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WikiProject Mountains (Rated C-class, Top-importance)
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1911 text[edit]

To tell the truth, the 1911EB text doesn't add much value, except for some history; we really don't want to give the impression that manila rope is still favored! I would suggest confining it to its own section, identified as "text from 1911EB" (several other articles do this), and using to crib from in the article proper, because the presentation and layout seem worthy of emulation. Stan 14:07, 15 Jan 2004 (UTC)

When I added the 1911EB text, I did some copyediting to update parts of the language but it wasn't a rewrite that's for sure. I've seen some of the other articles that place the 1911 EB text into a separate section. I think it might actually discourage people from providing a proper rewrite in some cases. I don't believe I have edited an article that was in that format (as yet anyways). RedWolf 05:26, Feb 4, 2004 (UTC)

To tell the truth I disagree. this rubbish which you learn us is awesome. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 01:37, 12 August 2011 (UTC)

The Haute Route[edit]

I started a page on the famous L'Haute Route, from Chamonix to Zermatt. anybody want to help flesh out the history of it (19th century) and the details of the route. There are also many variations on the route that I haven't tried - Walkers Route, Sees Fee route, etc. Seabhcan 23:15, 12 May 2004 (UTC)

Never been to Europe (yet) but I'd be interested in reading about the route when the article's done. Sounds like it would be quite interesting to consider trying if I ever get out that way. RedWolf 01:17, May 13, 2004 (UTC)


No photos? Perhaps someone with more extreme ascents than I has some snaps of mountaineering from close-up?

Most likely we have relevant pics in our collection already, uploaded for some other article; just have to find them. Stan 21:18, 4 Jan 2005 (UTC)
Good idea, I'll have a look through wikisource tonight (google image search isn't showing much) -- if nothing else, I seem to remember there being a wikipedia image-request page somewhere. Ojw 21:31, 4 Jan 2005 (UTC) Maybe not this one?
Remember, don't upload pictures to Wikipedia copied from web sites unless you know their copyright status. Your own pictures or those known as being public domain are best. I could probably throw up a picture or two from my collection when I have a moment to look for one. RedWolf 04:01, Jan 5, 2005 (UTC)
We're probably okay (legally if not artistically ;) with the photos from [1], but I'll make that clearer on my user page. Ojw 12:59, 5 Jan 2005 (UTC)

Comment moved from article[edit]

User: added a comment after "Hazards" saying:

Everything from here down (as at Feb 25, 2005) is *very* questionable. At the very least, it is probably well out of date - vintage 1880. Looks like direct plagiarism from Edward Whymper? If you like climbing with hemp rope, then read on regardless!

Moved here without comment by me. -- John Fader 00:13, 26 Feb 2005 (UTC)

If the anon IP had read this talk page, they would have found out that much of the article had originally come from the 1911 EB. Myself and others have been slowly updating the content. As you correctly pointed out, that commentary belongs on the talk page and not in the article. RedWolf 02:22, Feb 26, 2005 (UTC)


The last of the outright incorrect information from 1911 is gone, I believe, which had been material that concerned the use of ropes. The quality of the remaining material from 1911 is remarkably good- they must have had at least one real climber on their staff. However, the article has big holes and even some of the 1911 stuff should be re-written further. Most anchor, belay, roped travel, etc., discussions are already covered in other articles, so what this article needs is information about how rope use in mountaineering differs from that in simple rock climbing. The history of mountaineering virtually ends in 1897, so we need to add some more 20th century information, and maybe merge into a separate article with the history of rock climbing. Many hands make light work. Cheers, -Willmcw 23:20, Mar 29, 2005 (UTC)


It seems that the Inca Empire should be mentioned somewhere in the history section. While not strictly mountaineering, they are known to have summited several of the volcanoes in the Cordillera Occidental for the purpose of human sacrifice. I'm no expert, so I don't have dates or anything other than this general information. A quick google search revealed this. --Professorbikeybike 19:26, 1 September 2005 (UTC)

  • A paragraph or two on the IE's contribution seems worthy of inclusion but cultural history is not my forte so please go ahead and add a first cut. RedWolf 07:15, September 4, 2005 (UTC)

Did the history of mountaineering ended around 1950...?

