Book Review: Continental Divide: A History Of American Mountaineering by Maurice Isserman
Are you fascinated by mountains? Do you enjoy reading inspiring tales of mountain adventures? Are you naturally drawn to the high peaks? If so, you need to pick up a copy of Continental Divide: A History Of American Mountaineering by Maurice Isserman.
In Continental Divide, Isserman careful chronicles the mountains of North America and the legendary explorers who first ventured into those wild mountains. Every mountain enthusiast will enjoy Isserman’s historical mountaineering novel. This is a true mountain journey that spans centuries of mountain exploration beginning in 1642 and continuing through today.
While this book could easily be a dull read, Isserman’s writing style breathes life into mountaineering exploits in the White Mountains, the Appalachians, the Rockies, the Sierras, Alaska, Yosemite, Himalayas, and beyond. From sheer rock faces to snowy ridges to towering summits, it’s interesting to read about the men and women who first explored the mountains we all know and love.
Beyond the specific mountains, Isserman tells the tales of the mountain legends we all admire – John Muir, Bradford Washburn, Fred Beckey, Kit Carson, Royal Robbins, Yvon Chouinard, Albert Ellingwood, and others who you may or may not know. These individuals pushed the limits of what is possible in the mountains and defined the future of mountaineering and exploration. Plus, their adventures help to shaped our country – Manifest destiny, environmental movements, national parks, and so much more.
Continental Divide isn’t necessarily a page turner and some readers may find it overly detailed, but it will most certainly inspire any avid reader to get outside and climb a mountain. Both armchair adventurers and true mountaineers will enjoy this one.
“We attach our dreams to mountains. Mountains, we hope, will bring us strength, purpose, unity, salvation. We go to the mountains on a quest that, at various times and places, has been national, spiritual, personal, or some combination of all three.”
If the above quote rings true with you, pick up a copy of Continental Divide: A History Of American Mountaineering by Maurice Isserman. This book is written for mountain enthusiasts like you.