I spent more than two years researching, thinking, planning, analyzing, agonizing, toiling, writing, editing, rewriting, revising, refining and proofing a book about the most beautiful mountain in the world, Cerro Torre. This site, along with my book’s Facebook page, will serve as a place for me to post book-related material. My book is entitled The Tower: A Chronicle of Climbing and Controversy on Cerro Torre.

For more information:cordes - CT jan2007 (LR) About My BookOrdering InfoTable of Contents.

Dates and locations of book presentations: Book Tour.

Below, I’ll try to keep a running list of links to my book-related posts.

Thanks for reading.

November 20, 2014



My Cerro Torre Book (and marg recipe). Nov 26, 2014. Intro book post.

Chapter One: Lost Time. Excerpt.

Old Patagonia: A Photo Tells a Story.

New Patagonia: The Winds of Change.

Closer to Truth. New evidence about what really happened.

7 thoughts on “Book

  1. I loved this book! What a fantastic and gripping account of the history behind this sought-after peak. I’d like to share the book with my partner, but he has no time to read and is looking for an audiobook edition (mp3 or CD). Are there plans for an audiobook version of “The Tower?”

    • Thanks tons, really nice to hear, glad you liked it! Ahhh, no plans for an audiobook at this point, at least as far as I know (I suppose I should know, so I guess it’s safe to say no plans). It’d be cool, I dig audio, but realities like time and effort preclude my doing so anytime soon. And with my audio heroes Jonny Cash and Lemmy Kilmister now gone, not sure who could do it. I talked about the book a fair bit on an Enormocast episode, but, unfortunately, no audio book. Anyway, many thanks.

  2. Thanks very much for responding to my inquiry. I can definitely understand the extensive time and effort involved in making an audio version! My partner and I could always read the book aloud to each other on our mountaineering road trips, I enjoyed the book so much it’s worth going through it again. Thanks for the link your Enormocast episode on the book, looking forward to checking that out. Again, awesome book, thank you for all your work in getting it out there!

  3. I guess I saw a review in the journal of the Swiss Alpine Club and ordered a copy of your book from Amazon. It is really excellent and IMO worth the 2 years of research. I started mountaineering (your definition) at 44 and could no more climb CT than fly, but I have carried 22 kg of camping and photo gear to Laguna Torre and found the whole area marvellous. The idea that one would turn this mountain into a Via Ferrata is beyind belief. Especially for an accomplished alpinist to do so. Neither can I understand the row over removing the bolts. I have now climbed 2/3 of the 4000ers in the alps, but what would have been the fun if they had all been fitted with handrails? I hope someone chops the remaing 280 bolts!

    I also hope you think of a new mountaineering story to write about, but this one will be a hard act to follow.

    Many thanks. David Myers.

    • Thank you, David! Likewise, it’s mighty bizarre to me, but in many ways (as I tried to get at in the book) I think the outrage over the bolt removal had much to do with many things beyond the bolts. Terrific you got to spend some time in the area, it is truly glorious.

      Indeed I wrote a bit more after this book, diving into co-writing Tommy Caldwell’s memoir (he’s a dear friend and neighbor), “The Push.” That book has been out for a year or so. Since then, I’ve only written some articles, but perhaps motivation for longer projects will return. It’s nice to have time to go climbing again! Anyway, thank you for the kind words.

  4. Kelly, I’ve been a fan of your writing for a long time. Listening to the audio version which is awesome. Thanks for putting it out there–I looked on venmo to see if you were there so I could pay you for the experience of the audio book but didn’t see you on there.

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