Life Lived Wild: Rick Ridgeway

On today’s episode of The Firn Line, we’ll get to know legendary mountaineer, outdoor adventurer, author and conservationist, Rick Ridgeway.  I first learned about Rick back in the early 90’s, when I read his mountaineering classic, The Last Step, which details the 1978 first American ascent of K2.  Rick was an early hero of mine, as I admired his tenacity, grit and determination in the mountains.  But it turns out, the world’s high peaks we’re just one chapter in Rick’s life: a life that’s been filled with adventure, catastrophe, enduring love, and heart-wrenching loss.  

A few months ago, I caught wind of Rick’s new memoir,  Life Lived Wild, which came out via Patagonia Books on October 26th.  The book describes the many adventures in Rick’s life –  everything from a gripping stay in a vicious Panamanian jail at 24 years old, to one of his closest companions dying in his arms on a remote Chinese mountain, to traverses in remote regions of Tibet and Borneo, to the windswept and frigid summits of Antarctica.  After finishing the book, I finally understood why Rolling Stone magazine once dubbed Rick, ‘the real Indiana Jones’.  

This last fall, I was fortunate to catch up with Rick when we talked for almost 3 hours over the course of two separate interviews.  It would be impossible to cover Rick’s whole life in such a short amount of time, so we talked mostly about his early years.  At the end of it, I was left mesmerized by Rick’s stories – but more importantly, I was touched by his honesty, his humor, his grace, and his enduring wisdom. 


Written & Produced by Evan Phillips
Editing & Sound Design by Pod Peak
Original Music by Evan Phillips & Tim Easton

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A Conversation With David Lama


On today’s episode of The Firn Line, we’ll get to know world-renowned and visionary alpinist, David Lama.

The son of Nepalese and Austrian parents, David was was born with an affinity for movement over natural terrain, and a deep reverence for the high places. As a youngster, Lama excelled at indoor and sport climbing, dominating the competition circuit, and honing his rock climbing skills to the highest standards.
But eventually, a natural progression to the mountains occurred – which has culminated in a multitude of ground-breaking ascents in Patagonia, The Himalaya and beyond.

I recently got a chance to sit down with David in Anchorage, Alaska – to have a candid conversation about his life as a climber, and the vision he follows as an alpinist. We talked about everything, from his early days as a competition climber, to a life-changing experience on the southeast ridge of Cerro Torre, to his meaningful relationship with fellow climber and friend Conrad Anker, to the limitless ideas and projects that lie ahead.

We started our conversation by talking about David’s natural inclination to climb as a youngster, and how a fateful meeting with famous Austrian mountaineer, Peter Habeler, helped steer the trajectory of David’s life – from the confines of rock gyms, to the limitless arena of the mountains.


• Lonely Mountain / Evan Phillips / Silhouettes (2015)
• I Come Alive / Evan Phillips / Cabin Vibes • Volume One (2018)
• Hard Times / Evan Phillips /Cabin Vibes • Volume One (2018)


David Lama
Evan Phillips
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