and I bet you thought Twight was dead????

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donini

Trad climber
Ouray, Colorado
Jan 30, 2013 - 02:00pm PT
Funny how the "truth" can wear different clothes. A persons perspective is paramount in determining what they perceive as the truth. The old adage...."there are two sides to every story," comes into play.
Tarbuster

climber
right here, right now
Jan 30, 2013 - 02:12pm PT
Again, as with my EPO querry, my question about the SW face is a non sequitur. Just figured someone here might know?
nah000

Mountain climber
canuckistan
Jan 30, 2013 - 02:14pm PT
Mft: the man, the myth, and the self-righteous self-promoter.

he's put out some good information for sure. extreme alpinism when it came out was very influential to me personally. some of his writing where he lays bare his own emotional experiences are very revealing and powerful.

and as a human he's likely a decent guy: i haven't seen a bunch of negativity coming from those who've climbed with him.

that said, i personally find that the self-righteousness and self-promotion found in his writing quickly gets tiresome.

just to pick apart this latest bit of writing. it's titled "What The Cheaters Have Done To Us?".

well, the answer to this question with regards to high altitude "cheaters" is very simple: they've done nothing to us.

the logical fallacy that he uses is to equate high altitude climbing where people are not hiding that they use oxygen, diamox, with lieing on resumes, "amateur athletes lieing about accomplishments", etc. and etc.

just because he has personally decided that for him to climb with o's is not his cup of tea, doesn't make it cheating. dictionary defines cheating as "acting dishonestly or unfairly". if you're not lieing about what you've done and if you're not in an endeavour with agreed upon rules you have by definition not cheated. and thank jebus climbing still has some anarchy.

in regards to the self-promotion, it's pretty interesting that he basically wrote his own wiki page [thanks to orangesporanges for pointing this out]. and pretty interesting that his wiki page claims he "ushered in the single-push climbing movement." hmmm.... i guess that must mean that the climbs profit, lafaille, loretan and troillet [to name but a few] did in the 80's were just extended bad dreams.

regardless of all this, he's often an entertaining writer. and with the above said, i still have a lot of appreciation for a good part of the information and introspective writing he's put out there.

but the bullshit is still bullsh#t even if it's mostly due to hyperbole.
wstmrnclmr

Trad climber
Bolinas, CA
Jan 30, 2013 - 02:20pm PT
Cowpoke dead on. Goes back to what Paul started up thread about how the challenge of the game changes due to knowledge and equipment over time. Free diving like the Australian guy pushing the limits without fins or lead weights. Seems like the challenges comes full circle, using knowledge and equipment to "cheat" what the human body is capable of but then using what is gained to go back to a more human way. Honnold and Messner showing us how. Learned on gear and knowledge gained from previous history, then stripping it down to where cheating can't enter. Blowing minds on trade routes climbed by the many using what most of us use to "cheat" our way up (to take from Bruce, because we're all cheating anyway aren't we?) and turning them into a thing of beauty all over again. I think everyone here agrees that what Norgay and Hillary achieved with siege and O2 wasn't cheating and that Messner couldn't do what he did without what came before. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OsFeN_6xPsM Ironically, the things we use to "cheat" (hang dogging, equipment etc.) end up being the thing that frees us.
Tarbuster

climber
right here, right now
Jan 30, 2013 - 02:38pm PT
Roy, you were one of the people to proudly usher in rap bolting in JT, BITD, laughing arrogantly at those of us who tried to preserve the resource at the time. You made fun of me for caring so much about the SFHD being rap bolted, why the bleeding heart for Everest?

Why, because Iím just a dick Cozzy!
Iím not so invested in these arguments.

[Edit] It is just a discussion. Taking a shot at my trad climbing cred is unnecessary.
Patrick Sawyer

climber
Originally California now Ireland
Jan 30, 2013 - 02:45pm PT
Okay, I just watched this dude Garrett McNamara ride a humongous wave off of Portugal. Dude has cajones.

But, would some people consider the use of a jet ski to tow a surfer out or the use of a pony bottle in case of wiping out as cheating?


