Calculated Risk

Calculated Risk

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Douglas Haston 

Second edition, paperback 

Calculated Risk is a fictional portrayal of the world of mountaineering, of climbing the most demanding routes at a time when climbing was still emerging from its primitive inter-war and post war austerities and such routes were a stark struggle against the elements. The realities and tensions of big-time climbing, firmly focused on the Alps and the Himalaya, are revealed with greater clarity through the medium of fiction.

Dougal Haston was among Britain’s leading mountaineers. A controversial figure, he began climbing in Scotland, putting up numerous new routes before moving on to bigger mountains and ascents of Annapurna, Everest and Denali. He was part of the team which, in 1966, made a directtissima ascent of the North Face of the Eiger. In 1967, Haston became Director of the International School of Mountaineering at Leysin in Switzerland. He wrote Calculated Risk in 1977, shortly before his death while skiing above Leysin – an accident strangely foretold in the book.