So I never really knew what Patagonia was…

Enduring Patagonia, Gregory Crouch. Before I read this book, I had this vague concept of Patagonia as an icy desert wasteland, and I knew people went there for backpacking or something. I didn’t know there were mountains, which seem to consist of tall but relatively steep and skinny peaks. And I didn’t know it was such a stormy place, where chances to summit these peaks via the many unclimbed faces and routes were so limited by weather.

Crouch is a climber who decided he’d had enough of working crappy jobs to make enough money to get back to Patagonia for more climbing, so he started writing. The book was kind of a choppy read, maybe partially because I read it in spurts but mostly, I think, because of his tendency to jump around. It could have been refined a bit, but the descriptions of Patagonia, the history of climbing there, the tales of the growth of an alpine climber, and the reports of classic routes and first ascents make this book worth reading.

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