Most influential article(s)?


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beneath the valley of ultravegans
Topic Author's Original Post - Oct 18, 2005 - 12:21am PT
Time to dust off your dog-eared copies of Mountain, Schlock and Vice, and High. What have been the "essential" readings of your time climbing?

Big Wall climber
Oct 18, 2005 - 12:31am PT

The Only Blas-Phony.

Classic. Tobbins car blowing up.

The time it takes a butterfly wing.

The Rolling Stones - Valley Boys

Ed Hartouni

Trad climber
Livermore, CA
Oct 18, 2005 - 12:33am PT
The 1972 Chouinard Equipment Catalog by far and away:

it influenced my rock climbing, ice climbing, alpine, etc....
Russ Walling

Social climber
Oct 18, 2005 - 12:35am PT
"States of the Art"

Juanito, you should go read this again. It will help you with your quest for a clean lead of Double Cross.

Big Wall climber
Oct 18, 2005 - 12:42am PT
Anyone have that photo of Lynn hanging off the Innsomnia Jug?

Oct 18, 2005 - 12:54am PT
Ed I read a passage from That "1972 Chouinard Equipment Catalog"

Interesting ........

Equally serious is a moral deterioration. Armed with ever more advanced gadgetry and techniques the style of technical climbing is gradually becoming so degraded that elements vital to the climbing experience - adventure and appreciation of the mountain environment itself - are being submerged. Siege tactics, bolt ladders, bat hooks, bash chocks, detailed topos and equipment lists, plus a guaranteed rescue diminish rather than enhance a climb.

Even now existing techniques and technology are so powerful that almost any climb imaginable can be realized, and the fear of the unknown reduced to rote exercise.
Ed Hartouni

Trad climber
Livermore, CA
Oct 18, 2005 - 12:57am PT
yes Werner, I read that in 1972 and it deeply affected the way I thought about climbing, and still do...

I have the copy that was mailed to me free upon a request to Chouinard Equipment. Amazing that they stayed in business as long as they did.

Oct 18, 2005 - 01:04am PT
That was a very good catalog. And I found the pack that Bev Johnson was making back in the day.

The Jensen Pack.

Mine lasted till the eighties

Trad climber
San Luis Obispo, CA
Oct 18, 2005 - 02:31am PT
The only climbing article I've ever read that's affected my life was written about Largo and it was just a little blurb by him, but since then it's affected my life and thought processes a great deal - but has nothing to do with climbing. Does that count?

misty of the mountain

Social climber
San Dimas, California
Oct 18, 2005 - 02:34am PT
Yea it probably counts.... but what was it about and how did it effect your "thought process"?? So I can be sure it counts!

Ice climber
Ashland, Or
Oct 18, 2005 - 02:45am PT
"Staying Alive"

Trad climber
San Luis Obispo, CA
Oct 18, 2005 - 04:01am PT
He said something off hand in the article about overachieving being an addict behavior. I'm an overachiever, so I was curious as to how it was. Thanks to the Internet I got to ask him about what he meant and the rest is history. : D Gotta read more Aalmas, and the like, though. Soon, soon . . .

It was nice finding out that the inklings I'd had about self improvement and awareness were actually something that people have organized teachings about - not alone out there in my feeling that there's more to life than action-reaction.

Sport climber
Wartburg, TN
Oct 18, 2005 - 11:17am PT
Largo. "Three Little Fish"

Jaybro. "Lucille"

For me...

Trad climber
Oct 18, 2005 - 12:02pm PT
I learned to climb by reading the Coonyard catalog. Sure changed the face of climbing. Add in Robbins' Basic and Advanced Rockcraft and one needed nothing else. I see people getting guided instruction now days and just laugh, you immediately know that they lack one of the key ingredients to be a good climber - initiative!

Social climber
flagstaff arizona
Oct 18, 2005 - 01:20pm PT
"the innocent, the ignorant, and the insecure: the rise and fall of the yosemite decimal system" -- ascent magazine, bridwell

"the whole natural art of protection" - '72 GPIW catalog, doug robinson

"state of the art" and "art of the states" -- max and mark's two-parter in mountain mag -- got a lot of people psyched to train harder...

"the guidebook problem" -- dave roberts, panel discussion in ascent magazine

"the games climbers play" -- ascent mag, lito tejada-flores

"night driving" -- mountain gazette, dick dorworth -- best essay on the lifestyle EVER.

"the only blasphemy" -- so short, seems almost tossed-off, but it still resonates quite loudly all these years later.

"brave new world" -- bridwell, mt. mag -- opened my eyes, period. rocked my world. i started doing a lot of pull-ups...

"middle cathedral commentary", mt. mag -- the best of the "commentary" series, and a seminal read that heavily influenced my love affair with all things middle cathedral.

i know i'm missing a few, but i've read each of these 100+ times, so they must mean something to me...

last, and best of all: "the greatest climber in the world", mt. magazine, i think, by bernard amy. still THE essential climbing read for me.

i know i'm missiing a few others...
John Vawter

Social climber
San Diego
Oct 18, 2005 - 01:44pm PT
The Climber as Visionary, Robinson

runners up
The Whole Natural Art of Protection, Robinson
Eleven Domes, Roper
Smiley’s Last Climb, Robin Smith
On the Profundity Trail, Doug Scott
The Messner interview in Mountain
Brave New World, Bridwell

P.S. BVB's pick Night Driving! I forgot about that one. Read it many times. What happened to Dick Dorworth?

Social climber
flagstaff arizona
Oct 18, 2005 - 01:59pm PT
Dorworth is staiil around, still writing, at leats he was as of 6 or 7 years ago.

the messner interview was titled "the murder of the impossible", and was when he coined the phrase "today's climber carries his courage in his rucksack" (referring to bolts). classic stuff. published right after he lost his toes on nanga parbat and his future as a climber was in question. little did they know...

Social climber
The West
Oct 18, 2005 - 02:29pm PT
The Innocent, the Ignorant, and the Insecure, Bridwell,1973 Ascent
-required reading for anyone doing a first ascent and rating it

The Only Blashphemy -Largo
- it enters my internal dialog every time I solo

An article in 'Off belay?' about climbing Tulgy Wood @ Devil's Tower by a guy from Duluth, he describes his own Internal dialog while climbing his biggest climb-"They died so young."
This guy got it down right!

The Diary of the Soloist Climber, Jeff Long (?) '72(?) Ascent -surreal

-Doroworth has published in Mountain Gazette in the last year or so

right near the beach, boyeee (lord have mercy)
Oct 18, 2005 - 10:25pm PT
Everyone (almost) has mentioned the '72 catalogue, but didn't this man:
write the influential article in that catalogue, on clean climbing?
Roger Breedlove

Trad climber
Cleveland Heights, Ohio
Oct 18, 2005 - 11:05pm PT
Is that Doug Robinson? Looks like the East Side.
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