This was one of my favorite AAJ feature stories to collaborate on and design for the 2014 book. We finally got around to sharing it online this week: http://on.fb.me/ZgipNa
At first, I felt my fair share of doubt about Steck's ascent and giving him the top feature space in the AAJ. Mostly, I think my irking came from concern that the huge onslaught of media attention was overshadowing all the groundbreaking "night naked" and solo alpine-style ascents that had occurred prior—a path, I felt, Steck was merely following in, not inventing. And, call me a purist, but I just don't like when climbs are held up on a podium to be judged against others'. Fuck that—right?
Needless to say, Dougald, Lindsay, and I all put months of thought into how to do this right, and, I have to say, this feature does an incredible job of addressing my concerns. So, I couldn't be more happy with the final outcome. Just imagine being alone amongst the white tentacles of Annapurna's sprawling south face...Is there anything more pure in climbing? Is there an act any more sublime?