Tribute to Gaston Rebuffat

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Erik

Ice climber
Topic Author's Original Post - Nov 14, 2007 - 03:59pm PT




Glace, Neige, et Roc has to be one of my favorite mountaineering books of all time. I wish I could post some of its superb photos here.


From the American Alpine Journal:

GASTON RfiBUFFAT
1921-1985
In Memoriam
GASTON RhBUFFAT
1921-1985
Gaston Rebuffat, longtime Honorary Member of the American Alpine Club
and Officer of the French Legion of Honor, died of cancer, in Paris, on May 3 1,
1985, at the age of 64.
His climbing career spanned half a century and during his lifetime in-
fluenced two generations of mountaineers in France and around the world. From
the dawn of mountaineering to the present day, there have been few alpinists to
match Rebuffat’s total contribution as a climber. guide, teacher, author, moun-
taineering historian, film-maker and photographer, and lecturer. Through these
varied activities over four decades, he created a new world public for mountain-
eering. Non-climbers, as well as climbers, responded strongly to the virile sim-
plicity of his personal precepts: the companionship of the rope; the joy and
mystery of the dialogue between climber and mountain; his preference for
difficulty over risk; and valuing the high mountain world as a mineral garden, a
precious gift to be enjoyed and carefully preserved by all.
Gaston began climbing at 14, in the Calanques near his native Marseille,
scrambling up high cliffs that fall sheer into the sea. He continued on Mont
Sainte-Victoire, the huge limestone formation in Provence so often painted by
Cezanne. During World War II, he graduated from the French training program
Jeunesse et Montagne, and in 1946. despite being an “outsider”, was accepted
in the Compagnie des Guides in Chamonix. He was a key member of the first
climbing expedition to break through the X000-meter barrier. This was the 1950
French expedition to Annapuma, the highest peak in the world climbed at that
time.
By the end of his life, Rebuffat had made over 1200 climbs officially
classified as “difficile” or “tres difficile”, including many first ascents in the
Mont Blanc massif. He was the first (and probably the only) guide to lead clients
up all six of the major north faces of the Alps: The Eiger, the Walker Spur of the
Grandes Jorasses, the Matterhorn, the Cima Grande di Lavaredo, the Drus and
the Piz Badile. He often said his reward was the smile in his clients’ eyes when
they reached the summit.
His own climbing style was elegant and precise, and his tall, angular figure
-even on a distant wall or spire-was unmistakable for its distinctive grace,
sureness, and the Jacquard sweater which was his hallmark. Up close, his thin
face, his metallic glance, and his grin conveyed both modesty and a fierce will.
327
328 THE AMERICAN ALPINE JOURNAL 1986
Rebuffat combined a mastery of modem climbing techniques with a roman-
tic concept of the mountains rooted in the 19th century pioneers he so admired.
His descriptions of ascents were never burdened with logistical trivia. He pre-
ferred to speak in more philosophical, even poetic, terms of what mountains do
for man rather than what men do to mountains. Perhaps his basic attitude toward
the mountain environment might be termed passionate prudence; “lucidity” was
a word he often used in writing of climbing. He felt the mountains should be
open to everyone, and that each was free to learn the rules his own way. He
therefore neither espoused nor disparaged solo or speed climbing, but he openly
deplored the competitiveness that led to the nationalistic planting of summit
flags.
Gaston Rebuffat was an extraordinary human being. He was not only a
happy family man but also completely self-made. He had no formal education
beyond high school, yet he became a foremost mountaineering writer. He was
for many years editor of the alpinism column in the Paris daily, Le Monde,
directed a mountaineering book series for the major French publisher, Denoel,
and with his son Joel, established a publishing house of his own in Geneva. He
wrote twenty mountaineering works which were translated into many languages
and reached millions of readers. There are probably few climbers today who
have not read one of his works, seen his stunning climbing photographs, or
heard him narrate his prize-winning mountain films such as Etoiles et Tempe^tes,
Entre Terre et Ciel, and Les Horizons Gagne’s .
In some far-off time and place, outer space dwellers may one day marvel at
the photograph sealed in the first American space probe, where Rebuffat’s linear
figure, on an aiguille silhouetted against Mont Blanc, symbolizes the soaring
human spirit as nothing else could.
Gaston Rebuffat, guide, friend, and for many the archetypal mountaineer,
has gone on ahead. His life reminds us that “The struggle alone toward the
summits is enough to fill man’s heart.” The words are from Albert Camus, but
the concept is pure Rebuffat.
ARTHUR KING PETERS
TYeary

