Last week’s post of photos of Jim Donini in Patagonia and Alaska got me thinking of the other great people with whom I climbed during my Enduring Patagonia years: Alex Hall, J. Jay Brooks, Stefan Hiermaier, Stefan Siegrist, David Fasel, Thomi Ulrich, Boris Strmsek, Forrest Murphy, Steve Schraeder, Waldo Farias, Andres Zegers, Robyn Bunch, and Charlie Fowler.
Sadly, Charlie Fowler, one of the great modern mountain explorers, isn’t with us any more. In late 2006, along with with Christine Boskoff, he was killed in an avalanche in a Tibetan region of China. We shared an incredible adventure together on Cerro Torre’s Compressor Route, bivied in an ice slot on the summit plateau, and then watched the sun rise from that frozen aerie, but aside from that experience, and the connection we maintained in the years after, Charlie had a colossal impact on my life, because he originally passed me the tidbit of information that started me sniffing after the story that would become China’s Wings, which I wrote about in You’d Better Fall In Love With It, one of my first posts on this website.
In Charlie’s honor, here are some of my best digitized photos of him on Cerro Torre’s Compressor Route, in late January, 1996. (Click on any image and you can scroll through an enlarged slide show.)