Alpinist Magazine Issue 85 | Spring 2024

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Cover: Jackson Marvell climbs the north-facing headwall of Jannu (7710m) last October during the first ascent of Roundtrip Ticket (AI5+ M7, 2700m). [Photo] Matt Cornell


Via Sedna
Against the odds, a team of eight women who speak different languages coalesced to overcome months of stormy seas on a fifteen-meter sailboat and climb a new route on Northern Sun Spire in Greenland—with only three days of clear weather for the ascent and descent. Caro North tells the story of how her dream came true.
Observations of Change
As an artist, Claire Giordano documents a changing landscape on Mt. Baker through swaths of color. As a human, her trips to the receding ice are a solemn chance to reflect on the overwhelming impacts of climate change on mountain landscapes and the communities that depend on them. In this art essay, she explores the “odd dichotomy” of her emotions.
Playing His Own Game
Edmund February found success in both the mountains and academia despite being a climber of color during South Africa’s apartheid. Herein, Brandon Blackburn interviews February about how he overcame racist norms to pursue his passions, always playing his own game.
Reflections in the Ice
Nikki Smith has been documenting Utah ice with photography and guidebooks for more than a quarter of a century. But a year ago, after grieving the losses of too many friends, she began to question her direction and struggled to do something she used to love. Then she realized that the unique landscapes and ice formations hold some of her most cherished memories.




Sharp End
Derek Franz encounters a drone on a desert tower.
Our readers write.
Escape Route
Abbey Collins and Nathan Conroy share book and film recommendations. Berne Broudy interviews Nima Doma Sherpa of the Two Widows Everest Project. Plus, how an early Denali guide kept his feet warm.
On Belay
Alan Rousseau shares the story of the first alpine- style ascent of Jannu’s north face, by a new route, with Jackson Marvell and Matt Cornell.
Tool User
John Middendorf explains the significance of silkworms in rope design.
The Climbing Life
Leath Tonino eschews timepieces for an alpine start. Corey Hockett wonders what could’ve been. Erin Phillips finds peace in slowing down. And Talley V. Kayser walks among wildfires.
Full Value
Christian Kiefer imagines an encounter between enemy soldiers in the Dolomites during World War I.
Local Hero
Tom Dauer relates how Iranian climber Nasim Eshqi came to embrace the power of pink and become a voice for women’s rights while living in exile from her home country.
Off Belay
Word puzzles by Dakota Walz

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