He climbed, only to let go—and now she must follow …
Shockwaves had already reached the rock-climbing community when Carol was awakened in the night with the news of her son’s death. Chris Hampson—a well-known climber whose grace, warmth, commitment, and Zen-like focus inspired many friends—had fallen to his death in Yosemite National Park.
This moving memoir tells how a mother, seeking to understand her son’s passion and confronting deep questions of mortal life, learns to climb up from despair. She had always believed that to encourage her children’s freedom was the greatest gift she could give. But now that belief is shaken. Grasping for ground, struggling to accept his passing, she discovers a remarkable truth: love transcends time and space. You never really lose who you love.
The first anniversary of Chris’s death is marked by Carol’s pilgrimage to Yosemite where, among perennial climbers and granite gods, she scatters his ashes and begins to release him.