No Shortcuts to the Top: Climbing the World's 14 Highest Peaks

No Shortcuts to the Top: Climbing the World's 14 Highest Peaks

This gripping and triumphant memoir follows a living legend of extreme mountaineering as he makes his assault on history, one 8,000-meter summit at a time.

For eighteen years Ed Viesturs pursued climbing’s holy grail: to stand atop the world’s fourteen 8,000-meter peaks, without the aid of bottled oxygen. But No Shortcuts to the Top is as much about the man who would become the first American to achieve that goal as it is about his stunning quest. As Viesturs recounts the stories of his most harrowing climbs, he reveals a man torn between the flat, safe world he and his loved ones share and the majestic and deadly places where only he can go.

A preternaturally cautious climber who once turned back 300 feet from the top of Everest but who would not shrink from a peak (Annapurna) known to claim the life of one climber for every two who reached its summit, Viesturs lives by an unyielding motto, “Reaching the summit is optional. Getting down is mandatory.” It is with this philosophy that he vividly describes fatal errors in judgment made by his fellow climbers as well as a few of his own close calls and gallant rescues. And, for the first time, he details his own pivotal and heroic role in the 1996 Everest disaster made famous in Jon Krakauer's Into Thin Air.

In addition to the raw excitement of Viesturs’s odyssey, No Shortcuts to the Top is leavened with many funny moments revealing the camaraderie between climbers. It is more than the first full account of one of the staggering accomplishments of our time; it is a portrait of a brave and devoted family man and his beliefs that shaped this most perilous and magnificent pursuit.

Title:No Shortcuts to the Top: Climbing the World's 14 Highest Peaks
Edition Language:English
ISBN:9780767924702
Format Type:

    No Shortcuts to the Top: Climbing the World's 14 Highest Peaks Reviews

  • Petra-X

    Although there is no official series of the Everest disaster of 1996 where 8 people died in a blizzard, This book, Krakauer's Into Thin Air, Boukreev's The Climb: Tragic Ambitions on Everest, Kropp's ...

  • Judd

    I got the opportunity to climb with Ed Viesturs on Rainier in July 2010. It was by accident and only for half an hour. I didn't know who he was at the time, but as he welcomed me onto his rope halfway...

  • Maria V. Snyder

    I am an armchair adventurer - I love reading these stories about hardship, freezing cold temperatures, dangerous conditions and general misery while I'm wrapped up in a blanket, cozy warm and with a s...

  • Becky

    While I absolutely respect Ed Viesturs not just for his accomplishments in mountaineering but also for his efforts to maximize safety, to rescue stranded climbers, tohelp scientists understand HACE an...

  • Vanessa

    BookRiot 2018 Read Harder Challenge #6: A book about natureI read the reviews, so I know there is a whole cult of people, myself included, who can't get enough of mountain climbing books ever since th...

  • Cory verner

    It's impossible not to respect Ed Viesturs accomplishments. That does not mean you need to love his writing. I found the book interesting, primarily because I am passionate about climbing mountains my...

  • Lori

    While I found reading about all the mountain expeditions interesting, I had a problem connecting with the author. I think he reminded the reader too many times about how great he was at making decisio...

  • Dannie

    The stories jumped all over the place, both in chronology and in length. And although the message is about getting down the mountain safely, the theme isn't interesting enough to play through the whol...

  • Amar Pai

    Ed Viesturs is kind of a dweeb, but I have to admit he's a workhorse superman. One foot in front of the other, repeat, repeat, repeat. He said at the top of some summits you have to take 15 breaths fo...

  • Agnese

    The life of a mountaineer and his pursuit of the fourteen 8000ers. A very engaging book that succeeds in depicting the passion, determination, and emotional waves that animate Viesturs and lead him re...