Nothing but Hazards and history?[edit]

It seems strange to me that the bulk of this article, according to the TOC, are Hazards and History. Surely there are a lot more (important?) categories that should be in here? If I have time, I would like to edit / re-write the article to have a TOC similair to the following:

(Off the top of my head, in no particular order)

  • Techniques / Styles
    • Route Planning
    • Protection on Rock / Snow / Ice
    • Ropecraft
    • Moving on Rock
    • Moving on Snow
    • Moving on Ice
    • Descent
    • Bivouacs / Shelter
    • Alpine Style / Siege Style
  • Starting out (as a beginner)
  • History (Already Covered?)
  • Locations / Areas
  • Celebreties (maybe merge with next item?)
  • Notable Achievements

I'll get on this in a couple of days if no one disagrees, comments appreciated. (and after I memorise style guides, yes I am a noob but I will RTFM). I also have plenty of images I could upload, but I'd rather see the written content first.

Smitz 16:17, 20 September 2005 (UTC)

More work on this article would be terrific. It is largely the originally 1911 text. While it is surprisingly good, it is still missing many topics. I'd just remind you that we aren't looking to make a "how-to" article. Also some of the topics you mention are covered in related articles, like List of climbers, Glossary of climbing terms, and List of climbing topics. Don't worry too much about the style, other editors can help. Cheers, -Willmcw 19:22, 20 September 2005 (UTC)
Why not a how-to article? Wikipedia has the potential to cover everything, so a separate article on that wouldn't be a bad idea. DirkvdM 09:05, 1 November 2005 (UTC)


At what atltitude does the lack of oxygen become a problem? At Wikipedia:Reference_desk/Miscellaneous#Elevation Toytoy says "Some trained experts can climb Mount Everest without oxygen supply. They are supposed to be Martians." Ignoring the second sentence, is this true? DirkvdM 09:07, 1 November 2005 (UTC)

Yes, mountaineers have summited Everest without oxygen. There are no reports that any have been Martians. -Willmcw 09:11, 1 November 2005 (UTC)
  • Lack of oxygen can be a problem for many people at heights below 15,000'. Everyone needs to acclimatize, even those who can summit Everest w/o bottled oxygen. Generally speaking, I would say experienced mountaineers probably don't normally start using bottled oxygen until they probably reach 25,000-27,000'. Aconcagua at 22,831 feet is climbable w/o bottled oxygen, even by non-mountaineers but again acclimatization is a large factor. I can only personally vouch for not needing bottled oxygen at 20,000'. RedWolf 05:12, 4 November 2005 (UTC)
I just added an 'altitude' section based on your answer and with a reference to altitude sickness, both of which were oddly missing. I'm no expert, though, so have a look if it needs more attention. DirkvdM 09:40, 5 November 2005 (UTC)
good article in Wiki on Altitude Sickness. AMS is caused by lack of pressure, rather than lack of oxygen itself, and the consequent alkalosis of the blood, affecting the metabolism and all sorts of other functions. This is stated in the first reference in the AS article, but is hidden in the jargon. I added symptoms, etc, and rewrote quite a bit to improve the writing. Ratagonia 03:50, 6 May 2006 (UTC)
  • From about the beginning of the XXI century in himalaism is distinguished by sporty style. Its main criterion is not to use supplemental oxygen during the entire expedition. This is essential to the ascent was considered sport.

Ascents with use of supplemental oxygen are not currently considered to be no specific achievement and are more often called tourist ascents. Most often it is said that without supplemental oxygen, ascent the professionals, and additional oxygen amateurs. Such information should be included in the article because the difference in ascent with additional oxygen and without it is really very big. The use of supplemental oxygen is a very great help.

