Bradford Washburn dies at 96

by Mick Ryan Mountain cartographer, photographer and explorer Bradford Washburn died January 10, 2007, of heart failure in a retirement home in Lexington, Massachusetts. He was 96. Born in Boston, MA, in 1910, he began exploring New Hamphire´s White Mountains with an ascent of Mount Washington´s Tuckerman Ravine, in 1921. He graduated to the Alps in his teens on a family holiday. He made many first ascents and from an early age he was a keen photographer and pioneered aerial mountain photography in the Alps, the Himalaya and particularly Alaska, creating some of the most spectacular images of World´s mountains. He was a close friend of Ansel Adams whom he met through the Sierra Club. He was director of Boston´s Museum of Science for 40 years, was inducted into the Explorer´s Club at age 20 and was a member of the National Geographical Society. A celebration of Bradford Washburn´s life and work can be seen in Bradford Washburn: Mountain Photography by Antony Decaneas published by the Mountaineers Books (website). His wife, Barbara Washburn, was the first woman to climb Mt. McKinley, Alaska. You can view a gallery of Bradford Washburn´s images here at Outside.