RIP Edwin Drummond


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Big Wall climber
Sheffield, England
Topic Author's Original Post - Apr 30, 2019 - 05:40am PT
He’s Flown

We are saddened to tell the climbing community far and wise that our Dad, Edwin Drummond, died on Tuesday 23rd April.

We each climbed with him at some point in our lives, but unfortunately never all together, that will have to happen in another realm.

Like the late sun on an easy slab, it warms us to know that some of his life’s greatest happinesses and achievements came while he was climbing.

His spirit is out there with you.

With love and peace: Haworth, Fiume and Areanna.

*We welcome any recollections, stories or photos you may have of him. Share them here or send privately to

Trad climber
Ouray, Colorado
Apr 30, 2019 - 06:16am PT
My condolences...he was quite a man.
Mark Rodell

Trad climber
Apr 30, 2019 - 06:19am PT
I never met him but I sure enjoyed his writings. Happy trails Ed.

Sport climber
Sands Motel , Las Vegas
Apr 30, 2019 - 06:31am PT
Didn’t know your dad but remember watching him rappel out of a cloud bank on el cap , soaking wet , looking like a Norse god...condolences....
Tom Patterson

Trad climber
Apr 30, 2019 - 06:45am PT
My condolences to you and your family. What a name he has in the climbing world and beyond. And what a lovely tribute to him on your part.

Trad climber
The state of confusion
Apr 30, 2019 - 06:56am PT
Sincere condolences to Edwin's family and friends.

Vision man...ya gotta have vision...
Apr 30, 2019 - 06:56am PT
Dreaming of white horses...

RIP to a fine writer.

Apr 30, 2019 - 07:05am PT
Remember him up there soloing the NA wall and got nailed in a bad winter storm in an exposed spot outside of the Cyclops Eye.

We encountered a lot of Ice on the approach slabs from the LZ.

Sar pulled him to the top.

How was it down there Ed?

"Ummmmm .... a little too freezing cold damp for me"

LOL ... I would have been long dead frozen solid.

Good man ..... condolences .....
ron gomez

Trad climber
Apr 30, 2019 - 07:22am PT
RIP, condolences to his family and friends.

Social climber
Mountain View/Boulder
Apr 30, 2019 - 07:52am PT
"Mirror, Mirror" is a really fine piece of climbing literature. If you can find a copy of Ascent 1973 give it a read.
Brian in SLC

Social climber
Salt Lake City, UT
Apr 30, 2019 - 07:54am PT
Ditto that^^^.

RIP. Some of the better musings about our sport out there...

Delhi Dog

Good Question...
Apr 30, 2019 - 08:07am PT

I sure enjoyed his writings as well.
Quite the character it seems.

Trad climber
Santa Cruz, CA
Apr 30, 2019 - 08:12am PT
In the Valley with Ed, circa 1974. Not dirty or bloodied so this obviously was pre-climb. We delighted in each others company for 4 years.
He was complicated, controversial, but always, always courageous.

Go forth, Ed, and show the angels how it's done.
Steve Grossman

Trad climber
Seattle, WA
Apr 30, 2019 - 08:24am PT
Very sad to hear about your father's passing but I am relieved to hear that he is not suffering now.
Ed is probably my favorite mountaineering writer and a true master of the epic aspect of climbing.
I only met him once when I recorded a slide show done with Royal Robbins about their respective adventures on the North America Wall. Ed brought a tall ladder on stage and did a wonderful performance piece about his harrowing attempt to solo the NA that ended in rescue. He was in the early stages of being ill and talked candidly about the trajectory that he expected his life to take at that point.
After the presentation was finished, I engaged him in conversation and told him frankly that he was the "measure of a man" in my estimation at that point being such a curious amalgamation of hardman, artist and poet. He thanked me for the unusual compliment as he tried to wrap his mind around what I meant and we parted company to get on with our lives.
Truly a unique and talented human being as well as an indelible character and undoubtedly a considerable challenge as a parent. My sincerest condolences to your family and Ed's community of friends and admirers of which I am one. Our world is a duller place without such a splendid rascal in its midst. Please let us know if there is going to be a memorial gathering as I would be honored to contribute to it.
If you would like a taste of Ed's unique writing style take a look here.

Mountain climber
The Other Monrovia- CA
Apr 30, 2019 - 08:35am PT
A man of inestimable accomplishments of which he wrote inestimably.
Russ Walling

Social climber
from Poofters Froth, Wyoming
Apr 30, 2019 - 08:40am PT
Condolences to Eds family and friends. I enjoyed the few interactions I had with him back in Yosemite, especially around the time of his attempt on the North America Wall. His writing was also top shelf. Great chap. RIP.
Gnome Ofthe Diabase

Out Of Bed
Apr 30, 2019 - 11:43am PT

A Climber

From no mold at all
A large part of what was inspiring came from his writing.

Through his vision & understanding: from his words, that grasp you, everyone can always remember.
Modesto Mutant

Trad climber
Santa Cruz, CA
Apr 30, 2019 - 12:42pm PT
Edwin was a larger than life figure. I remember him coming into Royal's shop in Modesto with a big topo book of all the buildering routes of San Francisco. He always filled the room with his presence. A wonderful gentleman.
Don Lauria

Trad climber
Bishop, CA
Apr 30, 2019 - 12:50pm PT
My memories of Ed:

It was 1968,

Royal was hanging out with a British climber – Ed Ward-Drummond. It seems Drummond had arrived from Britain with intention of doing the NA Wall and not being able to find anyone to climb it with, he was going to approach us. Royal knew this and two days before our intended start, he asked if we would like to do Bridal Veil East with him and Drummond (or Ward, he kept switching his name around). We did the climb and Ward never stopped pleading with us to let him go with us on the NA. We were adamant – we are a two-man team - we’ve been planning this for a year – another climber would slow us up and we don’t need anyone else. The answer is “No!”

Ed's personality could be off-putting as evidenced by others on Supetopo:

“Edwind Drummond is a splendid writer and his book ”A Dream of White Horses” (London 1987) is one of my favorites. 40-45 short stories and poems. He’s not always a likeable guy and has a somewhat inflated ego - to be noticed in his account of a badly planned Makalu expediton (A Grace Period) and from his rescue from NA Wall (and stalking of R.R.)” - Michael Hjorth

“He was complicated, controversial, but always, always courageous.
Go forth, Ed, and show the angels how it's done.” - GraceD

One thing we all agreed on, he could damn well write!

Just livin' the dream
Apr 30, 2019 - 12:53pm PT
May Ed's entire lineage find peace in knowing that he
enriched many, many lives.

Rest in peace, dear philosopher.

Couldn't have said it better myself.
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