Book Review: Select Alpine Climbs To Montana By Ron Brunckhorst
When it comes to climbing in Montana, beta is pretty scarce. With mountains in nearly every direction, there’s obviously plenty of places to explore. There haven’t been too many comprehensive guide books written about Montana, which isn’t a bad thing. But it’s still nice to have a starting point.
One book that has changed my perspective on climbing in Montana is Select Alpine Climbs To Montana by Ron Brunckhorst. This book is the perfect source to inspire your next Montana mountain adventure. Select Alpine Climbs highlights nearly 300 alpine routes of all abilities in 14 mountain ranges, including:
- Bitterroot Range
- Anaconda Pintler Range
- Pioneer Mountains
- Tobacco Root Mountains
- Madison Range
- Gallatin Range
- Bridger Range
- Crazy Mountains
- Absaroka Mountains
- Beartooth Mountains
- Glacier National Park
- Cabinet Mountains
- Mission Range
- Swan Range
This book will keep your imagination and your climbing going for years to come. Brunckhorst covers walk-ups, alpine routes, rock climbs, and ice climbs. The synopsis of each route is quick and to the point – leaving the description beautifully vague and often somewhat open to interpretation.
Brunckhorst doesn’t dive into flouncy descriptions or beautiful photos. There are simple hand drawn maps and black and white images that are sometimes hard to make out. The route descriptions aren’t super detailed, but are usually broken down into pitches so you have a basic understanding of the route.
From Glacier Peak to the June Couloir to the NorthEast Slabs, this book has you covered. Most of the routes are 5.8 and up. Some are single remote routes and other sections dive into complex cirques. The book features huge sections on the Absaroka, Beartooths, and GNP. Other ranges only have a few routes.
I have barely scratched the surface of this book. I like how things are named though. I’m a big supporter of everyone being roughly on the same page with where they are and what they did. There are several climbing routes (couloirs) in this book, that I now want to ski too!
Select Alpine Climbs To Montana is a must have book for any climber in this area. It’s the perfect book to amp up your excitement for new routes, road trips, and mountaineering adventures. It’s Montana, there’s so much to do and so little time.
Due to the long approaches and short climbing season, there will never be too many people swarming over these routes (hopefully). If you’re keen to get after it, pick up a copy of Select Alpine Climbs and start ticking off climbs. This book will keep you mountaineering for a long time without ever repeating a route.