Mountain climber
Calif.
Nov 14, 2007 - 04:08pm PT
Starlight and Storm. A classic that hepled change my life. One of several "phantom Mentors".
Tony
Watusi

Social climber
Newport, OR
Nov 14, 2007 - 04:13pm PT
I thought he was Bad-Ass also!
Mighty Hiker

Social climber
Vancouver, B.C.
Nov 14, 2007 - 04:19pm PT
I saw him speak in Vancouver, in spring 1971, just when I was starting to climb. I don't remember much about it, and didn't really know who he was, but my father wanted to go. His presentation seemed fairly poetic. A few weeks later, we saw Royal Robbins speak.
tom woods

Gym climber
Bishop, CA
Nov 14, 2007 - 04:24pm PT
Gaston got me into the sport. I found a copy of On Snow and Rock in the attic when I was a kid. I guess my dad bought it in the 50's so he could learn. That second shot that you posted, that was the one. that got me.

Starlight and Storm is great, but On Snow and Rock is the best. That's the one where he shows us how to climb off widths by pulling them apart, hence the "Gaston" move. A few little details aside the book is still relevant, one piece of advice I can quote off the top of my head since I'm at work. Pertaining to packing a rucksack...."weight is my enemy but at the same time I must not forget anything."

Annapurna is a classic book, and you can read between the lines to see how bad ass Gaston was on that mountain.


Tom
golsen

Social climber
kennewick, wa
Nov 14, 2007 - 04:25pm PT
This was one of my all time faves....



Used to draw pics of this when I was a kid.
bhilden

Trad climber
Mountain View, CA
Nov 14, 2007 - 05:06pm PT
In a somewhat ironic end to an incredible career Rebuffat died of breast cancer.

Bruce
'Pass the Pitons' Pete

Big Wall climber
like Oakville, Ontario, Canada, eh?
Nov 14, 2007 - 05:44pm PT
Can someone post the famous photo of him doing the "Gaston" move?
Jonny D

Social climber
Lost Angelez, Kalifornia
Nov 14, 2007 - 06:02pm PT
one of my childhood heroes. i had the pleasure to meet him on a lecture in new york about a year before he passed on, he was very passionate about conservation in the mountains and in particular mont blanc.
The Warbler

climber
the edge of America
Nov 14, 2007 - 06:28pm PT
His book "Between Heaven and Earth" has some awesome black and whites of the Alps and was a great inspiration to me as a young climber.
survival

Big Wall climber
arlington, va
Nov 14, 2007 - 08:15pm PT
I was a sophmore at Bend high school and was in the library working on a history project, and got soooo busted for having On Snow and Rock hidden inside my history book. My history teacher was a real D#@k and had no sense of humor when I told him I was reading history! That guy was truly an inspiration.
Brian

climber
Cali
Nov 14, 2007 - 08:19pm PT
I read "Starlight and Storm" over and over. Here is a taste...

