It’s time to get in touch with the vertical world this spring while reading the latest Community Reads project for Inyo County, “Between a Rock and a Hard Place,” by Aron Ralston.
The book chronicles Ralston’s unintended five-day stay in a canyon in Utah after slipping and getting his arm wedged beneath a giant boulder in 2003. Ralston, knowing he would die if he did not escape his rocky captor, made the eventual decision to amputate his arm with a Leatherman’s utility tool and walk back to civilization.
The story of his self mutilation in order to survive is not a secret, but the book reveals Ralston’s character and the decisions that led him to the rock and his journey afterward.
This year marks the Fourth Annual Community Reads project sponsored by the Inyo County Superintendent of Schools that will have the entire county reading and discussing one book.
The project will include a question and answer night with Ralston himself. The project also includes months’ worth of discussion, movies and lectures about a chief aspect of the book: rock climbing.
The Kickoff Event will be a talk celebrating mountain culture with local climber Peter Croft at the Mountain Light Gallery from 5:30-7:30 p.m. Friday, Jan. 27. Croft will also be at the Inyo Council for the Arts from 7-8:30 p.m. Tuesday, Jan. 31 to talk about his legendary climbs in the Eastern Sierra.
The film adaptation of the true story of Joe Simpson climbing in the Andes Mountains and living to tell the tale, “Touching the Void,” now part of the mountaineering canon, will be shown from 7-8:45 p.m. Wednesday, Feb. 1 at Museum of Lone Pine Film History.
Inyo County Search and Rescue, will give a “how to” about the local agency that will include a slideshow and demonstration, at the ICA from 7-8 p.m. Thursday, Feb. 2.
Andy Selters, local photographer/writer/climber, will discuss “Adventure is Living Pictures and Stories,” at the ICA from 7-9 p.m. on Tuesday, Feb. 7.
The movie “First Ascent” featuring local climber Lisa Rands, one of the top internationally-ranked female American climbers, will be shown from 7-8:15 p.m. Wednesday, Feb. 8 at the Museum of Lone Pine Film History.
Avalanche Awareness, the nature of the problem, risks and decision-making, will be discussed at the ICA from 7-8 p.m. on Thursday, Feb. 9.
Saturday, Feb. 11 will be an Avalanche Field Session, Bishop Creek Tour where participants will learn avalanche terrain and rescue techniques. Reservations and a $29 fee are required. Call (760) 873-3262 ext. 402 for details.
A heads-up for the love birds, “Touching the Void,” the true-story of defying death far from home, will play from 7-8:45 p.m. on Valentine’s Day, Thursday, Feb. 14 at the ICA.
The movie “Everest” from 1996 hosted by local guide and Everest-summiter Kurt Wedberg will screen at the Museum of Lone Pine Film History from 7-8 p.m. on Thursday, Feb. 15.
“First Ascent” will run at the ICA from 7-8:15 p.m. on Tuesday, Feb. 21.
On Wednesday, Feb. 22 the film adaptation of the book, “127 Hours,” featuring James Franco, who was nominated for an Oscar for his portrayal of Ralston, will be shown at the Lone Pine Film History Museum from 7-8:30 p.m. The movie plays again from 7-8:30 p.m. on Tuesday, Feb. 28 at the ICA.
The Lone Pine Film History Museum will air the original NBC-TV Aron Ralston interview with Tom Brokaw from 7-8:15 p.m. Feb. 29. Watch Brokaw try and repel down a Utah sandstone cliff in this piece shot on location.
James Wilson, veteran climber and mountaineer and owner of Wilson’s Eastside Sports, will host a discussion on Ralston’s story of survival, from 7-8 p.m. on Thursday, March 1 at the ICA.
A Snowshoeing Class, Bishop Creek Trek will be offered from 9 a.m.-noon, Saturday, March 3. There is a $20 fee. To make a reservation, call (760) 873-3262 ex. 402.
Ralston himself is scheduled to give a speaking event that will include a survival talk, question-and-answer forum with the author and a book sale/signing at the Charles Brown Auditorium at the Tri-County Fairgrounds from noon-1:30 p.m. Tuesday, March 6.
Wedberg will give a talk and slideshow about his own Everest Adventure at the ICA from 7-8 p.m.z Tuesday, March 13. He will host a showing of “Everest” at the ICA from 7-8 p.m. on March 15.
An Evening with Rands, a short film and talk will be held from 7-9 p.m. on Tuesday, March 20 at the ICA. On Saturday, March 24, Rands and friends will hold a bouldering exhibition and demonstration. To participate, meet at the Cerro Coso Community College parking lot at 10 a.m.
Ralston’s interview with Brokaw will play at the ICA from 7-8:15 p.m. on Tuesday, March 27.
For more information, go the Inyo County Superintendent’s website at http://www.inyo.k12.ca.us .
Spellbinder Books in Bishop has plenty of the books for sale in two different editions.