Formed in the early days of World War II, the Tenth Mountain Division was one of the most unusual units in the United States Army. Its men, many of them former ski champions and mountaineers, were rigorously trained for a special kind of combat. They were taught the techniques of warfare in deep mountain snows, learned to backpack equipment into rugged terrain and to scale cliffs with the dexterity of Alpine guides. When they went at last into combat, in the mountains of Italy in 1944, they were able to break through the German "Gothic Line," rout Marshal Kesserling's forces, and speed the end of the war in Europe. In this lively book we follow the men of the Tenth from their early days of training in Colorado and Texas, share their jokes and hardships, and finally watch them prove themselves in combat. Drawing on interviews with veterans of the Tenth, and on his own experience as a skier and climber, Curtis Casewit has written a vigorous and exciting account of a remarkable group of men.