To succeed in scaling the great north faces, the pioneers had to climb for two or three days and spend at least one night clinging to the face. Nowadays, despite our knowledge of the routes, you still very often have to bivouac on some of them. But this is no drawback. At the end of the day the mountaineer looks for a ledge, lays down his sack, hammers in a piton and attaches himself to it. After the hard, acrobatic effort of the climb he is lost—like the poet—in contemplation, but to a greater degree than the poet he can be a part of the hills around. The man who bivouacs becomes one with the mountain. On his bed of stone, leaning against the great wall, facing the empty space which has become his friend, he watches the sun fade over the horizon on his left, while on his right the sky spreads its mantle of stars. At first he is wakeful, then, if he can, he sleeps, then wakes again, watches the stars and sleeps again, then at last he stays awake and watches. On his right the sun will return, having made its great voyage below this shield of scattered diamonds. The man who climbs only in good weather, starting from huts and never bivouacking, appreciates the splendor of the mountains but not their mystery, the dark of their night, the depth of the sky above. I know enthusiastic lads who flee the city at week-ends to the Forest of Fontainebleu or the Calanques. On Sunday they climb, but beforehand, on the Saturday evening, they bivouac. Theirs is the taste for nature and the universe. On the other hand, some mountaineers are proud of having done all their climbs without bivouac. How much they have missed! And the same applies to those who only enjoy rock-climbing, or only the ice climbs, only the ridges or the faces. We should refuse none of the thousand and one joys that the mountains offers us at every turn. We should brush nothing aside, set no restrictions. We should experience hunger and thirst, be able to go fast, but also know how to go slowly and to contemplate. Variety is the spice of life. —Gaston Rebuffat, "Starlight and Storm"

Brian

Erik

Ice climber
Topic Author's Reply - Nov 14, 2007 - 08:47pm PT
Speaking of Rebuffat on bivouacs, I read in his book Glace Neige et Roc how he was aid climbing once when nightfall caught up to him, and he ended up spending the entire night standing up in his etriers! He wrote that he tried sitting in them, but they cut off the circulation to his legs so he had to stand. THAT must have been a loooooong night...
I remember trying to finish the Nipple pitch on Zodiac, about 30 feet short of the belay, when night fell. My headlamp for some reason wouldn't work, and in the increasing darkness I actually thought that I'd have to "pull a Gaston" for the night in my aiders. Luckily there was just enough moonlight that came out to sorta see the crack and my gear...phew.
graniteclimber

Trad climber
Nowhere
Nov 14, 2007 - 09:11pm PT


What a bad ass. Where is his pro?
Tom

Big Wall climber
San Luis Obispo CA
Nov 14, 2007 - 09:13pm PT
Can someone post the famous photo of him doing the "Gaston" move?

There's a bunch of OW moves depicted in the aforementioned book, "On Ice, and Snow, and Rock", including the Gaston.

"Rabbit Foot" was was on of the greats, and that book is FULL of great photos. I still have it, but I don't have a scanner. Somebody else will have to post the photo here.


What a bad ass. Where is his pro?

In his mind, his experience and his nerve.

That photo also appears in On Ice and Snow and Rock. There's another amazing photo, a panorama of his going 60-80 feet up a 3-foot chimney, no pro, with the rope hanging down in space. When I finally got to the Alcove on El Cap, and looked at the Spire Chimney, I thought of that photo, shuddered, and thanked God our route, Bermuda Dunes, went up the corner system to the right of the Spire instead.

Largo

Sport climber
Venice, Ca
Nov 14, 2007 - 09:18pm PT
When I was just starting out I used to look at those pictures and wonder how it was that he ran he rope all the way out on every single climb. Most of those shots are posed but they captured something poetic and sparked my imagination.

And Gaston's Dudly Do-right posture was also something.

