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Adirondack Explorer

September, 2016

Bouldering comes of age
Author: Justin Sanford

Review by: Phil Brown

By PHIL BROWN Years ago I often used to see a line of cars parked along McKenzie Pond Road outside Saranac Lake and wonder why they were there. There was no trailhead there, no house, just nondescript woods. Eventually, I learned that those woods harbored a collection of giant boulders and that people would drive for hours to climb them. Not just any people, but hard-core climbers willing to abrade their fingertips on tiny crimps, strain their biceps on overhanging rock, and curse the sky as they labor up routes that are often less than ten feet long. That is, >>More


June, 2016

What makes Alex tick?
Author: Alex Honnold with David Roberts

Review by: R.L. Stolz

BOOK REVIEW By R.L. STOLZ For many folks, the mere notion of climbing a sheer cliff, rising vertically for hundreds—or perhaps thousands—of feet, is the stuff of nightmares. Doing so without a rope, or at breakneck speed, fully understanding that your first mistake will almost certainly be your last, is simply beyond comprehension. Welcome to Alex Honnold’s world. Written from the perspective of the world’s consummate adventure athlete, Honnold’s new book, Alone on the Wall, walks the reader through a series of first-person accounts of his most mind-boggling accomplishments. In April 2008 he stunned the climbing world by soloing the 1,200-foot- all Moonlight Buttress in Zion National Park without a rope. His ascent >>More


November, 2014

Adirondack Rock
Author: Jim Lawyer and Jeremy Haas

Review by: R.L. & Karen Stolz

  A rock-solid guidebook Standing beneath a strikingly steep, six hundred- foot dolomite tower in the Italian Alps, studying a recently published guidebook, we looked up at the rock, perplexed. The route couldn’t go that way! It just couldn’t! And it didn’t. This was our third, and final, time being misled by this beautifully produced, full-color collection of misinformation purporting to be a rock-climbing guidebook to the most beautiful routes in Val Gardena. We unceremoniously stuffed the handsome book into the bottom of a pack and proceeded to climb what appeared to be the most appealing line to the tiny summit. It was, in spite of the guidebook, a pretty good >>More


November, 2013

The Adirondack Slide Guide
Author: Drew Haas

Review by: Phil Brown

Post-Irene slide guide. Tropical Storm Irene did more than change the face of the High Peaks: it rendered The Adirondack Slide Guide by Drew Haas obsolete. Thankfully, Haas has put out a second edition of the book that includes new slides created by Irene in 2011. The new edition follows the format of the first: it’s a softcover publication with large black-and-white aerial photos of dozens of slides, mostly in the High Peaks. All of the photos were taken in winter, when the slides (covered with snow) stand out most against the forested slopes. Slides are long bedrock paths created >>More


September, 2008

Adirondack Rock: A Rock Climber’s Guide
Author: Jim Lawyer and Jeremy Haas

Review by: ALANWECHSLER

Don Mellor, the author of Climbing in the Adirondacks, still remembers the letter he received from some Canadians who used the book to try to find a climbing route. They spent the day bushwhacking through the woods and were not happy about it. “Do you sniff glue? Do you work with strong chemicals?” the climbers asked. The two-page letter was embellished with stick-figure drawings of Mellor being run over by a bus, hanging from a tree and being tossed off a cliff. The lesson: Rock climbers take their guidebooks seriously, and woe to the author who misinforms, even inadvertently. A >>More