There's something invigorating about looking at badass old timey mountain-climbing photos. The audacity these athletes had to make these treks, without modern crampons, axes, and other safety gear, is, itself, breathtaking. The accoutrements of mountaineers pre-1960 just plain look cool, too. Before every other American started sporting North Face gear like it was government-issued, old-school mountaineers were schelpping up mountains wearing natural fibers; their equipment was braced with leather straps; and their steps were steadied with wooden poles. Some lady climbers even just hiked up their long skirts and got to it.
The gallery below features cool, historic mountaineering photos from the decades roughly spanning 1880-1960. These vintage mountain climbing pictures capture a simpler, less synthetic, and far more badass era in the history of the pursuit.