JL
mooser

Trad climber
seattle
Nov 14, 2007 - 09:32pm PT
I read his book in the Poway High School Library until I knew every page before I turned to it. For someone starting out in the mid-70s, his Lyle Lovett-esque hairdo, big boots, and thick sweater always struck me as strange. I mean, the rest of us were wearing painter's pants, t-shirts, bandanas, and stuff, and then there was this guy Gaston. I was in awe of him then, and I still am.
Mighty Hiker

Social climber
Vancouver, B.C.
Nov 14, 2007 - 09:56pm PT
The Brits used to nickname him "Ghastly Rubberface", pretending to sneer at his Gallic elegance. Secretly they probably envied him for his grace and success.
Jello

Social climber
No Ut
Nov 14, 2007 - 10:57pm PT
"Action and contemplation - never one without the other."
-Gaston Rebbufat

-JelloContemplatesGaston
marty(r)

climber
beneath the valley of ultravegans
Nov 15, 2007 - 06:19am PT
That sweater was all the pro he needed. Gaston was the Suave!
mooser

Trad climber
seattle
Nov 15, 2007 - 07:05am PT
Kind of like wearing a "cable-knit crash pad." Way ahead of his time.
Moof

Big Wall climber
A cube at my soul sucking job in Oregon
Nov 15, 2007 - 08:27am PT
Saw his ~1960 book used at at Powell's bookstore recently. Crazy the things they did in crappy hiking boots! Gotta go back and buy it...
Jaybro

Social climber
The West
Nov 15, 2007 - 03:15pm PT

slobmonster

Trad climber
berkeley, ca
Nov 15, 2007 - 04:20pm PT

neebee

Social climber
calif/texas
Feb 4, 2012 - 09:24pm PT
hey there, say, all... just a bump...

say this while trailing through the ol' supertopo...

feel free to share more on this...

another climber that i had never known about...

some nice pics here...



thanks for the post of this, from ?back in 2007, think this was...

*got to go do some work, but wow:
sure look forward to see if more show up here...

god blesss...
:)
johntp

Trad climber
socal
Feb 4, 2012 - 10:07pm PT
"Action and contemplation - never one without the other."
-Gaston Rebbufat

No doubt!
Patrick Oliver

Boulder climber
Fruita, Colorado
Feb 4, 2012 - 10:13pm PT
Gaston was a hero to Larry Dalke and me, during our early
days in Eldorado and around Boulder. We admired him, in part
because of the impressive photos. I met Rebuffat in Telluride in
1984, just before his passing, and he seemed serene and strong,
a gentleman truly. Through the years I have come to realize just
how good Rebuffat was as a climber. Because a few of his photos
were posed, some belittled him. He was, in fact, one of the great
master climbers. He also was an outstanding writer. To read
"Starlight and Storm," for example, is to encounter the clearest
writing, very gorgeous straightforward language by one of the
finest mountaineering writers. I recently dug out that book and
read it again, cover to cover. It's always good. It always arouses
what is truly important about climbing and the mountains.
Marlow

Sport climber
OSLO
Feb 5, 2012 - 02:07am PT

"Some mountaineers are proud of having done all their climbs without bivouac. How much they have missed ! And the same applies to those who enjoy only rock climbing, or only the ice climbs, only the ridges or faces. We should refuse none of the thousands and one joys that the mountains offer us at every turn. We should brush nothing aside, set no restrictions. We should experience hunger and thirst, be able to go fast, but also to go slowly and to contemplate."

Just for fun - a quite poetic cartoon:
donini

Trad climber
Ouray, Colorado
Feb 5, 2012 - 06:39am PT
Had my share of heroes bitd- Bonatti, Buhl and others, Gaston wasn't one of them. I was always blown away at the extaordinarily "posed" nature of every photo in which he appeared.
Jim Clipper

climber
from: forests to tree farms
Feb 5, 2012 - 07:10am PT
I'm sure I'm paraphrasing history to fit my worldview. It seems like climbers from the Victorian Era were predominately from a privileged class. Honor, bravery, propriety, and maybe even taking one for GOD or the team, were valued. I don't know how far that ethos was carried into the 20th century. Still, there was undoubtedly a provincialism in Europe, at least in the early 1900's, that greatly affected many people. Did it ever influence climbing groups, locally, internationally, or even individually? Today, it seems that environmental issues, and diminishing resources are preeminent issues. I hope that the Web, may change that ...

