Sunday, April 5, 2009


I've spent way too much time working at the hospital lately. I've been away from the Solar Homestead 16 of the last 18 days. Too much. My days are filled with work. When that is done I usually go to the library, then a walk. I grab a bite to eat (sometimes in a restaurant, sometimes something warmed up in my room). Then I quietly sneak into my office and plunk away at the computer for a while.

Then it is back to my Monastic Dorm. I read. Alot.

This week I read Jack Turner's Teewinot: a year in the Teton range. This is the first book I've read by this Philosopher and pioneer of rock climbing. Jack Turner has had a life many of us dream of. Half academic. Half adventurer. This book is based on his adventuring.

It is a fun read. He borrows the idea from Ed Abbey's Desert Solitaire of condensing some thirty years of Teton living into a mythic year in the Tetons. It seems that nearly all the chapters begin with a description of 1. how cold it is and 2. what type of snow is falling.

We need more books like this though. Some gems stand out. His discussion of creating a culture whereby we let large predators live is very worth reading (and for someone to build on his ideas). By large predators, he means animals that can eat humans. Here in North America that is reduced to mountain lions and grizzlies.

Jack Turner was first and foremost a rock climber. His chapter about all the rock climbers he has known (guides with the company he works for) who have died is not put downable. As are the descriptions of how they died. He does this with tact and reverence.

His style is beautiful and simple. His descriptions are elegant and poignant. This is a good read. Worth picking up. I look forward to exploring more of his work.

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