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Hassler Whitney
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aaronfm


May 17, 2009, 9:55 PM
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Hassler Whitney
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I'm fairly new to the sport and climbed Cannon for the first time last week (Moby Grape). Looking through the guidebook, I was surprised to learn that the Whitney of the "Whitney-Gilman Route" was the mathematician (and apparently climber) Hassler Whitney. As a math student, I think of him as one of the founders of my area of research and have read many of his papers from the 30's onward. I know he was a brilliant, kind mathematician, but I had no idea he was a climber.

Does anyone know about his life/achievements as a climber? Did he have other first ascents? Are there many known climbing stories about him (e.g. in some sort of history of alpinism/climbing in the northeast, if such a thing exists. . .)?

And for the mathematicians on RC: did he have colleagues with whom he climbed?


aaronfm


May 18, 2009, 12:31 PM
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Re: [aaronfm] Hassler Whitney [In reply to]
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ok, so I got my hands on Yankee Rock & Ice, and it seems to have a good list of references. . . but I'd still like to know of any other sources. Thanks!


tomcat


May 18, 2009, 2:07 PM
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Re: [aaronfm] Hassler Whitney [In reply to]
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Not sure what you have uncovered so far but....at the time the Whitney Gilman was the hardest route done in the US.They did it in something like 29 pitches,with waist belays,or shoulder belays,and no running belays,or pieces in the pitch.So each guy climbed a bit,stopped and belayed the other up,pretty wild.The famous"pipe" was retropiped.

I hadn't done the route for the last twenty years or so until I did it with Tradchick last year.What a great climb.Do it and savor the history.


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