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The Last of His Kind: The Life and Adventures of Bradford Washburn, America's Boldest Mountaineer
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The Last of His Kind: The Life and Adventures of Bradford Washburn, America's Boldest Mountaineer

3.71 of 5 stars 3.71  ·  rating details  ·  137 ratings  ·  22 reviews
American Brad Washburn had an impact on his protégés and imitators as profound as that of any other adventurer in the twentieth century. Unquestionably regarded as the greatest mountaineer in Alaskan history and as one of the finest mountain photographers of all time, Washburn transformed American attitudes toward wilderness and revolutionized the art of mountaineering and ...more
Hardcover, 352 pages
Published June 16th 2009 by William Morrow (first published 2009)
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Will Byrnes
The Last of his Kind is an eminently readable bio of a remarkable character. Not only was Bradford Washington arguably the greatest mountaineer of his age, a man who bagged more than a fistful of firsts and who revolutionized climbing techniques, he was an accomplished nature photographer, whose work shooting mountains from an open-door airplane remains the best of its sort. In addition, he was asked to take over a sclerotic natural history museum and transformed it into the Boston Museum of Sci ...more
David Roberts is really one of my favorite climber-authors, but I have to say I was a bit disappointed with "The Last of His Kind: The Life and Adventures of Bradford Washburn, America's Boldest Mountaineer." I think Roberts' close friendship with Washburn got in the way of writing a truly marvelous book.

I found it strange that I read so much mountaineering history about the Himalayas when Washburn himself never actually climbed there (though he took some terrific pictures of Everest by plane wh
If you yearn for independent adventuring you will be inspired by Bradford Washburn's life. A fun read of a man who had an exciting life exploring and climbing mountains, flying planes, doing photography...a bold adventurer.
An interesting and entertaining read about a fixture in American mountaineering. The book felt hastily put together with lax editing and a good bit of repetition. It should have been a great read, but instead was merely o.k.
Marty Nicholas
A paean to his mentor, the great American mountaineer, Brad Washburn it is also an absorbing story of 20th century mountaineering. It will send the reader to Google images for a better view of Washburn's iconic photography. Well worth reading.
Keith Abramo
This book was truly inspirational. Every time I picked it up I found myself only wanting to put it down to climb a mountain. However, the book could have concentrated more on Brad's adventures instead of spending pages on the intricacies to how he set up his camera. Also, many of the stories in this book are about other parties who mad accents of which Brad was not even a part of. Lastly, the tai end of the book seems to cram in a lot of details which took most evolation build up by Brad's adven ...more
I enjoy real life adventure biographies. Bradford Washburn was the premiere climber, mountain photographer, and cartographer for the major mountains in Alaska. Most of his exploits took place in the 1930's. It's interesting to see what he accomplished with the "primitive" technology available at the time. He passed away in 2008 and was active in these areas until the end of his life. Nearly done with the book.

I'm done now. It was a good read and will share with my hiking and mountaineering frien
Beau Smith
Even if you are not into the outdoors, mountaineering , or adventure you will enjoy this incredible bio on Brad Washburn, one of THE innovators and most respected mountaineers ever.

Author David Roberts does a wonderful job in letting the reader know what Brad Washburn is all about with a life history that is rich and and filled with adventure that you just don't get anymore. Wonderful photos fill the book. What a life, what a history!

Beau Smith
The Flying Fist Ranch
This is a biography of an Alaskan Mountaineering Pioneer and one of the greatest nature photographers ever, and it's written by my favorite climbing writer. Unfortunately, it's a bit more geeky of a climbing history than I would have liked (to introduce his climbing partners for a particular expedition, Roberts would then describe the climbing histories of each expedition member and it would get rather lengthy and off-topic). Anywho, enjoyable book, but not the greatest.
I read a lot of these mountain adventure books and this is one of my favorite. It's my favorite because it tells the story of a sucessful, balanced adventurer who was a mentor, leader, and who lived into his late nineties. Many of these books are about Achille's heels and pride goeth before the fall so it's nice to read something different. I've read it twice now and will likely read again.
Elaine Burnes
While the writing is somewhat repetitive and you have to take into account that the author was friends with his subject, this was a terrific read. And Barbara Washburn is a hoot! I've long enjoyed Brad's photography, so reading about how self-taught he was and how little he cared about learning techniques (even though he was friends with Ansel Adams) was remarkable.
We have some original Brad Washburn photos of the White Mts. hanging in our ski house in NH, which he apparently frequented back in the day. So, I had to learn a bit more about this man, and this book was a great appreciation of his myriad skills and pretty incredible legacy. They don't make renaissance men like him anymore.
Cavuoto Cavuoto
Considering Washburn is of my favorite mountaineers and mountain photographers, I was very disappointed at Roberts' portrayal of him. I put the book down before my perception of this guy was further sullied. At least the photos were pretty cool.
Mar 23, 2011 Beth rated it 3 of 5 stars
Shelves: own
I really enjoyed reading about the adventures of Brad Washburn. The one section that I didn't like related to the personal troubles of the Washburn children. This bit should have been left out of the book.
Angela Gritton
I received this book from the goodreads giveaway. I was a little disappointed in much of the book focusing on things unrelated to the subject. The parts that weren't definitely held my interest.
It was summer. I wanted to read about something cold.

Also, Bradford Washburn is my hero. If only for what he did with the Museum of Science in Boston.
An informative book about one of America's mountaineering pioneers. Very inspirational and entertaining.
Fun to read about this mountaineer who put up first ascents in Alaska.
A fascinating read of a remarkable man and life.
Rachel Bailey
Eh. It was alright.
Mountaineering history.
Bob Peru
brad washburn. hero.
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David Roberts is the author of seventeen books on mountaineering, adventure, and the history of the American Southwest. His essays and articles have appeared in National Geographic, National Geographic Adventure, and The Atlantic Monthly, among other publications. He lives i
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