emotional drama driven by people exploring the limits of human potential and seeking a perfect, dialed in dance with nature They dare beyond the ordinary, but this story of the sublime is really about all of us Who doesn t need to face down fear and make the most of the time we have


About the Author: Mark Synnott

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