In the summer of 1967, an Arctic hurricane trapped seven veteran climbers, members of Joe Wilcox’s twelve-man expedition, at 20,000 feet on Alaska’s Mount McKinley. Ten days passed while the storm raged. Despite the availability of massive resources, no rescue was mounted, and all seven men died. The tragedy was one of the most controversial, bitterly contested, and mysterious tragedies in all of mountaineering history.
No bodies were ever recovered. No cameras, diaries, or films shed light on the climbers’ final agonizing days. Yet agenda-driven critics and officials fearing lawsuits pronounced self-serving verdicts. Further obscuring the truth, two prominent expedition members offered conflicting versions of the catastrophe.
Through interviews with those involved, unpublished correspondence and diaries, and sensitive government documents, James M. Tabor uncovers an array of new information: a feud between the expedition leader, Joe Wilcox; a stillborn rescue operation thwarted by the Park Service bureaucracy; and the heroic efforts made by other civilian climbers. To interpret the details, he consults experts in disciplines as diverse as forensics, meteorology, and psychology.
In the end, Tabor has pieced together for the first time the complete, untold story of this expedition whose victims and survivors both remain, in many ways, forever on the mountain.
From the Compact Disc edition.
About James Tabor
James M. Tabor is the bestselling author of The Deep Zone, Blind Descent, and Forever on the Mountain and a winner of the O. Henry Award for short fiction. A former Washington, D.C., police officer and a lifelong adventure enthusiast, Tabor has written for Time, The Wall Street Journal, The Washington Post, and Outside magazine, where he was a contributing editor. He wrote and hosted the PBS series The Great Outdoors and was co-creator and executive producer of the History Channel’s Journey to the Center of the World. He lives in Vermont, where he is at work on his next novel.
About Scott Brick
Scott Brick, an acclaimed voice artist, screenwriter, and actor, has performed on film, television and radio. His stage appearances throughout the U.S. include Cyrano, Hamlet and MacBeth. In the audio industry, Scott has won over twenty Earphone Awards, as well as the 2003 Audie Award in the Best Science Fiction category for Dune: The Butlerian Jihad. After recording nearly 250 books in five years, AudioFile Magazine named Scott “one of the fastest-rising stars in the audiobook galaxy” and proclaimed him one of their Golden Voices. Brick’s range is unparalleled as he reads thrillers to narrative non-fiction, from biographies to science fiction with aplomb.