I figured I should add some links to my blog since so much of what I learned about climbing is from the internet. That sounds terrible and stupid, I know, but its true. There is a ton of good information out there and as long as you assess it objectively and logically before using it you should be good. Heck, even guide books always start with the disclaimer about unverified information and errors. A lot of these sites also helped me find great partners and get stoked to go do things I otherwise would not have considered.
Great for Washington Cascades in particular, the trip reports are awesome with some really influential climbers posting first ascents and significant repeats. Their blog has some great advice on gear and technique.
I am a member of the AAC. I don't use the website that often but if you are a climber (in particular an alpine climber) you would be an idiot not to join. The rescue insurance, publications and grants are well worth it.
Other climbers blogs:
http://colinhaley.blogspot.com/ and his new site http://www.colinhaley.com/
If you don't know who this is... well whatever. All his major trips/climbs since '08, go read the ones where he is soloing in Patagonia. His analysis of his crevasse fall in spring 2013 is also worthwhile.
Wayne has been new-routing and climbing amazing routes in the Cascades for a long time. His blog has beta for some obscure but amazing climbs, plus great charts and lists that are worth a peak.
Scott Bennett's blog (and his sometime partner Blake's below) contains some great tips on gear and technique despite plugging his sponsors here and there. Check out his post on simuling and short-fixing.
Blake Herrington is a great free climber who travels all over and does some amazing stuff. He writes professionally for various publications and shares a lot of great ideas for being light, fast and improvisational; plus lots of route beta for Cascades rock climbs.
www.summitpost.org/ and http://mountainproject.com/ have good preliminary data but are fully user created. There is a lot of useful stuff but many idiots spray BS everywhere. Take it with a grain of salt.
http://caltopo.com/map.html is a Google Maps powered tool developed by SAR in California. If you are still trying to use ACME, Google or anything else for the outdoors you are wasting your time. Check it out!
There are tons of free topos out there. Search and you will be rewarded. Can't find anything? Email the guy who put the route up on Mountain Project or search the AAJ archives (another reason to join the AAC) and find the first ascent report. Search for aerial photos of the area like those of John Scurlock http://www.pbase.com/nolock, or Bradford Washburn if you're headed to Alaska.
Mountaineering: Freedom of the Hills by the Mountaineers in Seattle, is your
one-stop shop for know-how.
Extreme Alpinism by Mark Twight (also
published by Mountaineers) balances the traditional approach in Freedom,
but it's out of date so check it against recent online articles.
Training for the New Alpinism by Steve House and Scott Johnston is a phenomenal comprehensive manual.
Guidebooks for the PNW:
The Cascade Alpine Guide (3 volumes) by Fred Beckey are the most complete for the Washington Cascades but lack hard new test pieces.
Selected Climbs of the Cascades (two volumes) by Jim Nelson and Peter Potterfield offers a smaller selction of high quality climbs.
Oregon High by Jeff Thomas is way out of date but the only decent text and a good starting point for all the Oregon Cascades.
Mt. Hood Climber's Guide by Bill Mullee, and a host of local hardmen and women, is brand new and has many of the excellent routes on Mt. Hood (Oregon's most accessible alpine playground), including many hard technical routes.
Kiss or Kill by Mark Twight
Beyond the Mountain by Steve House
While approaching the mountains with caution is always wise, there are many things that a cautious traditional approach will deny you. By reading about what those on the cutting edge do, you open your mind to the possibilities, whether in your own backyard or on far-away mountains.