Did you have an "OUTDOOR UPBRINGING" ?


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Big Wall climber
A Token of My Extreme
Jan 24, 2010 - 12:29pm PT
Jefe Bump!

Here's to an outdoor upbringing!


Trad climber
North Carolina
Jan 24, 2010 - 12:57pm PT
I kinda do and kinda don't.

My Mother wasn't into outdoor anything, wouldn't have dreamed of going camping or anything. My Dad was an outdoorsman but except for a few hunting trips he was pretty much absent when I was little.

But... I grew up less than a mile from Shades Crest, a long 80' to 120' sandstone escarpment that stretches for several miles. I scrambled and explored there by myself for years until I met some guys who were learning to climb. I joined them and we climbed together all over the Southeast until I was 23 when I got into whitewater paddling.

So I'm a outdoors type for sure... but not really because of my upbringing... more like location and a love for wild places.
Peter Haan

Trad climber
San Francisco, CA
Jan 24, 2010 - 01:15pm PT
Jefe, retouched as best as I can with the tiny web files; your slides scanned in hires
TIFFs will produce much better fixes.

Credit: Peter Haan
Credit: Peter Haan

Jan 24, 2010 - 02:59pm PT
I had zero outdoorsiness contribution any sort of parenetal units...

I did spend a chunk of my childhood in Westchester County NY. I think one of the most influential & formative events was reading Jean George's My Side of the Mountain in elementary school & going over to her house every now & then to visit her & her meagierie. The most appealing thing about Sam (the main character) to me, back when I was a kid as well as now, was his self sufficiency.

Toker Villain

Big Wall climber
Toquerville, Utah
Jan 24, 2010 - 03:14pm PT
Is there a better way?

The first deer I saw was through the scope of my dad's rifle resting on the living room window sill.
I grew up in the forest of New England, and was accustomed to listening to the birds before rising.

We wandered through the woods, and in the winter skated on a nearby pond.

How shallow must life be if not exposed to the beauty of nature while young?

Social climber
Across Town From Easy Street
Jan 24, 2010 - 03:28pm PT
Yes indeed! Hippy parents, lived pretty much off the grid from ages 2-5, 7-12...



1973 (with my woodpile):


photo not found
Missing photo ID#142492

Big Wall climber
Seattle, WA
Jan 24, 2010 - 03:37pm PT
Pappy took us into the snowy woods when I was five and showed us how to find dry wood and build a fire. The best part was peeing on it to put it out. Now I'm a pyro with a pee fetish.
Doug Robinson

Trad climber
Santa Cruz
Jan 24, 2010 - 04:49pm PT
OK, BASE 104, you win.

You guys SO narrowly escaped another one of my family-camping-on-the-shore-of-Tenaya-Lake stories.

But hey, who needs tales of pup-tents-to-the-wild-Tuolumne, when we can be livin' large in legend? I'm here to tell ya, I taught that BASE dude everything he knows 'bout rasslin' wolverines. Don't see those suckers around anymore, now do ya?

Trouble with your other idea, though, 104, is that the ashes of your sac alone would fill that cave...

Besides, in another century the place'll be overrun by nano-tube-gecko-boot weenies just down from soloing the headwall. They ain't worthy to piss on your ashes.
Toker Villain

Big Wall climber
Toquerville, Utah
Jan 24, 2010 - 06:56pm PT
We need a link to that story about the germans camping in the meadows.

Ricky D

Trad climber
Sierra Westside
Jan 24, 2010 - 10:59pm PT
I was raised by wolves.

Does that count?
Scared Silly

Trad climber
Jan 24, 2010 - 11:34pm PT
I think my outdoor upbringing started off with something with the following:

"Get out of the house and don't come back until dinner"

Actually I made my first trip to the valley when I was 2 ... been sleeping in the dirt for over 40 years now.

Social climber
So Cal
Jan 24, 2010 - 11:41pm PT
My dad was foreman at the Seven Oaks NFS station in the San Bernardinos.
The house was a log cabin.

Almost had a pet rattlesnake at two years old, but Grandma cut his head off with a shovel.

I've been told my first word was Star.

That was my dad's favorite pack mule.
Spider Savage

Mountain climber
Jan 24, 2010 - 11:43pm PT
Hell yes. In North Idaho there's nothing happening indoors. I had good outdoor parents. Hiking and camping was what you did for leisure.

Now I live in Los Angeles. In addition to making sure my kids and all their friends had plenty of outdoor experience I volunteer frequently as a Boy Scout leader taking kids out all the time. Sad thing is that more and more, kids are more interested in computer generated adventure.