Finally, I haven't seen many photos, nor climbed many places, to really know how posed Rebuffat was. Film, and photography were probably relatively rare when he was making his mark. I wonder how much of his image was influenced by others. Still, there is definitely some art in climbing that chimney.

2 cents from a'merican.
HuecoRat

Trad climber
NJ
Feb 5, 2012 - 09:11am PT
Got a whole library of Rebuffat books that I picked up at a bookshop in Ohio. All first editions, paid $5 each. They didn't know what they had.

Starlight and Storm (one of my favorites by anyone)
Entre Terre et Ciel (Between Heaven and Earth, in french)
Men and the Matterhorn
On Ice and Snow and Rock
The Mont Blanc Massif: the 100 Finest Routes
and...
Annapurna (not by him, but he's in there)

Terrific books. They express a very poetic view of the climbing life. Well worth the time.
Steve Grossman

Trad climber
Seattle, WA
Feb 5, 2012 - 09:13am PT
More intergalactic Gaston here...

http://www.supertopo.com/climbing/thread.php?topic_id=522822&msg=1363947#msg1363947
Bob Culp

Trad climber
Boulder, CO
Feb 5, 2012 - 09:29am PT
It's always hard to compare people. The first two climbing books I bought were Lonely Challenge by Buhl and Starlight and Storm by Rebuffat. Both inspired me in different ways. About his posed pictures - yep, they were. I was particularly intrigued by the one where he is perched on the edge of a rock face with his rope hanging free. As it turns out I guess he climbed up on the other side and traversed around for the picture. When I found myself there one time I thought it would be cool to pose myself in the same place. Backed off.
I was impressed by the fact though that in spite of all that Rebuffat was an excellent alpinist. I did this route on the S Face of the Midi with sticky rubber, friends, etc and thought it excellent - kind of like a moderate in Lumpe Ridge. But with 4 pitons and bendy leather mountain boots? Not so much.
I have done a bunch of climbs he mentions in his 100 best routes and was always impressed by the times he posted. Sandbags maybe, but I figure he could do them. As a rule of thumb you could almost double the times he listed.
I particularly like his climb of the N Face of the Dru where he did it in a day and got back to Cham for the Guide's Fete. As he said in his book, it should be pointed out that his companion T. Habron (or some such) was a very fast walker. Right.
Met him one time and he seemed like a very nice guy.
guido

Trad climber
Santa Cruz/New Zealand/South Pacific
Feb 5, 2012 - 09:39am PT
Perhaps it is time for a 2nd ascent of the G Rubberfat Overhang? All you need is a blizzard and road closure.
http://www.supertopo.com/climbers-forum/1359633/G-Rubberfat-Overhang-First-Ascent-1961
Niels

climber
Denmark
Feb 5, 2012 - 11:01am PT
I found Rebuffat's On Ice and Rock and Snow at the Sac State library while doing a report on mountaineering in 8th grade. There was something about his writing style and the beautiful photos of the Mont Blanc massif that got my attention and I always wanted to visit Chamonix and become an alpinist after that. Later on, I discovered The Mont Blanc Massif: The 100 Finest Routes, which is still my favorite climbing book. Somehow, he manages to hit the nail on the head with regard to what is enjoyable and interesting about climbing, at least for me.

I finally managed to visit Chamonix for the first time when I was 31. I had very high expectations but they were completely exceeded. Really a great place and no wonder that it inspired him.

Disappointed to learn that some of the photos were posed but he's still the man as far as I'm concerned.
Marlow

Sport climber
OSLO
Feb 5, 2012 - 11:12am PT
Rebuffat was an excellent climber and an excellent author and he knew both how to inspire and how to become famous. The posing was part of the ability to inspire and become famous. I can see why that can disappoint. To me it makes no difference as long as making other people suffer was no part of it.

