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February 04, 1996|CHARLES SOLOMON

DEFYING GRAVITY: High Adventure on Yosemite's Walls by Gary Arce (Wilderness Press: $24.95; 194 pp., paperback original). Arce traces the history of climbing Yosemite's rugged mountains, from John Muir and the 19th century explorers to modern climbers who use the latest high-tech equipment. Although Arce writes with affection and enthusiasm, his accounts of various first ascents may confuse nonclimbing readers.

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