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Halfway to Heaven: My White-knuckled--and Knuckleheaded--Quest for the Rocky Mountain High (Paperback)
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Fat, forty-four, father of three sons, and facing a vasectomy, Mark Obmascik would never have guessed that his next move would be up a 14,000-foot mountain. But when his twelve-year-old son gets bitten by the climbing bug at summer camp, Obmascik can’t resist the opportunity for some high-altitude father-son bonding by hiking a peak together. After their first joint climb, Obmascik, addled by the thin air, decides to keep his head in the clouds and try to scale all fifty-four of Colorado’s 14,000-foot mountains, known as the Fourteeners—and to do it in less than one year. The result is Halfway to Heaven, a rollicking, witty, sometimes harrowing chronicle of an outrageous adventure that is no walk in the park. This "hilarious midlife picaresque" (Publishers Weekly) has garnered wide critical acclaim, was named an "Editor’s Pick" by Parade, won the 2009 National Outdoor Book Award for Outdoor Literature, and made one reviewer laugh so hard he "blew beer out of [his] nose" (Colorado Daily). Like the author’s critically acclaimed debut, The Big Year, it brings a keen eye and sharp humor to an obsessive subculture: climbers who share the author’s crazed passion of scaling all fifty-four of the famed and feared Fourteeners.
About the Author
Mark Obmascik is a Pulitzer Prize–winning journalist and bestselling author of The Big Year, which was made into a movie, and Halfway to Heaven. He won the 2009 National Outdoor Book Award for outdoor literature, the 2003 National Press Club Award for environmental journalism, and was the lead writer for the Denver Post team that won the 2000 Pulitzer Prize. He lives in Denver with his wife and their three sons.
“Obmascik's saga revels in off-color jokes and humiliating pratfalls; the result feels like a raucous bowling night, with moderate oxygen deprivation, on the brink of an abyss." —Publishers Weekly
"The effort is recounted with wit and style, a much easier read than climbing those mountains."