About this item

A celebrated mountaineer and author searches for meaning in great adventures and explorations, past and present.

David Roberts, "veteran mountain climber and chronicler of adventures" (Washington Post) , has spent his career documenting voyages to the most extreme landscapes on earth. In Limits of the Known, he reflects on humanity's -- and his own -- relationship to extreme risk. Part memoir and part history, this book tries to make sense of why so many have committed their lives to the desperate pursuit of adventure.

In the wake of his diagnosis with throat cancer, Roberts seeks answers with sharp new urgency. He explores his own lifelong commitment to adventuring, as well as the cultural contributions of explorers throughout history: What specific forms of courage and commitment did it take for Fridtjof Nansen to survive an eighteen-month journey from a record "farthest north" with no supplies and a single rifle during his polar expedition of 1893-96? What compelled Eric Shipton to return, five times, to the ridges of Mt. Everest, plotting the mountain's most treacherous territory years before Hillary and Tenzing's famous ascent? What drove Bill Stone to dive 3,000 feet underground into North America's deepest cave?

What motivates the explorers we most admire, who are willing to embark on perilous journeys and push the limits of the human body? And what is the future of adventure in a world we have mapped and trodden from end to end?

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About the Author

David Roberts

David Roberts (born 1943) is a climber, mountaineer, and author of books and articles about climbing. He is particularly noted for his books The Mountain of My Fear and Deborah: A Wilderness Narrative, chronicling major ascents in Alaska in the 1960s, which had a major impact on the form of mountaineering literature. In thirteen seasons spent in the Alaskan wilderness, Roberts is well known for many first ascents, including the Wickersham Wall on Mount McKinley, the West rib of Mount Huntington, climbing in the Western Brooks Range and the Kichatna Spires, and on the East Face of Mount Dickey.

Roberts is the son of Walter Orr Roberts and mentor to Jon Krakauer.

David Roberts attended Harvard University, where he received a mathematics degree in 1965. He was a member of and former president of the Harvard Mountaineering Club. He also received a Ph.D. in English from the University of Denver in 1970.

From 1970 to 1979 Roberts was a professor of literature at Hampshire College, in Amherst, Massachusetts, as well as designing the college's Outdoors Program.
Bio from Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.



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