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Climbing essay "A Narrow Ledge" on Amazon


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My essay A Narrow Ledge has been released as a Kindle Single on Amazon. It’s about a Rainier climb I took this May, and also about how climbing has changed me as a person, how risk-taking strengthens the mind, when this risk-taking crosses into irresponsibility for a guy with a wife and kids, and my striving for the sweet spot (the narrow ledge) between safety and oblivion.


CC.com and TAY.com both get a mention. I talk about the role these sites play in herding a scattered group of iconoclasts, fomenting friendly competition and (for some of us) subtly ratcheting up the pressure to go ever faster, lighter, steeper. I talk about what it’s like to learn of a friend or partner’s death on social media, which I have experienced on cc.com on more than one occasion.


This essay is intended for the armchair adventurer. It is possible that inveterate cc.com hardmen may also find it a good read. Post comments on barronbrown.net, or send me a PM, or post a review on Amazon.


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Strong enough to give offense on TAY.com.

I take issue with family men like me putting themselves in harm's way. I explain that my righteous indignation springs from personal guilt that I've played recklessly with my family's future. I speculate how the family of a dead climber must feel. The poster's issue is that I make these speculations in context of the death that occurred on Shuksan N Face this May. He says I should not assume to know how this man's family felt at the time. I can see his point.


I have seen John Muir's grave. His body rests between two back yards in a Bay Area suburb. Couldn't say how deep he is under.

Edited by Norman_Clyde
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