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4.0 out of 5 stars THE CLIMB UP TO HELL... MAKES FOR HEAVENLY READING.
This book chronicles the dramatic 1957 rescue of an Italian, amateur mountain climber from the north face of the Eiger. It is written in somewhat of a potboiler style which makes it a real easy reading, page turner.
It is filled with facts and names from mountaineering history which will delight climbing enthusiasts. The famous Chamonix guide and one of the four...
Published on Aug. 17 2000 by Lawyeraau

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1.0 out of 5 stars Beware of this! Powerfully misleading literature.
You have probably heard about the North Wall of the Eiger. You are probably aware of the fact that Heinrich Harrer was in the first team to climb it in 1937 (yes, the writer of "Seven years in Tibet" and Brad Pitt's character in the movie), and that his book "The White Spider" is among the great mountain literature classics. You also might know that "The Eiger Sanction"...
Published on June 8 2000 by Jazzmountain


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4.0 out of 5 stars THE CLIMB UP TO HELL... MAKES FOR HEAVENLY READING., Aug. 17 2000
By 
Lawyeraau (Balmoral Castle) - See all my reviews
(TOP 100 REVIEWER)   
This review is from: The Climb Up to Hell (Paperback)
This book chronicles the dramatic 1957 rescue of an Italian, amateur mountain climber from the north face of the Eiger. It is written in somewhat of a potboiler style which makes it a real easy reading, page turner.
It is filled with facts and names from mountaineering history which will delight climbing enthusiasts. The famous Chamonix guide and one of the four climbers who figured prominently in the successful, yet tragic 1950 French conquest of Annapurna, Lionel Terray, figures prominently in the rescue portion of this narrative.
The account focuses on a somewhat inept, amateur mountaineer, Claudio Corti, from the Lecco region of Italy. Having lost a number of his roping partners to the grim reaper on prior ascents with him on various mountains, he naturally encountered some difficulty in finding one to accompany him on an expedition to climb the nearly vertical, north face of the Eiger. He finally inveigled Stefano Lhongi, a very inexperienced climber, to accompany him and attempt one of the most perilous ascents in the world.
This two man rope team was simply not prepared to make this ascent properly. Along their way up the north face of Eiger, they encounter two very experienced, German climbers also making the ascent of the Eiger's north face. What happens during their encounter, when disaster strikes, makes for some riveting reading.
While Claudio Corti comes across as a thoroughly despicable buffoon, one's heart cannot help but break for the hapless Stefano Longhi and the poignancy of his tragic end on the brink of rescue. The rescue itself is an amazing account of courage, bravado, and confusion, as a multitude of mountaineers converge upon Eiger in order to try and save the four mountaineers who had not returned.
While the rescue efforts account for the fate of the two Italians, the fate of the two German climbers was not ascertained until years later. This made for a mystery that for years caused members of the climbing community and journalists all over the world to heap opprobrium upon Corti, who proved himself to be simply an utter idiot. I leave if for readers of this book to discover for themselves what became of them.
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1.0 out of 5 stars Beware of this! Powerfully misleading literature., June 8 2000
This review is from: The Climb Up to Hell (Paperback)
You have probably heard about the North Wall of the Eiger. You are probably aware of the fact that Heinrich Harrer was in the first team to climb it in 1937 (yes, the writer of "Seven years in Tibet" and Brad Pitt's character in the movie), and that his book "The White Spider" is among the great mountain literature classics. You also might know that "The Eiger Sanction" movie (about the book by Trevanian, featuring Clint Eastwood) was filmed there on the North Wall. For us mountain lovers, the Eiger is among our lifelong dreads and dreams at the same time. The stories triggered sobering reflections about life and death and climbing. But to use one of our legitimate sources of thought and growth as a theme for a "page-turner" massacre pamphlet is just unbearable. Anyway, being optimistic, could it be that he is trying to convey some philosophical message about the mountain or about mountaineering? Perhaps a sobering one? Could it be by any chance related to his favorite book themes? Please click on the author's name and take a short while to review his titles (I have selected some for you, below), and please do not buy this book.
"Misbegotten Son: A Serial Killer and His Victims" "Cold Kill : The True Story of a Murderous Love" "Have You Seen My Son?" "The Man With the Candy; The Story of the Houston Mass Murders" "Predator: Rape, Madness, and Injustice in Seattle" "Son: A Psychopath and His Victims" "Charmer : The True Story of a Ladies' Man and His Victims" "Hastened to the Grave : The Gypsy Murder Investigation"
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2.0 out of 5 stars This one was boring, July 13 1999
By A Customer
This review is from: The Climb Up to Hell (Paperback)
I noticed that the other reviews were 5 stars on this one when I looked. I just could not give this one more than two. It was too long in tooth, too long in words, and hardly gripping. It spent too much time talking, and too little time describing action. It seemed to be more about the rescue clubs than about the rescue iitself. I did not find it to be particularily interesting in an fashion. I was disappointed when placed again such books as into thin air, and the other side of everest. These are my opinions, but I could not even finish the book. It seemed likeone of those adventure books that had been translated, and something was lost in the translation.
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2.0 out of 5 stars The Read Up Through Hell, Sept. 18 2000
This review is from: The Climb Up to Hell (Paperback)
A great story, poorly told. I am an avid outdoorsman and reader; the subject matter of this book is very interesting. Unfortunately, Mr. Olsen wrote this book in a time when it seemed to be fasionable to dazzle one's audience with one's vocabulary. I have not read any of Mr. Olsen's other books, but hopefully he has matured to a less snobbish style in his later works. If you are interested in mountaineering history and don't mind being confronted with an author's "look how smart I am" delivery, read this book. Otherwise, you too may be put off as I was.
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5.0 out of 5 stars A real page-turner, Dec 28 2000
By A Customer
This review is from: The Climb Up to Hell (Paperback)
A friend of mine is a big fan of Jack Olsen, and suggested that I read this book first as I'm interested in climbing. Since reading it, I can't wait to read his other books. Its unfair to dismiss this book simply because Olson is a true-crime writer - why does this genre get such a bad wrap? Not only is it an exciting account of the events, but you begin to feel for all the people involved. I was so interested in the lives of the rescued/rescuers that I did a search on them right after reading the book and learned as much about them as I could. I highly reccomend this book.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Outstanding Narrative, March 31 1999
By A Customer
This review is from: The Climb Up to Hell (Paperback)
I first read this book when it was originally published in the early 60's, and have re-read it many times since. Of the many true-account mountaineering books I have read, this one is by far the best. Jack Olsen has the ability to put the reader right into the story. Read this book, and you will know what it feels like to be trapped on the north wall of the Eiger with little hope for survival.
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4.0 out of 5 stars True-Crime Whodunnit on a Mountain, Oct. 12 2001
By 
elcajonfarms (Lafayette, California United States) - See all my reviews
This review is from: The Climb Up to Hell (Paperback)
This is a fast-moving account of a true and avoidable mountaineering accident and the ensuing rescue efforts. The author holds back the real story about the apparent culprit (assuming there is one) until the very end. Fans of classic mountaineering literature written by technically experienced mountaineers will not find everything they're looking for here. Those looking for a good read will.
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5.0 out of 5 stars This is a real page-turner..., June 29 1999
By A Customer
This review is from: The Climb Up to Hell (Paperback)
Having recently visited the Bernese Alps, I found this account of the dramatic 1957 rescue mission especially gripping. I HIGHLY RECOMMEND this book to just about anyone, particularly those with an interest in mountain climbing or Switzerland.
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The Climb Up to Hell
The Climb Up to Hell by Jack Olsen (Paperback - Oct. 15 1998)
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