In Memoriam: A BBQ/Memorial Gathering for Mark Haymond

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micronut

Trad climber
Fresno/Clovis, ca
Topic Author's Original Post - Aug 30, 2018 - 11:54am PT
Mark Haymond, Tollhouse Rock pioneer and central valley climbing icon, passed away this July. A bunch of us are gathering for a "memorial BBQ/climber gathering" to talk about the good old days, eat some food, spin slab yarns and celebrate the man who brought us Falling Star (5.8 R), Desperado (5.9), Nuts and Bolts (5.8), Platinum Plus, Strawberry Jam and other Tollhouse Classics.

If you knew Mark, or knew of him or just want to gather with local Fresno climbers for a nice evening of food and friends, we'd love to have you. Also, if you know any "old timers" who may not be on social media like FB and Insta where I posted the invite (names like Barry Chambers, Dwight Kroll, Kenny Rose, Kevin Ludwig, Krist Jensen, Mike Brennan, etc...) I would love to reach out to them. Call me or text me on my cell with any contact info.

Scott Jett
(559)974-2662

We are gathering at Danny Suvanto's house
5789 E. Park Circle Drive
Fresno, Ca 93727

Friday Sept 14th
6:00 PM

PLEASE RSVP on this thread, Instagram or Facebook so we can plan for food and beverage!!! See you there!

Mark was perhaps most famous for his ascent of Tollhouse Traverse's fi...
Mark was perhaps most famous for his ascent of Tollhouse Traverse's five crack pitches in Roller Skates back in the day.
Jeremy Ross

Gym climber
Aug 30, 2018 - 12:06pm PT
Ah man I didn't know Mark died. Only met him a few times but he was always nice.

Remember climbing a route with Cam Donnahoo next to Mark and his partner at Tollhouse. I was hanging out looking where to go, just hanging out and Cam started yelling me which way the route goes. I yelled down that I found a really good stance so was just hanging out for a minute. Then I looked down and said oh sh#t I'm standing ont the bolt lol that's why it's so good. Mark started laughing and said something along the lines of "I wasn't going to say anything! Just thought that's the way you climbed!" Lol
Climberdude

Trad climber
Clovis, CA
Aug 30, 2018 - 12:27pm PT
Scott,

I also did not know that Mark died earlier this year. I only saw him once at a Tollhouse Faceoff a few years ago, but have been very appreciative of him and his Tollhouse routes. The T-shirt image for this year's Tollhouse Face-off is his cover design from the 1976 Climber's Guide to Tollhouse Rock guide, which was a mimeographed document sold at the Robbins climbing gear shop that existed for some time in Fresno. I did not know he had designed it, but Paul Martzen told me he did it. Paul in active on here, so I hope he sees this thread. I will also let him know by e-mail as well as Dwight Kroll, Barry Chambers, and Randy Kanta.

I will definitely be at the event and will bring my copy of the previously mentioned guide. Thank you for organizing this. I will also mention him and his contributions at this year's Tollhouse Face-Off, which is October 19-21. I hope to see everyone at both events.

Mark Fletcher

Edit: I sent an e-mail message to Dwight, Barry, Randy, and Paul about the event.
T Hocking

Trad climber
Redding, Ca
Aug 30, 2018 - 12:39pm PT
Damn,
sorry to hear of this Fresno crew.
RIP Mark
My condolences to his family and friends.

Tad
Climberdude

Trad climber
Clovis, CA
Aug 30, 2018 - 03:49pm PT
Scott,

Dwight responded to me by e-mail that he will be attending. He is sorry to hear this news.
jogill

climber
Colorado
Aug 30, 2018 - 04:37pm PT
Sad news. Any particulars? (age, etc)
Lynne Leichtfuss

Sport climber
moving thru
Aug 30, 2018 - 05:01pm PT
I didn't know him personally, but my condolences and hugs all around to his loved ones, family and friends. It is increasingly difficult to lose so many beloved campfire community and I honor his passing.
mooch

Trad climber
Tribal Base Camp (Riverkern Annex)
Aug 30, 2018 - 05:15pm PT
Going to try and make this. I'll let you know by weeks end if I can or not. Here's a few shot I took while Mark and I were doing Bear Claw Headwall (5.8 A3+) on Kerkoff Dome, 10 years ago. Gonna miss Mark (aka Ropeboy) a bunch! His attitude was always positive and giving. We shared a lot of personal highs and lows throughout the years. Wish we had climbed more.


Credit: mooch
Credit: mooch
rincon

climber
Coarsegold
Aug 30, 2018 - 05:20pm PT
Mark posted this a couple of years ago:

I was climbing last year at seventy because I was still thrilled to be up on moderate multi pitch routes and enjoyed being "up there." I did not mind following young rope guns because my strength and tolerance for risk sure isn't what it used to be. Many of my friends can no longer climb because of old age and the physical gifts that come with it so I feel I have been lucky. This year I had a serious illness and may not climb again. If that is true I still think I had a good ride.
http://www.supertopo.com/climbing/thread.php?topic_id=2664374&msg=2664447#msg2664447

RIP
JEleazarian

Trad climber
Fresno CA
Aug 30, 2018 - 06:21pm PT
Count me in for the 14th. Mark was Fresno's first 5.10 climber. I love that picture of Mark and Mike Brennan, but after that, Mark ascended the route in cross country skis and ski poles. I don't think he led anything that time, though. He did lead two pitches in roller skates.

