Bev Johnson Stories


Discussion Topic

Return to Forum List
Post a Reply
Messages 41 - 60 of total 84 in this topic << First  |  < Previous  |  Show All  |  Next >  |  Last >>

Social climber
May 12, 2012 - 04:07am PT
hey there say, tom.... oh myyyyyyyyyyy....
seems like things were near ready to be the 'better situation'...
(as to the plane)...

thanks for sharing... sad note, though, that it was...
mouse from merced

Trad climber
merced, california
May 12, 2012 - 05:06am PT
Are there successful Texas vintages you have tried, Mrs. Neebee? It's Friday, Saturday morning on the Taco, and I have wine in me.

Is Texas wine worthy of more praise than Calif.ornia wine?

Was Tricky Dick worthy of more praise than LBJ?

They are both trick questions.
The trick is to ignore them.

Bev is my daughter's nickname, now you know. But she is Bevin. Loosely put into words, Bebbin, the original spwwlling (Irish, what else?), means "melodious lady."

The Irish in me says it means "The girl who sang so beautifully the wild birds stopped to listen." She is no rock climber, but she is a lawyer. It is too bad she is not a litigator. For that matter, it's too bad she's not a pro golfer. Lots more recognition and mo' money.

Beverly, though, she towered over everybody else who had breasts, even the Vulgarian Digest cover girl, Elaine Matthews. I can't see our Bev flaunting, however. The photo of Pingora in the background did not detract from Elaine's cover shot, in all fairness. I don't mean that any body should infer that Bev's rack was in any way different. Aw nuts! You know what I meant.

They tell us Bev did not consider herself a spokesperson or a leader in the cause of the womenfolk. True, but there is only a mere generation or two of women who do and will see her as such, simply because of her firsts.

I wish upon the stars who've gone--
Who knows where--
That they would tell us that they care,
That what we say, and write, and share
Means anything in thin, cold air.
-Willi U in Me

Say hi to Beverly from me;
And to the Dolt....can't hurt.

Neebee, here's a bouquet for Mothers Day. Yaller roses from me and Stevie Ray.

Social climber
May 12, 2012 - 06:11am PT
hey there say, mouse from merced...

fast thread drift:

did not know much about texas... just south texas, :)
a place unique'ly all its own...

*thank you for the early mother's day notation, and may
god bless you and your home, and thank you for sharing, as to your bev...

drift done... :)

*made a good bump, for bev stories, for this weekend :)
mouse from merced

Trad climber
merced, california
May 12, 2012 - 06:17am PT
Bumps are what Bevs love best. But that can change like Texas weather.
Have a heavenly weekend.

Mountain climber
May 12, 2012 - 12:16pm PT
I meet Bev in Yosemite Valley in 1978 while climbing with John Fischer. She was getting ready for her solo of the Dihedral Wall and everyone thought that it would be a cup of tea for her . I mentioned it to my friend Bill Stall of the Los Angeles Times and the next day she was on the newspaper's front page and national television ! Bill was also a climber and AAC editor .
Don Lauria

Trad climber
Bishop, CA
May 25, 2012 - 02:05am PT
Sometime between April of 1966, when we opened our first little 600 sq. ft. store on Pico Boulevard, and September of 1969 when we expanded into our new 25,000 sq. ft. store on Olympic Boulevard, somewhere in that brief period, something wonderful happened at West Ridge Mountaineering.

Those early days at West Ridge we opened the store at 5 PM because the owners worked in aerospace from 8 to 5. We also only hired climbers to work sales. On that particular wonderful evening, I happened to be the working owner. As I recall two young climbers were also working that evening when a stunningly attractive young woman wearing an exceptionally short mini skirt entered the store.

She announced that she was a student at USC and was interested in rock climbing. She had no experience zilch. She was a student taking ballet and gymnastics. All the while, she is doing these incredible stretching exercises one leg up on the waist-high sleeping bag table, her forehead pressed to her knee. These are very vivid memories.

She wanted someone to teach her rock climbing. My co-workers that evening were crawling all over each other trying to set up lessons.

As it worked out, neither of these handsome young lads was to land the job. Instead, one of our newest employees, and one of our least experienced, a lad named Alan Roberts, happened to be working the weekend she walked in and set a date for Stoney Point. Alan Roberts was, at that time, sort of the Woody Allen of West Ridge not considered by his peers as anybody that should be teaching others to climb.

Ends up, he took her to Stoney twice and then to Tahquitz where they failed miserably on the White Maiden.

Alan went on to become a highly respected rock climber and Tuolumne climbing guide. She went on to become Beverly Johnson.

Don Lauria

Trad climber
Bishop, CA
Feb 14, 2013 - 02:40pm PT
Time for the annual bump!

Mountain climber
The Other Monrovia- CA
Feb 14, 2013 - 02:58pm PT
I would suggest that the only appropriate definition of failure on Alan Roberts'
part would have been the failure to ensure a benightment on the 'White Maiden'.

Feb 14, 2013 - 04:24pm PT
Steve Grossman

Trad climber
Seattle, WA
Feb 14, 2013 - 04:51pm PT
Great story Don!