The Mont Blanc guide is part of a series of guides (Alpes, Dolomites) where Rebuffat was in part author, in part editor.
Brokedownclimber

Trad climber
Douglas, WY
Feb 5, 2012 - 11:31am PT
I had the privelege of hearing Rebuffat narrate his film Starlight and Storm back in 1965; that was at South High School in Denver. The audience was very appreciative, but in one instance, impolite. There is a sequence in the film of Gaston driving a piton on the NW face of the Piz Badile, clipping in to it, then using the thing as a handhold (French Free, anyone?), and then standing on it for a foothold. The audience laughed; Rebuffat was perplexed and didn't understand what was funny.

I always thought Rebuffat was bigger than life due to his elegant photographs. Yes they were posed, but as Bob implied earlier in this thread, it took some balls to get into the posed positions. Almost everyone in Boulder was trying to emulate Gaston back in the very early 1960's, vis a vis photograpic posing.

A "P.S." added as an edit: I believe that Jan accompanied me that evening, and it was part of the inspiration for the subsequent Yosemite trip that Summer?
Marlow

Sport climber
OSLO
Feb 5, 2012 - 11:45am PT
In Scandinavia standing on the bolts is a tradition. LOL... Here represented by philosophy professor Arne Næss.

Arne Naess sr.
Arne Naess sr.
neebee

Social climber
calif/texas
Feb 5, 2012 - 03:18pm PT
hey there say, all...

thanks for all the great shares here added on to the bump...


one note:
obviously i can see why climbers would not take to the 'posed pics'
(even as rodeo folks, surfer, and any etcs, would as to seeing 'untruths)
but those that are artist or photographers WOULD take to seeing the artist value of the beauty of the scenery, for inspiration to either enjoy these same "let's do it"s, or, for the "art of the moment at hand" that they inspire the heart to SEE, when one can not DO IT themselves--if, of course--there was qualifying SUBSTANCE that went with those poses, from "said poser"...

art, and setting up scenes, is an art all its own, and in some ways
does not match climbing...
*as, could be dangerous outcome, i know, if someone tried to do poses to match his... (though i saw the story note, posted here, as to how one of you all, easily SAW this, after a climb, and BACKED off from doing so)....


the honorable note here as to him, as to the posed pics is this:
folks DO see-and-know that he was a skilled alpinist, and that is what makes the full picture of the man... he knew what he was doing...


seems from all these shares, he was both skilled climber,
with the ol' "hidden artist" inside, just longing to freely express this ART in his way,from his heart, as to the appeal-to-the-eye, that he had for doing such with...
(and perhaps as someone said here, for to sell photos, too, but then, that is what artist and photographers, do as well) :)

very interesing part of history...

thank you all so very much! :)
never would have seen or learned any of this...
thanks again! :)
tom woods

Gym climber
Bishop, CA
Feb 5, 2012 - 05:24pm PT
Hey Dononni- all the shots are posed these days, people are followed around by camera crews.

Red shirts- nobody would wear them except that their photographer says they have to.

Perhaps the posed nature of the Gaston shots aren't so important anymore?

He was the cool head in the Annapurna book, and I'll be danged, those posed shots were inspirational when I was a kid.

Dan-O had that posed flag shot at the Needles, it was still real, and still cool.
donini

Trad climber
Ouray, Colorado
Feb 5, 2012 - 07:04pm PT
Hey Woods, don't recall flamboyant, even arrogant, posed photos from Rebuffat contemporaries like Bonatti. Geez, I even spelled your name correctly.
tom woods

Gym climber
Bishop, CA
Feb 5, 2012 - 07:18pm PT
Sorry about that, but my name is easier, you gotta admit. I did think about it, to be honest. At first I thought two n's after the o, but I decided two n's nni part. I guess I was wrong on both counts.

I loved Gaston as a kid, and I don't know the story of the posed shots, but Honnold took a full film crew back up to Half Dome to re-enact his free solo wearing a Patagonia shirt- does that really take away from the real experience?

It probably does, I guess, but that footage of Gaston posted above (which (I had never seen before) shows a guy back in the day climbing with good technique with primitive gear.

