An Inspirational Story of Friendship and Survival
Ballantine Books, Paperback, 9780345523204, 272pp.
Publication Date: January 1, 2013
In June 1992, best friends Jim Davidson and Mike Price stood atop Washington's Mount Rainier, celebrating what they hoped would be the first of many milestones in their lives as passionate mountaineers. Then their triumph turned tragic when a cave-in plunged them deep inside a glacial crevasse the pitch-black, ice-walled hell of every climber's nightmares.
An avid adventurer since youth, Davidson was a seasoned climber at the time of the Rainier ascent. But the harrowing free fall left him challenged by nature's grandeur at its most unforgiving. Trapped on a narrow frozen shelf, deep below daylight, he desperately battled crumbling ice, snow that threatened to bury him alive, and crippling fear of the inescapable chasm below all the while struggling to save his fatally injured friend. Finally, alone, with little equipment and rapidly dwindling hope, he confronted a fateful choice: the certainty of a slow, lonely death or the near impossibility of an agonizing climb for life. A story of heart-stopping adventure, heartfelt friendship, fleeting mortality, and implacable nature, The Ledge chronicles the elation and grief, dizzying heights and punishing depths, of a journey to hard-won wisdom.
Plunges readers into a dark, icy chasm from which escape seems impossible. Then it reveals the strength it takes to look up, and to start climbing. Jim Sheeler, winner of the Pulitzer Prize and author of the National Book Award finalist Final Salute
How Davidson] rescued himself is the core of The Ledge, and its most gripping part. The physical effort and will involved are astonishing. The Plain Dealer
A moving portrait of friendship and loss. The Wall Street Journal
Advance praise for The Ledge
“Through spare, vivid, and honest storytelling, The Ledge plunges readers into a dark, icy chasm from which escape seems impossible. Then it reveals the strength it takes to look up, and to start climbing.”—Jim Sheeler, winner of the Pulitzer Prize and author of the National Book Award finalist Final Salute
“Few can imagine the terror of falling eighty feet into a bottomless abyss or the horror of losing a climbing partner in the process; even fewer could survive. Jim Davidson not only survives, he lives to tell the tale and to honor his fallen friend.”—Jennifer Jordan, author The Last Man on the Mountain and Savage Summit
“A deeply personal account of friendship, adventure, and epic tragedy, of struggling for life against the toughest of mountaineering odds imaginable.”—Mike Gauthier, author of Mount Rainier: A Climbing Guide