In aviation circles as a rough guide the height from which supplemental oxygen is required for an un-acclimatized person is from around 8,000-10,000 feet and above, the actual height where this region starts depending on the physiology of the person. Above this height without oxygen the symptoms of anoxia/hypoxia will be started to be increasingly felt, which unfortunately initially include confusion, an inability to think straight, as well as an unwarranted sense of well-being (in many ways similar to inebriation) which are all dangerous in such circumstances, and may lead to unwise decision making and ultimately irrational actions on behalf of the person affected.
The real danger of low oxygen levels/altitude sickness is that it is insidious and one may not be aware that one is being affected by it until it is too late to do anything about it — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 10:03, 14 July 2015 (UTC)

Why the merge tags?[edit]

Some anon's added merge tags to this and hillwalking, but hasn't had the courtesy to give any explanation as far as I can see. While hillwalking can be seen as intermediate between hiking and mountaineering with some overlap, it's a common expression that differs from either. Munroing is often called hillwalking and while mountaineering may be arguably more accurate in terms of the harder tops, it's rather pretentious sounding. On the other hand Corbetting is nearly always simply hillwalking, and none the worse for that. There's a lot in this article that is irrelevant to lesser bumps, which should have their own place. Enough rambling, the tags went on more than a month ago, so I'll remove them now. ..dave souza, talk 20:41, 13 May 2006 (UTC)


Mountain climbing doesn't require you to be a world-famous gymnast, as implied in the article. It requires training. Every mountain climber has to do several months worth of training before climbing any mountain. I suppose you would have to know some gymnastics, but those skills could be obtained in the months of training. 15:56, 28 August 2006 (UTC)

Sparse article![edit]

I hope that someone makes a go of improving this one. As someone said above: Hazards and history? And the history section is just a series of bulleted points? I came here looking for the philosophy or rationale behind mountain climbing: why do people do it, what do they get out of it. Wasn't sure I'd find what I was seeking, but I didn't expect such a short article.--Ibis3 13:43, 29 August 2006 (UTC)

Order of Sections[edit]

I dont think that the hazards section should be so large and especially not listed first...its certainly not the biggest aspect of the sport...I will work on some alternatives Phreakdigital 04:51, 28 December 2006 (UTC)

The hazards are considerable, but they needn't be so prominent. Note that this article is based on the Encyclopedia Britannica article from 1911. It's been vetted by many editors, but the overall balance may be incorrect still. I'd recommend you start with sources and seek to summarize them. Cheers, -Will Beback · · 08:15, 28 December 2006 (UTC)

Sections still needed[edit]

ok so i believe we need a style category...

alpine style versus expedition style

and we need a gear category containing all the mountaineering gear articles

notable climbers section

Locations / Areas

For to get into mountaineering

plus much more info...someone start on one of these sections

Phreakdigital 21:24, 28 December 2006 (UTC)

This looks good just remember that we aren't a how-to guide. -Will Beback · · 21:46, 28 December 2006 (UTC)
how is the info i have already added? Phreakdigital 22:45, 28 December 2006 (UTC)
Excellent, that's just the right tone. Descriptive, not prescriptive. I fixed up your links and some other minor details. -Will Beback · · 23:05, 28 December 2006 (UTC)

Merge Sections?[edit]

I think that the sections

snow slopes ice slopes

need to be merged into

ice snow

Phreakdigital 23:30, 28 December 2006 (UTC)

Yes, good idea. We might also re-cast the "hazards" as "challenges". -Will Beback · · 03:51, 29 December 2006 (UTC)


The OED supports the claim that Shakespeare coined "mountaineer" (Cymbeline, IV.ii.102); but the line is "Yield, rustic mountaineer!", and Shakespeare means "someone who lives on a mountain." The modern sense is first attested in Coleridge's letter of 9 August 1802: Spent the greater part of the next Day mountaineering., and the sport may begin with John Tyndall's use in 1860: I had improved as a mountaineer since my ascent of Mont Blanc. Septentrionalis PMAnderson 00:28, 22 June 2007 (UTC)


This sentence:

While it began as an all-out attempt to reach the highest point of unclimbed mountains, it has branched into specializations addressing different aspects of mountains and may now be said to consist of three aspects: rock-craft, snow-craft and skiing, depending on whether the route chosen is over rock, snow or ice.