This might not seem so unique for you older climbers, but for those of us who saw the photos in the 80's, they were inspirational.
tom woods

Gym climber
Bishop, CA
Feb 5, 2012 - 07:28pm PT
Just a bump on Donini's point, Buhl and Bonatti were also heroes of the early years for me. Buhl especially, but that could be another whole thread.
donini

Trad climber
Ouray, Colorado
Feb 5, 2012 - 07:29pm PT
I guess I was a little crusty Tom, just got in from a trip from Chile that was a day longer than scheduled due to mechanical breakdowns, cancelled flights etc.- heading off to bed. I will say, I tried to find a sweater like his.
tom woods

Gym climber
Bishop, CA
Feb 5, 2012 - 07:35pm PT
Me too, but something like that has to be custom made, or found at a truly run down Salvation Army in Versailles. - Hey I spelled Versailles right, at least the red squiggly lines of the spell check say so anyway.

Have a good night.
guido

Trad climber
Santa Cruz/New Zealand/South Pacific
Feb 5, 2012 - 07:54pm PT
Donini a little crusty by his own admission. Now, that is an occasion for Webster to create a new word to mitigate the Donini Factor. Welcome back Jim.
Jennie

Trad climber
Elk Creek, Idaho
Feb 5, 2012 - 11:14pm PT
Thanks for posting the video, Marlow...… pièce de résistance from the past!

Very precise and flowing style for a larger framed guy.

Wish there were more video recordings of climbers and climbing from generations past…
Patrick Oliver

Boulder climber
Fruita, Colorado
Feb 5, 2012 - 11:20pm PT
Yes some of the photos were posed, but still he was a very
fine climber. For young people, such as we, back then, to see
those photos..., well, they inspired some of us, gave us a sense of the
Alps...
Randisi

Boulder climber
Dalian, Liaoning
Feb 6, 2012 - 01:02am PT
I imagine Bonatti wasn't exactly fond of having his picture taken, posed or not, due his relation to the press after the whole K2 debacle.
Brian in SLC

Social climber
Salt Lake City, UT
Feb 6, 2012 - 08:32am PT
Bonatti didn't exactly climb in a vacuum...

Bonatti Match cover 13 March 1965
Bonatti Match cover 13 March 1965
Credit: Brian in SLC

http://cdn2-b.examiner.com/sites/default/files/styles/image_full_width/hash/9e/b0/9eb08ab2db813db44cc2c251a223917b.jpg

Seen a few of the Rubberfat routes in the Calanques...nice! His 100 best series was great.
Randisi

Boulder climber
Dalian, Liaoning
Feb 6, 2012 - 08:40am PT
Did Rebuffat really die from breast cancer?
Alan Rubin

climber
Amherst,MA.
Feb 6, 2012 - 09:33am PT
I thought he died of lung cancer from the ever-present pipe in his mouth, but surely could be wrong on that. Back in the early '60s Rebuffat, through his books, was my first introduction to modern climbing (a couple of years before I ever actually climbed myself). His book "Starlight and Storm" was inspirational to an early teen-age climbing wannabe (and his 6 North Faces have largely stood the test of time---even today one who has climbed them all has surely earned his/her "spurs" as an alpinist.)His later photo/technique book On Rock, Snow, and Ice (I think)was equally important and inspirational, while his still later 100 Finest in the Mt. Blanc Massif (and its later companion volumes)also remains a touchstone and a great tick list for visitors to the Alps. And he was very clearly a top climber of his era. Even his peers, such as the great Lionel Terray acknowledged that it was Rebuffat who led the way in the revival and advance of difficult French alpinism in the immediate post-World War 2 years. Sure he had an ego, and some of his photos were over-posed, but he definitely wasn't the first climber, and surely was not the last, to exhibit those traits, and they should in no way diminish his very real accomplishments nor his influence on many generations of climbers.
WBraun

climber
Feb 6, 2012 - 09:44am PT
I saw the video of him climbing.