Bev wasn't one to go unnoticed...

Trad climber
Feb 14, 2013 - 06:20pm PT

Anyone who knew Bev, whether close friend or casual acquaintance, will remember her winning smile, clever wit, and sincere persona. She has been called the Amelia Earhart of outdoor adventure. The energy that animated her body has moved to another place, but the spirit of Beverly remains an inspiration to us all, as she has been for a long time.

--Jim Bridwell
Climbing 145

I will never forget Bev Johnson. She seemed like such a free spirit, with an almost constant radiant smile. I assume many guys had a crush on her, as she was a special person.

Many speak of her climbing skill, but she was a pretty mean seamstress as well. I still have a haulbag she made for me, back in 1971. It has seen better days, but I don't have the heart to throw it out, considering the wonderful human being who made it--Bev Johnson.

Feb 14, 2013 - 07:08pm PT
I remembered running across a note about Bev Johnson in the Mt. Starr King registers. She didn't sign the book, left it to the newbie:

8/21/74 Dear old patient Beverly brought me up here for my 3rd climb. Neat experience. I can fly.
Lynn Hammond
B. Johnson

All the register entries from the begiining to 1982 are at

Sport climber
Home away from Home
Feb 14, 2013 - 07:23pm PT
this is an awesome thread.
thanks for starting it, 10b.


Sport climber
Home away from Home
Feb 14, 2013 - 07:52pm PT
I've got to B U M P this again because Politics will not over power great climbing stories/history

Social climber
So Cal
Feb 14, 2013 - 07:58pm PT
She was the subject of one of my first posts here back in 05

Only met Bev Johnson once, when a stunning woman in a meticulously pressed smoky bear outfit saw the rack in camp and told us that between 5:00 and 6:00 was a good time to go bouldering, but to try to pay at least a couple of times a week so her boss wouldn't figure out the book keeping discrepancies.
McHale's Navy

Trad climber
Panorama City, California & living in Seattle
Feb 14, 2013 - 08:00pm PT
Here's a ST link to more Bev stories;

When I came upon her halfway up the Leaning Tower she caught me by surprise. I was just rounding the corner below the Ledge (Lunch Ledge?) and I see this woman with what amounted to a see-through bra! I immediately turned my gaze to a nice looking dihedral across the way - to get my eyes uncrossed! Actually, I don't remember what my eyes did after that ( I'm sure she quickly covered up ) but we finished the climb together, but still solo, and bivied on the last ledge of the climb a pitch below the top. The most memorable thing at the ledge was thowing my rope into the void to unkink it, and when it staightened out, the end of it exploded - making the sound of a .357 going off! I saved the 8" to 10' long tassle for many years in a jar but it finally dissapeared. Bev ended up with a roll of my film from the climb that I have never seen so please if you know of the pics please contact me. I have no others from the climb.

That reminds me, I recently found another photo of her from the climb - I must have had a partial roll also - the photo must be from the last pitch, but she is looking up at me through a narrow crack - like where a crack in a dihedral goes around a corner and the eyes can take a shortcut through it, and all you can see is her eyes - I'll have to find it.

Social climber
An Oil Field
Feb 14, 2013 - 10:23pm PT
I grew up almost ten years too late to meet her in her time in the Valley.

From what I read and the pictures I can tell, I would have fallen ga ga in love with her like every other guy. I mean, the best woman climber happens to be a go for it beauty? Lynn Hill was so pretty, too. Still is, I guess. I never met her. It is really who they are that turns a girl into a beauty in your eyes.

I only fell in love once in my valley time. Life moves so fast when you are young, and I was gone so quickly. Man, that hurts.

Fortunately, when you are young, you get over it.

Seriously. I'm sorry I never met her. She sounds like she was an amazing person.

My only connection with Mike Hoover is that when I worked on movie X, we had a camera that we rented from him, and the camera operator knew him.
Steve Grossman

Trad climber
Seattle, WA
Feb 14, 2013 - 11:21pm PT
One of my favorite Bev memories is over on the TM Herbert Appreciation thread.

Trad climber
Santa Cruz Mountains and Monterey Bay
May 19, 2013 - 11:47pm PT
hard to deal with the loses

Bev Johnson told me a few days before the helicopter crash:

In our last conversation we were commiserating about losing one of our friends on an Alaskan Peak. Her comment to me as we rang off was, 'Live every day to the fullest, as you never know when it might be your last!'

Credit: TomCochrane

Ice climber
Soon 2B Arizona
Topic Author's Reply - May 20, 2013 - 10:52am PT
I am bumping this, because of what has transpired in the climbing community over the last few days.

"Live every day to the fullest, as you never know when it might be your last!"
-Bev Johnson
Messages 41 - 60 of total 84 in this topic << First  |  < Previous  |  Show All  |  Next >  |  Last >>
Return to Forum List
Post a Reply
Our Guidebooks
Check 'em out!
SuperTopo Guidebooks

Try a free sample topo!

SuperTopo on the Web

Recent Route Beta
Recent Gear Reviews