We planned on recreating a picture of Mike Caldwell and me on La Escuela taken in 1970, but Mark's heart troubles prevented that, permanently, it turns out.

Mark and Gene Drake really energized the Fresno climbing scene after moving to Fresno during the early 1970's. Now they're both gone way too soon.* We'll miss them.

John

* As I typed this sentence, I remembered a saying of my mother. She would say that people claim that "an untimely death" is a meaningless phrase. She lived to 104 and in her later years, would quip that her death would give the phrase meaning.
micronut

Trad climber
Fresno/Clovis, ca
Topic Author's Reply - Aug 30, 2018 - 07:12pm PT
Already enjoying seeing these responses. I reached out to his wife and actually tracked her down on the good old-fashioned landline telephone. She encouraged me to come by and look through some of his old gear because "It could use a good home and he would love knowing that you have it Scott..... he always called you a kid, I didn't know you were 45 years old!"


It was a real treat having her walk down memory lane with me and unload tons of this amazing old gear on me. What an honor. Party favors at the gathering maybe!

Credit: micronut

Credit: micronut

Credit: micronut

Credit: micronut

Credit: micronut

Credit: micronut

Looking forward to being a curator and good steward of this wonderful treasure.
two-shoes

Trad climber
Auberry, CA
Aug 30, 2018 - 09:25pm PT
I'm bummed to hear of Mark's death. He was always a fun person. He brought his own brand of humor, for sure. I tied in with him a few times. I used to call him from time to time. I know things weren't going well for him in recent years. I'll miss him.

Thank you Scott. I'd like to make this get together.
neebee

Social climber
calif/texas
Aug 30, 2018 - 09:31pm PT
hey there say, ... me, like lynne... did not know him, but,
give my condolences and prayers to his family and loved ones, and may
the memorial be sweetly nice for all his family and friends, and,
give new special memories... for all...
Paul Martzen

Trad climber
Fresno
Aug 31, 2018 - 08:16am PT
Thank you for posting this Scott. Last time I called him it seemed like he was doing ok.

Until he got Leukemia, he was a core part of the MetalMark morning crew. I really enjoyed climbing and hanging out with him at the climbing gym. Though we had climbed together occasionally over the years, our time together at MetalMark was really nice.

One of the local television stations did a story on athletes over 65 and interviewed Mark for the story. Maybe 4 years ago.

Mark was one of the founding members of the Fresno Big Wall Society, I believe. It was an illustrious group patterning itself somewhat off that other periodic Fresno resident, Warren Harding and his downward bound theme. While Warren usually succeeded in his Big Walls, the Big Wall Society focused more on the Downward Bound aspect of retreating from the Big Walls. If any members actually succeeded in finishing a big wall, they, at least temporarily lost their official membership. A subsequent failure on a wall was a requirement for reinstatement. At least that is the line I was fed.

Mark was a technician who worked on the big diagnostic machines in hospitals and made a good living. He had two antique restored cars that he drove regularly.

Radish

Trad climber
SeKi, California
Aug 31, 2018 - 08:20am PT
Credit: Radish
Mark was an Icon for Tollhouse Rock and all our local climbers. He wrote several Guidebooks to the area. I'm sharing just a page here. Planning on being at this event and bringing Larry Zulim and Bruce Watts.
micronut

Trad climber
Fresno/Clovis, ca
Topic Author's Reply - Aug 31, 2018 - 08:25am PT
Rene that's great. Looking forward to seeing you guys there. It's turning out to be a good group!
Paul Martzen

Trad climber
Fresno
Aug 31, 2018 - 08:38am PT
Looking at Mark's post from 2015 when he got luekemia, he states he was 70 in 2014, which puts him at 74 this year, and 10 years older than I.

He came up to the 2014 Tollhouse Face Off, but was so tired by the time he hiked to the top that he did not feel like doing any climbing. He sat at the top, resting and talking to people. A month or so later, I saw him in a wheelchair at Kaiser Hospital waiting near the pharmacy. I think they were still trying to diagnose what was going on with him. It was an effort for him to stay awake. We talked a bit and then he slept while his wife stood in the pharmacy line.
jogill

climber
Colorado
Aug 31, 2018 - 12:16pm PT
Please forgive an aside in this sober thread, but the rollerskates reminded me that a climber named Skip Green did the third flatiron in skates in the mid 1950s I think.
micronut

Trad climber
Fresno/Clovis, ca
Topic Author's Reply - Aug 31, 2018 - 12:34pm PT
John this is a celebrative thread! No apologies needed. Mark actually climbed the five pitch crack Tollhouse Traverse in complete cross country ski gear back in the day also!


Radish

Trad climber
SeKi, California
Aug 31, 2018 - 01:30pm PT
I am friends with Mark's daughter Leah. She and her sister have expressed interest in going to the event. Please add them to the list.
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