Guide to Mountaineering and Mountain Climbing Resources

Mountaineering or alpinism involves either climbing mountains with specialized equipment such as crampons and rope or braving rocky and treacherous slopes on foot. While risky and often extremely dangerous, the lure of a challenge, the struggle to persevere and the ultimate reward compel people from all over the world to engage in this sport that demands competence, skill and good judgment for success. Below, you’ll discover 40 mountaineering and mountain climbing resources that will teach you how to choose the best gear for your quest, entertain you with exhilarating stories and photos of others who participate in this sport, inform you about the latest news and events and much more.


General Mountain Climbing and Mountaineering Resources

Discover mountain-climbing stories, a trip safety and cell coverage app, top mountain-climbing destinations and more in this variety of general resources.

Glossary of Rock, Ice and Mountain Climbing Terms – An alphabetized glossary of terms relating to rock, ice and mountain climbing, which even includes some video links.

Mountaineering Equipment Checklist – Use this checklist to ensure you are completely prepared for everything you might encounter on mountaineering day trip.

Summit Post – Check out this “collaborative content community” that focuses on climbing, mountaineering and other outdoor pursuits. Members can post photos, reports, events, articles and more.

NPR: Stories About Mountain Climbing – From National Public Radio comes various stories about mountain climbing complete with stunning photos.

Cairn – No more worries about keeping your loved ones up to date on your status while you’re enjoying remote outdoor locations. Find out about everything Cairn has to offer by following the link.

National Weather Service – Keeping updated on weather conditions is essential to a climber’s safety. Use this link to NWS to find out about current weather across the nation.

Avalanche Education Center – Learn about snow avalanches in general and how to avoid or reduce the risk from avalanches.

Top 10 Climbs – National Geographic details what it considers the world’s top 10 climbs – from Mexico to Mongolia.

Top Mountain Climbing Destinations in the U.S. –  No matter what ability level you have as a mountain climber, check out these five top mountain climbing destinations to help you plan your next trip.

How to Get Ready for a High Altitude Mountain Climb – Find out what’s important when preparing for a high-altitude mountain climb from an experienced climber.

Altitude-Related Disorders – As unpleasant as it is to consider your body’s reactions to a high-altitude climb, it’s much more unpleasant to experience them – some can even be fatal. Find out signs and symptoms to watch for when climbing.


Mountain Climber and Mountaineering Resources for Beginners

Nothing is a substitute for professional hands-on training for beginning mountain climbers. However, the following resources offer plenty of basic, but worthwhile, information about techniques, choosing gear, packing and more.

Mountain Climbing School Manual – This introductory guide presents the basic techniques for mountain climbing and also includes a glossary.

Alpinism 101 – An Introduction – Physical training, gear and clothing, mountaineering skills and more are included in this helpful, informative article.

How to Get Started Mountaineering – This beginner’s guide directs learners to master the basic fundamentals of mountaineering first: backpacking, climbing and camping.

How to Choose a Mountaineering and Alpine Climbing Backpack – It took a research team seven months to compile the recommendations for these top-rated alpine packs. What better place to start the search for your first – or next – pack?

Learn This: Pack Smarter – Chris Wright, an AMGA-certified rock and alpine guide, offers his advice regarding how to pack a backpack before climbing.

Mountain Preparedness: What Goes in a Guide’s Pack? – Find out from Seth Hobby, professional climbing instructor and guide, the “what” and “why” of essentials needed in an alpinist’s pack.

Mountains for Mortals – This article details seven of the best summits for beginners to consider as their climbing destinations.

Best Mountaineering Expeditions for Beginners  – Safe and achievable are two descriptors that should apply to any and all beginning mountaineering expeditions. Find out where to find these type of experiences.


Famous Mountaineers

While there are certainly many more climbers that could make this list, these are a few that have achieved legendary status.

George Mallory (1886-1924) – In his 1924 attempt to reach the summit of Mt. Everest, Mallory met with death. His body wasn’t recovered for approximately 75 years.

Tenzing Norgay (1914-1986) – Read about one of the first people – a Nepalese climber – to reach the summit of Mt. Everest in 1953.

Edmund Hillary (1919-2008) – Find out about life and accomplishments of this New Zealander explorer and mountaineer.

Lino Lacedelli (1925-2009) – Read about the Italian mountaineer who was one of the first to successfully conquer K2, which is the second highest peak in the world after Everest.

Reinhold Messner (1944 –    ) – Messner is considered one of the greatest mountain climbers of all time. Find out why.


Mountain Climbing and Mountaineering Organizations

If mountain climbing is one of your passions, check out these organizations that actively strive to preserve and improve the sport.

Access Fund  – A national, non-profit organization with a dual mission of conserving climbing environments while keeping them open to the public

American Alpine Club  – Find climbing information, knowledge and resources from authorities and leaders in the field.

American Mountain Guide’s Association – The AMGA offers leading resources – training, credentials and more – for U.S. professional mountain guides and climbing instructors.

American Safe Climbing Association  – The ASCA mission is rooted in replacing deteriorating anchors in the U.S. and distributing climbing safety education.

Professional Climbing Guides Institute – PCGI creates and oversees training, assessment and certification standards for both professional and soon-to-be rock climbing guides.

International Climbing and Mountaineering Federation – Via promoting safe mountain practices, environmental protection and more, the UIAA endeavors to keep the sport of mountaineering and climbing alive and thriving.

Professional Climbing Instructors Association – Joining the PCIA is a perfect choice for new and experienced climbing instructors who focus on teaching basic skills.


Mountain Climbing Blogs

This collection of mountain climbing blogs can keep you up-to-date on the latest news and views in the sport of mountain climbing as well as information about gear and climbing locations.

Alpinist – Find news, features, reviews, essays and more focused on the sport of mountain climbing.

UK Climbing – This British site offers news, articles, photos, gear review, forums and other information related to everything from bouldering to mountain climbing.

Climbing – Discover the different skills that mountain climbers use, gear reviews, news, places to climb, interviews with climbers and much more.

Explorers Web – Whether you’re longing for your next great climb or you just like to live vicariously via the adventures of a mountain climber, check out this site for the latest news of exciting expeditions.

Alpine Exposures by Jonathan Griffith – When you’re in the mood for some stunning mountain sports photography, look no further than the work of Jonathan Griffith who is an alpinist and leader in this niche of the photography industry.


Mountain Climbing Podcasts

While you’re biding your time until your next climbing adventure, check out these entertaining and informative mountain climbing podcasts.

MtnMeister – Join Ben Schenck and the Meisters for twice weekly, 30-minute episodes that probe the minds of leading outdoors athletes and serve as an inspiration for listeners.

West of Center – Jason Albert created this podcast to tell long-form stories about outdoor adventures and environmental concerns.

The Enormocast  – Chris Kalous, an experienced climber, offers listeners discussion, interviews and his own valuable perspective in each episode.

Mountain – Hosted by Christopher Sleight, this podcast uses interviews, sound effects and music to relay engaging stories about adventures in wild places.