He's got sh!t for boots compared to modern standards for what he's climbing.

He's running it out like a true psycho compared to modern climbers who have 40 pounds of cams on their rack for the same pitch.

He raps the rope around his waist and takes off compared to the modern climber doing up a 100 different vitamin pills and doing their so called yoga before they ever get off the ground.

No wonder so little climbers back then.

Now after all this gear bullsh!t and technological advances all the mains stream people came and called it "SPORT" .....

Brian in SLC

Social climber
Salt Lake City, UT
Feb 6, 2012 - 09:46am PT
Really would like to see/have a copy of his book on the Calanques...

Calanques Sainte Baume Sainte Victoire Les 400 plus belles escalades et randonnées

If anyone has one they'd part with, give me a shout!

Climbed at all three venues...great! Wish the big routes at Sainte Baume were still open...

Cheers.
scuffy b

climber
heading slowly NNW
Feb 6, 2012 - 10:05am PT
I know some guys who quite frequently climb in red shirts, even when no
photographer is present.

Spelling someone's name right...really, if it's right there in front of
you, how hard can it be to show that much respect?
Fat Dad

Trad climber
Los Angeles, CA
Feb 6, 2012 - 10:14am PT
When I started climbing in the late 70s, Rebuffat books still circulated in the stores. For me, as a beginning climber--along with those family camping trips to the Valley and looking up at the Captain--they represented the ideal of what I thought a climber was and should be. That fact that some of his photos looked like hero shots mattered not a wit.
Marlow

Sport climber
OSLO
Feb 6, 2012 - 10:32am PT
Brian,

Try this: http://www.priceminister.com/offer/buy/134781640/calanques-sainte-baume-sainte-victoire-les-400-plus-belles-escalades-et-randonnees-de-rebuffat-gaston.html

I looked for one 15 months before I found one.
Erik

Trad climber
Topic Author's Reply - Feb 6, 2012 - 05:01pm PT
Holy necro thread! How far back in the archives did you have to go to resurrect this one?

I re-read Annapurna a short while ago, and was quite amused at this little passage:

"Rebuffat had a scandalous origin for a mountaineer, and even worse for a guide. He was born at the seaside!"

Niels

climber
Denmark, formerly Sacramento
Feb 7, 2012 - 01:03pm PT
There's also a copy of his guide to the Calanques in the French Alpine Club hut at the Verdon Gorge.

Bump for Rebuffat!
Marlow

Sport climber
OSLO
Mar 24, 2013 - 12:25pm PT
Gaston Rebuffat in Alpinisme & Randonnee Nov-Dec 1996
Credit: Marlow
Credit: Marlow
Credit: Marlow
Credit: Marlow
Credit: Marlow
Credit: Marlow
Credit: Marlow
Credit: Marlow
Credit: Marlow
Credit: Marlow
Nilepoc

Big Wall climber
Tx
Mar 27, 2013 - 02:07pm PT
Neige et Roc, French climbing instructional book from 1959
Neige et Roc, French climbing instructional book from 1959
Credit: Nilepoc

The spine is exposed unfortunately.
The spine is exposed unfortunately.
Credit: Nilepoc

Title page
Title page
Credit: Nilepoc

He book is inscribed from Ann Bronson feb 5 1961
He book is inscribed from Ann Bronson feb 5 1961
Credit: Nilepoc

Old old school shoes.
Old old school shoes.
Credit: Nilepoc

How to aid
How to aid
Credit: Nilepoc

How to aid a roof
How to aid a roof
Credit: Nilepoc

So this fine book is looking for a new home. I figured someone here would be happy to care for it and maybe get the binding fixed. PM me first and it's yours. All I ask is that you pay postage. I am cleaning out the bookcase and want to find this gem a home. I imagine it isn't worth a whole lot due to the spine damage.
Marlow

Sport climber
OSLO
Sep 10, 2013 - 11:42am PT

Gaston Rebuffat - Entre terre et ciel

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