The Eiger Obsession

March 9, 2007

In the 1960s an American named John Harlin II changed the face of Alpine climbing. Gutsy and gorgeous -- he was known as "the blond god" -- Harlin successfully summitted some of the most treacherous mountains in Europe. But it was the north face of the Eiger that became Harlin's obsession. Living with his wife and two children in Leysin, Switzerland, he spent countless hours planning to climb, waiting to climb, and attempting to climb the massive vertical face. It was the Eiger direct -- the direttissima -- with which John Harlin was particularly obsessed. He wanted to be the first to complete it, and everyone in the Alpine world knew it. \

John Harlin III was nine years old when his father made another attempt on a direct ascent of the notorious Eiger. Harlin had put together a terrific team, and, despite unending storms, he was poised for the summit dash. It was the moment he had long waited for. When Harlin's rope broke, 2,000 feet from the summit, he plummeted 4,000 feet to his death. In the shadow of tragedy, young John Harlin III came of age possessed with the very same passion for risk that drove his father. But he had also promised his mother, a beautiful and brilliant young widow, that he would not be an Alpine climber.

John Harlin III’s world premier of his IMAX movie:

"The Alps: Giants of Nature"
Friday, March 9th at 7:00, 8:00, 9:00pm
OMSI IMAX theater

John Harlin III is also having booksignings:

Saturday, March 10th at 2:00pm
Barnes and Nobles
Downtown Portland

Sunday, March 11th at 4:00pm
Columbia Center for the Arts
Hood River

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