Joe Fitschen Appreciation Thread

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Sewellymon

climber
.....in a single wide......
Topic Author's Original Post - Jul 7, 2011 - 03:43pm PT
It's time for Joe's thread. I sure hope he can publish his book and soon!

But in the meantime, stories old and new?

Joe- I've a question? I recall one of the old newspaper write-ups (2nd ascent of the Nose maybe) said you lived in my hometown of Monterey Park, CA? If true, that would make you Monterey Park's 2nd most famous climber (!) I know Tony Yaniro attended grade school for a few years in Monterey Park...
ron gomez

Trad climber
fallbrook,ca
Jul 7, 2011 - 05:46pm PT

Hartouni and Fitschen
Hartouni and Fitschen
Credit: ron gomez
The legends.  Joe Fitschen, Tom Frost and Royal Robbins.
The legends. Joe Fitschen, Tom Frost and Royal Robbins.
Credit: ron gomez
A Tom Frost print so graciously signed by the three in the photo.
A Tom Frost print so graciously signed by the three in the photo.
Credit: ron gomez
Royal Robbins, Joe Fitschen, John Long, Clark Jacobs, the beautiful ho...
Royal Robbins, Joe Fitschen, John Long, Clark Jacobs, the beautiful host Janie Taylor Levy, Don Lauria, Jerry Gallwas Mike Sherrick Charlie Raymond.

Credit: ron gomez

Joe was one of those early mentors for me when I was "cutting" my ropes. Always an inspiration and a pleasure to meet with.
Peace
Gene

climber
Jul 7, 2011 - 06:03pm PT
Joe looks fit enough to do the NIAD! Does he post here yet?
Steve Grossman

Trad climber
Seattle, WA
Jul 7, 2011 - 06:55pm PT
Joe posts as "oldguy".
scuffy b

climber
dissected alluvial deposits, late Pleistocene
Jul 7, 2011 - 07:19pm PT
Joe's got some great stories.

That bivy picture above, the iconic Frost print, autographed...
Taken by Chuck Pratt.
frog-e

Trad climber
Imperial Beach California
Jul 7, 2011 - 07:21pm PT
Got to meet Joe and hang out with him and my friend Eric Beck this springs at Joshua tree. It was great; Joe is really cool guy with lots of interesting insights!

Darwin

Trad climber
Seattle, WA
Jul 7, 2011 - 10:32pm PT

Bump

ScuffyB: I forgot that was a Pratt photo. It was an important image for me in my youth, i.e. what I wanted to be when I grew up.

Good on ya, Joe.
Jan

Mountain climber
Okinawa, Japan
Jul 7, 2011 - 11:20pm PT

I'm glad to see the photo of Janey Taylor. She had legendary status by the time I arrived in the Valley but I never met her.
drljefe

climber
El Presidio San Augustin del Tucson
Jul 7, 2011 - 11:33pm PT
Hey Joe-

Knew your son in Prescott. Heckuva climber in his own right.
After he split there were some
"I dunno, I think Fitschen did it" problems.
I worked hard and got the 2nd on one. Named it Gunshy.
Tell him Jefe says Hi!

Would love to hear more "oldguy" stories.
couchmaster

climber
pdx
Jul 8, 2011 - 12:23am PT
I'm glad to see the photo of Janey Taylor. She had legendary status by the time I arrived in the Valley but I never met her.

Are we going to have to beg for Janey stories too? LOL

Bring on the Joe and janey stories!!!!!!
oldguy

climber
Bronx, NY
Jul 31, 2011 - 06:41pm PT
I didn't live in Monterey Park; my mother did at the time. I lived in Camp 4 and then in Curie Co. housing for the winter.

That Darwin wanted to be like one of the climbers in Pratt's photo--it must be Frost unless Darwin aspired to total depravity.

Yeah, Jason was good--won a competition in Tuscon I think and did some hairy multi-day in Mexico-- Trano?

And there is also a Fitschen's Folly in the Gunks. No one wanted to follow it after I led it (short, unprotected). Note that I didn't name either climb and have sometimes wished that my name didn't begin with "F"
donini

Trad climber
Ouray, Colorado
Jul 31, 2011 - 07:10pm PT
Haven't seen Joe since I ran into him in Moab ten or more years ago. Guided with him at Exum in the 70's. Great guy with amazing, piercing blue eyes.
Cragman

Trad climber
June Lake, California....via the Damascus Road
Jul 31, 2011 - 07:30pm PT
I had the priviledge of meeting Joe last fall in the Valley...truly a fine man.

TomCochrane

Trad climber
Santa Cruz Mountains and Monterey Bay
Jul 31, 2011 - 09:32pm PT
when i first met Joe and Royal in the Tetons in the early 60s; he was the first guy i'd met who could scramble up a scree slope as fast as me

he seemed to be a poet-philosopher constructed of steel springs and piano wire

my parents thought i went to Occidental College because of the famous violin professor who gave me a scholarship

they never realized it was really because Joe was also a student and had told me about Tahquitz Rock and Camp 4 lore

Joe probably never realized how much he had influenced my life

Dick Erb

climber
June Lake, CA
Aug 1, 2011 - 12:59am PT
I have enjoyed knowing Joe over the years. I remember a very enjoyable summer day in the North Cascades climbing the NE Ridge of Mt. Triumph with Joe and Charlie Raymond.
Here is one of John Scurlock's excellent photos showing the ridge between sun and shadow in winter conditions.
Mt. Triumph in winter
Mt. Triumph in winter
Credit: John Scurlock
rottingjohnny

Sport climber
mammoth lakes ca
Aug 1, 2011 - 01:53am PT
Did Joe ever live in Loosenville ( Susanville) ?
Dick Erb

climber
June Lake, CA
Aug 1, 2011 - 12:06pm PT
Joe taught English at Lassen College in Susanville for many years.
Rockin' Gal

Trad climber
Boulder
Aug 1, 2011 - 12:47pm PT
Not only a great climber, but an ace NYT crossword solver!
T Hocking

Trad climber
Redding, Ca
Sep 29, 2012 - 07:05pm PT
Bump for my English teacher at Lassen C.C. (Susanville, Ca.) 76-78

He turned me on to the Robbins Route at Pigeon Cliffs, I think I nabbed the 2nd ascent in 77, and 2 FA's there also.

Also told me about a granite formation just south of Thompson Peak that he spied from the road near Janesville. Nabbed many FA's at a place now known as Toms Thumb.

Thanks for the education Joe!
Tad
Patrick Oliver

Boulder climber
Fruita, Colorado
Sep 29, 2012 - 07:39pm PT
Yes Joe is one of the real ones, the authentic article
and had that great blessing of being a central figure
in the golden age. His piece in that second Ascent
remains one of the best pieces of writing anywhere.
Naturally we have waited for the book and know it will
be another masterpiece.
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