West Seattle High School
Class of 1941
Fred Beckey is perhaps the most world famous West Seattle High School alumni who is not yet in the Hall of Fame. Fred is now 90 years old, living in Seattle and still going strong. If elected to the Hall of Fame, it would be splendid to have him appear in person to accept this prestigious award for a lifetime of achievement.
Fred has been featured several times in the Chinook with the most recent articles by West Seattle grads Don Nokes in 2003 and Jeanne Ossinger Douglas in 2012.
A documentary film (Direct Beckey) is in-the-works about his remarkable life story. Fred has been honored with the official naming of Mt. Beckey in the Alaskan Mountain Range after him.
An Online search yields over 65 full pages and over 700 references including major coverage on Historylink, Youtube, Wikipedia, The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal and The Seattle Times. Hundreds of articles have been written about Fred Beckey who is recognized worldwide as an author and climber extraordinaire. He has been featured on the cover of Patagonia clothing catalogs.
He is an historian who has increased the public’s appreciation for the natural environment. He has achieved enduring recognition as a lecturer and as an explorer of the Cascade Range Wilderness and ranges in Canada and Alaska.
He is recognized as the all-time world-record holder for the number of first ascents (e.g. conquering previously unconquered peaks) credited to one man.
Fred has authored multiple climbing guidebooks that are considered the bibles of the genre. The 563-page book, Range of Glaciers (Oregon Historical Society, ISBN 0-87595-243-7) is a recent highly researched scholarly work. Other books by Fred Beckey include the following:
• Cascade Alpine Guide (3 vols.) (Mountaineers Books)
• Columbia River to Stevens Pass
• Stevens Pass to Rainy Pass
• Rainy Pass to Fraser River
• Challenge of the North Cascades
• Mount McKinley: Icy Crown of North America (Mountaineers Books)
• Mountains of North America (Sierra Club)
• Darrington and Index Rock Climbing Guide (Mountaineers Books)
• Guide to Leavenworth rock-climbing areas (Mountaineers Books)
• Climber’s Guide to the Cascade and Olympic Mountains of Washington (American Alpine Club)
• Fred Beckey’s 100 Favorite Climbs in North America (Patagonia Books)
Fred Beckey was born in 1923 and his family emigrated from Europe to Seattle when he was three. He started climbing in the North Cascades as a teenager, learning the basic concepts from The Mountaineers but quickly went on to more challenging climbs. He attended the University of Washington and received a degree in business administration.
He is a veteran of the U.S. Army’s pioneering World War II ski patrol, the 10th Mountain Division. He was a member of the International Himalayan Expedition’s 1955 climb on Mt. Everest.
Please kindly give serious consideration to this legend and remarkable man for induction into the West Seattle Hall of Fame. Thank you very much.