Grand Controversy

Pioneer Climbs in the Teton Range and the Controversial First Ascent of the Grand Teton

  • 458 pages
  • American Alpine Club
  • 978-0-930410-45-2
  • Oct 31, 1997

Paperback / softback

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* Includes 73 historic black-and-white photos
* Thoroughly researched, authoritative account of the controversy
* Includes the story of legendary Paul Petzoldt's ascent

In 1872, James Stevenson and Nathaniel Langford claimed they had made the first ascent of the Grand Teton; however, they failed to leave a cairn or mark on the summit to prove their success. The second team claiming the summit in 1893 made the same error. So when Bill Owen summited in 1898 he claimed the first ascent and from that time on he controlled and shaped the mountain's history. The Grand Controversy is the story of the remarkable beginnings of Teton climbing, its pioneer era, and its fascinating, long unsettled controversy: Who really climbed the Grand Teton first?


  • 458 pages
  • American Alpine Club
  • 978-0-930410-45-2
  • Oct 31, 1997

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