DENALI - Deception, Defeat, & Triumph


 To the Top of the Continent - Dr. Frederick Cook,

The Conquest of Mount McKinley - Belmore Browne,

The Ascent of Denali - Hudson Stuck  

With commentary by Art Davidson

Special Walter Harper biography by Yvonne Mozée

Diary of Walter Harper, April 15 - June 14, 1913

Published by: The Mountaineers Books, Seattle

ISBN 0-89886-835-1 

(from the dust cover)

          Three books were written in the early years of the last century.  Each a classic in its own right, together forming the cornerstone of one of the greatest controversies in mountaineering history:  Who made the first true ascent of Mount McKinley?


Whose Claim was the World to Believe?

           The distinguished Dr. Frederick Cook, veteran of polar expeditions and co-founder of the American Alpine Club? 

          Belmore Browne, a young artist with a sense of adventure who set out to disprove Cook?

           Or Hudson Stuck, an Episcopal archdeacon “concerned much more with men than mountains,” determined to champion the survival of the native people of Alaska? 


          In Denali: Deception, Defeat, & Triumph, we have the opportunity to listen to the voices of these great and greatly different men and to try to ferret but the truth for ourselves, and reading between the lines, we may discern some of the deeper truths about what draws us to the mountains.

          Art Davidson made the first winter ascent of Denali, which he recounts in Minus 148°: The Winter Ascent of Mt. McKinley. He lives with his family in the Chugach Mountains near Anchorage, Alaska.

          Yvonne Mozée, independent writer-photographer, was born in Anchorage, Alaska, daughter of Ben Mozée, educator, reindeer superintendent, and U.S. Marshal, and of Jessie Harper, teacher, artist, and sister to Walter Harper.  After her mother’s death, Yvonne found Harper’s diary among her papers. 


          What more can I add to the above except to say that this publication puts the story together better than any other format could possibly attempt.  The saga flows along from the 1903 reconnaissance and 1906 ascent by Cook, the Sourdough attempt in 1910, followed by Browne’s unsuccessful conquest of 1910 and 1912 to disprove Cook, and finally, Hudson Stuck’s successful ascent of 1913.  The descriptions of Walter Harper’s world of almost 90 years ago present the husband of Aunt Frances to our world of today.  Don’t miss reading this new book if you enjoy family history and high adventure. -  Bob


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