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Mountaineering: The Freedom of the Hills

by The Mountaineers Club

Book Review

Cover from the 7th Edition of the book.

This book is basically the “bible” for mountaineers. It contains everything that you might want to know about climbing mountains, digging snow shelters, and tying knots (think prussic and figure-eight). I’ll admit, it has somewhat limited applicability for those of us who currently live in Manitoba, but if you are considering taking up mountaineering or climb regularly, it will serve as a great text. It has sections covering rock climbing, ice climbing, mixed climbing, glacier and alpine travel, equipment, as well as covering most of the fundamentals like “leave no trace”, hypothermia prevention, and map reading.

Here is a short excerpt:

“Lunches and Snacks

During a climb, lunch begins shortly after breakfast and continues throughout the day. Eat small amounts and eat often. At least half of a climber’s daily allotment should be for lunch and snacks. A good munching staple is GORP (originally, “good old raisons and peanuts”), a mixture that can contain peanuts, small candies such as chocolate chips, raisins, and other dehydrated fruit and nuts. GORP and granola are available premixed at many food stores, or make your own. Other popular snack items are fruit leather, candy bars, energy bars, and dried fruits.
To encourage rehydration, mountaineers often enjoy mixing up a flavored beverage such as lemonade or fruit punch at lunch. In cold weather, fill a light thermos with hot water at breakfast, and enjoy a cup of instant soup at lunch. A basic lunch can include any of the following…”

If you can find this 600-page tome at a library it is well worth a gander.