Name Fred Beckey
|Role Rock climber|
|Full Name Friedrich Wolfgang Beckey|
Born 14 January 1923 (age 92) (1923-01-14) Dusseldorf, Germany
Alma mater University of Washington
Occupation Rock climber, mountaineer, author
First ascents Forbidden Peak, Devils Thumb, Mount Hunter, Goode Mountain, Mount Deborah, Davis Peak, Mount Beckey
Books Fred Beckey's 100 Favo, Challenge of the North Cascades, Columbia River to Stevens, Range of glaciers, Cascade Alpine Guide: Cli
Similar People Yvon Chouinard, Heinrich Harrer, Lynn Hill
Education University of Washington
Fred beckey at the gunks fall 2007
Friedrich Wolfgang Beckey, known as Fred Beckey, (born 14 January 1923) is an American rock climber, mountaineer and author, who has made hundreds of first ascents, more than any other North American climber.
- Fred beckey at the gunks fall 2007
- The mountaineers films fred beckey early climbs
- Early years
- Guidebook author
- Recent accomplishments
- First ascents
- Other notable ascents
The mountaineers films fred beckey early climbs
Beckey was born in Düsseldorf, Germany, and his family emigrated to the United States in 1925, ending up in Seattle, Washington. He started climbing in the North Cascades as a teenager around age thirteen, learning the basic concepts from the Boy Scouts and later, The Mountaineers but quickly going on to harder climbs on his own. He managed to continue this focus on climbing for more than seventy years and has become an icon in North American mountaineering.
He attended the University of Washington and received a degree in business administration. He entered the printing industry and soon discovered that his work assignments encroached upon his climbing goals. He eschewed the printing industry to gain more climbing time. He worked as a delivery truck driver, which left him time for climbing. As time went on, he decided that climbing was his life's focus. He never married or had children, he never pursued a professional career, he never sought money or financial security as a goal—his goal was to climb mountains.
Unlike Jim Whittaker, a fellow Seattleite and the first American to reach the top of Mount Everest in 1963, Beckey shied away from the large team efforts, preferring smaller alpine-style undertakings. Beckey seemed a likely choice as a member for the large, 1963 American Everest Expedition, but he was not chosen, even though he had been to Lhotse in 1955 with the International Himalayan Expedition.
A documentary film on his life, Dirtbag: The Legend of Fred Beckey, was released in 2017.
In the late 1940s, he asked The Mountaineers of Seattle to publish his first climbing guidebook for the local peaks. They turned him down, and the American Alpine Club agreed to print a few thousand copies for a flat fee. Between climbs, he has written several books, most notably the Cascade Alpine Guide, the definitive 3-volume description of the Cascades from the Columbia River to the Fraser River, now in its third edition, published by The Mountaineers.
In 2003, his 563-page book on the history of the region, Range of Glaciers, was published by the Oregon Historical Society Press. According to a reviewer, he did much of the research for the volume in Washington, D.C., at the Library of Congress and the National Archives, scouring files of the State Department, U.S. Geological Survey and other agencies. Beckey also perused the Canadian archives in Ottawa, Ontario; Hudson's Bay Co. archives in Winnipeg, Manitoba; British Columbia archives in Victoria, British Columbia; records of the Northwest Boundary Survey at Yale University; and records of the Northern Pacific and Great Northern railroads in Minneapolis.
As of June 2013, he continues to climb.
Mount Beckey, named for Beckey, is located in the Alaska Range at North 62 degrees, 52 minutes, West 152 degrees, 15 minutes.
Some of his first ascents:
Other notable ascents
Timothy Egan captures Fred Beckey's personality in a chapter of The Good Rain. Beckey named Vasiliki Ridge, by Washington Pass, after his one true love. Beckey is a quintessential dirtbag climber, and there is a classic portrait of him holding a sign "Will belay for food." His reputation is well-known among many climbers, captured in a T-shirt "Beware of Beckey: He will Steal your woman, steal your route."