Book Review: 1000+ Climbing Tips by Andy Kirkpatrick
1000+ Climbing Tips by Andy Kirkpatrick “is aimed at anyone who hangs off stuff, or just hangs around in the mountains.” When I read that, I figured I was the target audience. Who wouldn’t benefit from a bit of insider knowledge from a legendary climber like Kirkpatrick?
Kirkpatrick has an enormous collection of climbing knowledge bouncing around in that British brain and he wants to share what he’s learned through his experiences in the mountains. Whether you climb rock or alpine routes, these tips will make a difference in your climbing game.
Kirkpatrick’s tips are both witty and knowledgeable. It seems to me that just about anyone – novice to expert – could read this book and learn something valuable. The topics in the book include first aid, ropes, knots, jumaring, haul bags, sponsorships, snow shelters, crevasses, and the list goes on. It’s not in-depth, but instead it provides useful and easily digestible information broken into broad sections like:
- Big Wall
Kirkpatrick’s 1000+ Climbing Tips is worth picking up if you want to fine tune your climbing game. It’s far from an instruction book, but if you can apply only a handful of his tips, you’ll avoid a heap of headaches. Here’s a random collection of tips from the book that I enjoyed:
- 198. Try and ‘climb quietly’ like a ninja, placing your feet as if the holds are made of egg shells.
- 207. If you begin to get pumped try and get to a hold where you can take some strain off your arms, and shake out. Shaking out with your elbows above your heart is more effective than doing it in the traditional way behind your back.
- 522. Don’t forget a thimble, which will protect your delicate fingers and can also be used to drink whisky from if you want to give the impression you’re a Viking giant.
- 885. Survivability. … The harder you are to kill, the longer you will live.
- 898. If you haven’t laughed or smiled for 24 hours, you need to rethink what you’re doing.
The tips are quality. They make you smile, scratch your head, laugh, and wish you were already doing that. You will learn something from this book. I read this book cover to cover and I picked up quite a few useful nuggets of information.
One thing about the book bugged me though. Even though spelling and grammar are addressed on page 10 in bold, this book really needed someone to edit it for typos and grammatical mistakes. It’s amazing how many writing errors slipped through the cracks. This is a minor thing and doesn’t take away from the core content of the book. I know I make plenty of mistakes too.
I also really enjoyed the few images and diagrams included in the book. I wish there had been more – a picture is worth a thousand words.
Overall, I do recommend picking up a copy of Kirkpatrick’s 1000+ Climbing Tips. Take it to the crag, bring it with you in a tent, leave it in a car when you’re stuck in traffic, but read it. Learn a tip or two a day. You’re climbing game will improve and you’ll avoid lots of mistakes and headaches that everyone else has had to learn the hard way.
Andy Kirkpatrick is the real deal. He’s put up big climbs all over the planet during a 30+ year career. From Patagonia to El Cap to the Dru, Kirkpatrick’s been there and this book shares the tips and tricks that he’s learned along the way. Kirkpatrick has written several books on climbing. Be sure to add them to your library.
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1000+ Climbing Tips by Andy Kirkpatrick
Date: 12 June 2015
Format: E-Book & Paperback