Gray Thompson is Professor of Geology at The University of Montana where he teaches Introductory Geology, Mineralogy, Summer Field Mapping, and graduate courses in Clay Mineralogy and Shale Petrology. He has published over 20 research papers in international journals, mostly co-authored with his students. He is also a mountaineer and professional guide with first ascents, many with Jon Turk, of peaks and routes in the Rocky Mountains, Alaska, the Yukon, Baffin Island, the Alps, the Karakoram, and the Himalayas. He has authored many articles published in international climbing magazines and journals, and has been the subject of other articles in these publications. Many of the photographs in his texts were taken by Thompson and Turk on their climbing trips and expeditions over the last eighteen years.
Jon Turk is a chemist, professional geoscience writer, and adventurer. He received his PhD in 1971, and later that year he co-authored the first environmental science college textbook in the country. In the 32 years since then, Turk has continued his career as a science writer, publishing 23 environmental and geoscience texts. His love of unspoiled environments and fascination for the wild places of this planet have also led to a distinguished career as an adventurer. He has kayaked around Cape Horn as well as the 3,000 miles between Japan and Alaska, crossed the western Gobi of Mongolia, unsupported, on a mountain bike, and was the first to ascend Lamo-she Peak (6,070 meters) in the eastern Himalayas with co-author Gray Thompson. He has written numerous magazine articles about his expeditions as well as adventure/travel books, including In the Wake of the Jomon: Stone Age Mariners and a Voyage Across the Pacific (McGraw Hill, 2005).