Boulder climber
Jan 24, 2010 - 11:50pm PT
my dad used to get drunk and take me out behind the woodshed and give me an awful whoopin, bum phillips style,

"discipline, for disciplin's sake, boy,"

now if that ain't country, i don't know what is,

hey, thats jus a funin,

don't want dad givin me the stank eye when i get to hell,

Social climber
Jan 24, 2010 - 11:51pm PT
hey there drljefe... say, what a neat topic here... neat pics, too, everyone...

say, our mom was able to grow up on ohio property, her home, built on and with the woods... they had a neat pond... put in, i think, by her dad... yep---outdoors, she was... taught to her by her dad...

her sis, too, the aunt that died falling through the ice, just recently:
she got her place in the woods, too.. and the same dad, when he was still alive, helped her did THAT pond, too...

the woods are since gone from the growing-up-home that they all have, but the pond is left...

the woods of that land taught them all well....

she moved to san jose, when we were 4-5? (chappy and me) (and the others were babies, and some, yet to be born)...

well, our dad was not that big a fan of the greatoutdoors, but he did hike with friends that loved to do it.. and did take us camping on occasions:
thus, we never forgot it, and took-off for the great outdoors, as our mom had even had a heart for....

sure was in us, for whatever mixture of reasons... even the few that have to live in the city, have found a way to have a place in the greatoutdoors... right now, i am a mite stuck, but i did have a bit of it in texas, for a little while---an old run down place, just out of town:

raised our kids there, before they were full grown,and the place fell apart and we rescued by having to move into town (though still near the openness of texas, being it was a small town)...

and yep:
now our kids love the greatoutdoors...

and here in michigan, the grandkids are starring right up, with camping trips and outdoor sports...

:) and i am SO VERY glad for it....

thanks mom... :)
and thanks to dad, who did take us, even when he was not too keen on it...
we will NEVER forget.. and are even now passing this love for critters, trees, mountains, streams, and all the etc.... (yep, rocks, too)...
on down the line...

if i can find some pics... will post some tomoorrow...

say, i just now remembered jody and how he shared about his dad, and the ranger? days... great outdoors stuff...
Ricky D

Trad climber
Sierra Westside
Jan 24, 2010 - 11:51pm PT
"Sad thing is that more and more, kids are more interested in computer generated adventure."

Do what I do when I take youngun's into the wilderness...

I tell them that Cheetos grow wild for the picking on some special trees.

But we will have to walk a while to get to them.

It's an adventure coming and going.

Did I mention that kids now hate me?

Social climber
Jan 24, 2010 - 11:55pm PT
hey there ricky d... say, as to this quote..
Do what I do when I take youngun's into the wilderness...

I tell them that Cheetos grow wild for the picking on some special trees.

But we will have to walk a while to get to them.

It's an adventure coming and going.

sounds like the tactics one of my sons used recently, in another field...
*think their kids DO like the greatoutdoors... it is supper that is sometimes that hard adventure... :)

A long way from where I started
Jan 25, 2010 - 12:07am PT
It's odd, really, that my father put so much effort into introducing me to the wilderness when he wasn't really all that "outdoorsy" himself. Or at least not in the yuppie way we use the term now. He grew up dirt poor on a farm in northern Canada and came of age just in time for the great depression. But by the time War II was over and he'd settled down and started a family he was doing okay. My mother was a city girl, and really wasn't interested in what the dirt had to offer, but my dad really did make it a priority to give me as much of the outdoors I could handle.

Dunno if it backfired, or what. But by the time I was fifteen I was a paddling bum. Which changed to mountain bum once I discovered the mountains. But I am forever thankful for what he gave me.
Fishing at age 11 or so
Fishing at age 11 or so
Credit: Ghost
Taking mom, dad, and sis on a wilderness trip
Taking mom, dad, and sis on a wilderness trip
Credit: Ghost


Trad climber
Morgan Hill, CA
Jan 25, 2010 - 10:42am PT
We were always outdoors.

Dad was a field topographer for the USGS in the western states. We typically moved twice a year to tiny towns in the middle of nowhere. I attended something like 26 different schools. Places like Island Park Idaho, Rosette Utah, Gila Bend Arizona, and John Day Oregon.

When out of school I spent time with dad driving 4WD into the boonies, lugging theodolites to the tops of peaks and hiking out trails while marking them on aerial photos with pinholes.

Dad grew up in Fernwood Idaho and joined the Air Corps late in WW2. He served in Egypt and India. After college he worked on the Alaskan Highway before joining USGS.

He did a stint in Antarctica as navigator (by sun and stars) on a surface expedition. He has a mountain range named after him down there.
Dad, Ellsworth Land, Antarctica, 1962
Dad, Ellsworth Land, Antarctica, 1962
Credit: Banquo

Trad climber
Slartibartfasts Newest Fjiord
Jan 25, 2010 - 02:11pm PT
Dad was absolutely the best when it came to being in the woods. I had my first trap line when I was 8. Sold the pelts for gas to put into my dirt bike. Dad wanted to settle in CO after the Marines but mom said no deal. Compromise was a month every summer to climb and fish. Mom was no slouch either. Taught me how to shoot well enough to go on to USMC Scout/Sniper. Also a semi-pro water skier way back in the day. All said my folks were the best. Miss 'em both every day.
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