...seems to imply that skiing s the way you climb ice. (talk) 18:28, 13 March 2008 (UTC)

Most dangerous sport in the world[edit]

Deserves to be in the beginning. --Leladax (talk) 16:35, 7 August 2008 (UTC)

Motivations and character traits[edit]

Having only perused the article, I don't perceive there to be any discussion about the psychological reasons for mountain climbers to engage in this activity. I only know of one authority who has voiced their opinion on this aspect, viz. the Austrian psychoanalyst Wilhelm Reich, himself a mountain climber. Reich asserted in his noted work Character Analysis that men who climb mountains do this subcounsciously motivated by an urge to mount their own mother sexually, which would be related to the Oedipus complex. __meco (talk) 16:48, 7 August 2008 (UTC)

I am tempted to be sarcastic, but instead I look forward to the discussion here when you try to include that theory in the article. Have a great day!Jarhed (talk) 22:07, 20 May 2009 (UTC)


A disambiguation link was added based on the results of google searches for the terms Mountaineering and Mountaineer.

Cmcginni (talk) 15:31, 13 August 2008 (UTC)

I know a bit late for a reply but "West Virginia Mountaineers" only returns 844,000 on Google. RedWolf (talk) 07:57, 30 August 2009 (UTC)

Rock technique[edit]

It would make sense to include a short section on rock in the technique section, concentrating on the different techniques used on easy rock climbing and scrambling etc. (short roping, moving together). It only needs to be short and link to a couple of other pages. —Preceding unsigned comment added by Ben1983 (talkcontribs) 16:22, 29 August 2008 (UTC)

Mountaineering in the past[edit]

In the past, mountaineering was not considered as a hobby, sport or a profession. Early attempts to ascend the mountains were rather inspired by other othen sporting events: to build the altars or to see if spirits actually haunted once the forbidden heights, to get an overview of one's own or a neighboring countryside, ot to make meteorological or geological observations. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 23:20, 6 December 2008 (UTC)

Mountaineering is the name of the sport invented by the British in the Alps in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries. With the Industrial Revolution they were the first people with both the time (holidays) and the money, as well as the inclination, to travel and climb mountains. Also they were the first to have organised tourism, with the 'Cooks Tours' offered by Thomas Cook. That's why many of the mountains were first climbed by Britons, nobody else was interested or could get there. It was the British ('the English') who made the Alps into the resorts that they are today, and it was these same people who introduced sports such as downhill skiing, and the bobsleigh. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 19:28, 29 August 2009 (UTC)
Owen Glynne Jones 12.jpg
If I recall correctly, many of the early climbs in the "golden age of alpinism" had some scientific purpose, but in later instances those were merely excuses. While we're on the topic of early mountaineering, I see someone has added this photo from 1900. I had to enlarge it significantly before I could make out the climbers. (Check out that belay technique!) At ordinary sizes it's a useless jumble of broken rock. One option is to find a replacement, and another is to crop the photo down to just the two figures. Thoughts?   Will Beback  talk  08:20, 30 September 2009 (UTC)

Duplicate redirect tags needed?[edit]

Are the redirect tags needed in both the section that searching for "basecamp" redirects to and the beginning of the article, or is it only needed at the beginning of the section, since that is what the searchers will be redirected to anyway. --Jambobambo (talk) 16:09, 4 October 2011 (UTC)

Winter Himalaism[edit]

There is no section on the most extreme style of Mountaineering or winter himalaism, which now goes to the race for the first entry in the eight-thousanders. All known portals and magazines mountain now the main attention is devoted to winter himalaism. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 13:39, 25 July 2014 (UTC)

Is hiking mountaineering?[edit]

The lede includes hiking as a form of mountaineering, but this is not developed in the body of the article, where there isn't even a discussion of scrambling. The article needs to be clearer as to whether or not hiking is is a type of mountaineering. Perhaps the lede should be revised to include something like this:

[Hiking in the mountains becomes a simple form of mountaineering when it involves scrambling, or includes short stretches of the more basic grades of rock climbing.

Rwood128 (talk) 17:07, 1 August 2014 (UTC)

The express purpose of 'Mountaineering' is to climb a peak. Not stroll up one.
Besides, most peaks require - or at least did - the mountaineers to hike some distance on foot to get to the mountain and begin climbing in the first place.
But otherwise, perhaps, yes, some hikes may involve a little simple mountaineering. Generally nowadays mountaineering requires specialised climbing equipment such as ropes and pitons, crampons, etc. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 09:53, 8 April 2015 (UTC)

7 Summits[edit]

The 7 Summits are a huge part of large scale mountaineering, I feel like there should be some mention of them in the article. --Jbrtn44 (talk) 08:42, 5 October 2017 (UTC)

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