• Life is an Inherently Dangerous Sport

    Been a while since I’ve posted here, but this is a piece I’m particularly proud of from my main blog Dreaming of Gnar:   Once again I find myself out visiting my favorite routes, enjoying the day, cranking the tunes through my earbuds, occasionally singing along out of tune to the amusement or dismay of those nearby, when someone suddenly yells at me “Get down from there! You have so much to live for!” Yes, I know. I’m doing it right now. I am a free soloist, and I’m not the only one. Climbing is inherently dangerous. We mentally hit “I accept” every time we see the big red warning in a guidebook or climbing gym, but it never feels Read More

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    PILE ZE BAGS!!!!!!!

    I’m in Nashville Tennessee now, fresh off the best going away “party” I could ever have hoped for, and am sitting here in my hotel room with some time to kill. I’d like to give a shout out to all the great friends I met in Atlanta, and now seems like a good time to put do that and finally write down my favorite climbing story… I was in The Needles of Sylvan Lake (in South Dakota), and the climbing was the scary old-school type of climbing that I love. Manky pitons, scant pro, and the only use for my #5 Camalot was as a counterweight to keep the sling I’d draped over a knob from blowing away in the Read More

  • The New Normal

    Six. Weeks. Six Weeks. Six weeks gone, carving a living out of the sky itself, defying the ire of gravity by the hour, and cursing the sun’s lazy attitude. That fool has a bad habit of quitting before we’re finished. I guess it sounds rather interesting when you word it like that, but to me it’s just another day, and another dollar. Another cell tower climbed, rigged, and ready. Except for this day. This day is Friday. And not just any Friday, this Friday I get to go home. Ugh, I get to go home? now? Who’s idea was this? Right. Mine. fool. I’ve been up since 5am, we just put in a 12.5 hour day, and the schedule says Read More

  • Not your typical pro-climber

    I’ve always dreamed of becoming a professional climber, traveling the country, living out of the back of my truck, and climbing in whatever crag I happen to find in my vicinity, but I truly understood that I wasn’t strong enough to pull it off… and I have never been so happy to be wrong! 6:30 AM Time to load up in the truck and pick up the rest of the crew. Don’t be late. You will be left behind. If you don’t feel like climbing today we don’t need you. It’s bitterly cold, damp, and dark, but as many have said before me: “this IS what we came here for… right?”   7:30AM Everybody is in the truck, it’s time Read More

  • This post was created Free and Solo

    The wind, the rock, the flow… it’s pure meditation. Hand over hand dancing the feet upward, slogging from one positive Hueco to the next, flowing through 250 feet of nearly vertical rock, pausing every so often to admire the view, the position, the exposure, completely rope-less. It’s not exhilarating. It’s relaxing, surreal,  and a huge relief to be running laps on one of my favorite multi-pitch boulder problems in the universe: “Sea of Holes” 5.10-   Does that make me a bad person?       I just got back from Hueco and had my mandatory “Victory Scotch.” I have a very special bottle of scotch, and I’m only allowed to pour one shot out of it for each time Read More

  • No Fear of Flying

    In all honesty, I easily could be dead, and probably should be paralyzed. Above all other things I have to say, I love sharing this story in the hopes that it will help others tame the mental monsters on the sharp end. The Back-Story (pun not intended, but thoroughly appreciated): About 2.5 years ago, I whipped off of my project and was dropped 35ft to the ground by my former climbing partner at my local gym. His hands had been completely removed from the rope when I fell. Those short couple seconds of air time were the only time in my life that I felt with absolute sure certainty that I was about to die. We climbed together frequently, and Read More

  • Variety and Periodization

    “The hardest part of training is making the decision to start” - Wolfgang Gullich - My quote of today Motivation plays a huge part in training, and many stop training or never begin due to boredom or the fear of becoming bored. It’s simply not exciting enough. Training is often viewed as monotonous and perhaps a bit more grueling than most of us climbers are willing to commit to. Inroducing “Spaz Training” It’s not the most inspiring title, but it sums things up well. When it comes to training, I’ve discovered that I’m a bit of a spaz… I get bored with my training frequently and it seems that I have a new plan every week, which has led to Read More