I suppose it is all in one's perspective. In the 1970s I just use to surf tiny stuff in Monterey Bay and Santa Cruz.

Would I use a jet ski and pony bottle if I tackled a 90 foot wave? Damn right, I want to live.


And what about the guy on the jet ski, he must have had some ride too.

EDIT

watched the interview with ABC/NBC/? whatever. McNamara says he wasn't scared just a rush. And he works with autistic kids teaching them how to surf. Coolaboola.
Vitaliy M.

Mountain climber
San Francisco
Jan 30, 2013 - 02:48pm PT
Just because some have climbed at 8000 meters peaks without O2 proves nothing, beyond the fact that these few are risking severe brain damage and probably would be the first to grab for a bottle if they started having problems. Jim these studs are proving nothing but the wiliness to ruin their brains, and disregard their lives, in a selfish pursuit, with no greater value than self. To use this suicidal behavior as an example that the world should follow, is nothing short of absurd.

Same could be said about Southern Belle for example, Coz.

Just because some have climbed it with X amount of bolts does not mean others have to. They are risking severe body damage/death by attempting it (and some did break their limbs trying), and probably would be the first to grab a drill (if they could) when they get off route.

Coz, craggers prove nothing by climbing runout routes but their willingness to put their life at risk, in a selfish pursuit, with no greater value than self. To use this suicidal behavior as an example that the world should follow, is nothing short of absurd.

: )
Patrick Sawyer

climber
Originally California now Ireland
Jan 30, 2013 - 03:26pm PT
Those that use every prop available....including fixed ropes to the summit, are dilettantes and not true climbers. A logical extension is that routes will become more prepared and more comfortized to accomodate more and more climbers that have the time and MONEY but not the skill and preparation such peaks should require.

Wow, Jim. Thanks for the heads up on what the future holds. So I can look forward to someday climbing the Cassin Ridge, Central Pillar of Freney, Cerro Torre and Everest VIA FERATTA. Coolaboola. Sign me up. I just have to find the money. ;-)

But I still have to shed a few pounds. Few? What an understatement.

Basically I am a coward, which is why I could never get past leading 11a/b or alpine and ice climbing in the Sierra (and Cascades - how many of you can say you were on the 'old' summit of Mt St Helens? and in high school my proudest 'send' was the Price Glacier on Shuksan), and a couple of Mexican volcanoes, but I do believe doing things in style, but again, what is the perspective of what style is?

Anyway, I have never pushed my limits because I like life, a nice hotel and a good dinner. Just can't afford the latter two.

I still have my dreams. Ama Dablam and Cho Oyu, shouldn't need oxygen, and oh yes, I have wet dreams about the Cassin Ridge. Pumori and Taweche too.

Some of the posters on this thread I envy, because, when I should have been concentrating on my climbing, I had the silly dream of becoming a football pro in Europe - at 26. Whereas some of you have gone out and pushed the limits. But I always have to remind myself... Envy is one of the seven deadly sins.

Would I use oxygen on Everest? I'd certainly would take it along, make sure the tank came back down for the dump called Khumbu Glacier, and above all, do a route, not trade, with real climbers.


EDIT

Actually my proudest send in high school (16), with my HS climbing buddy Steve Fish, was North Palisade via U-Notch after Polemonium Peak via V-Notch. But Shuksan sure was nice for a 16-year-old.

Now I am just waiting for the Via Feratta for Ama Dablam, Walker Spur and Half Dome (oops, it's already there). Okay, I'll settle for a via Feratta of HDNF, considering Snake Dike is the only thing I have done on that heap pile of... beautiful granite. (Watched a total full moon lunar eclipse after the climb on that ton of rock, party and all with other climbers).

But unless you have climbed on Mt Diablo, none of you people have anything on me. And I didn't need oxygen, but that sandstone is shitty, you need props like some tequilla and weed.

Good and safe climbing.
Tarbuster

climber
right here, right now
Jan 30, 2013 - 03:26pm PT
Thanks Coz,
I'm not back for long, this is physically painful.
I'm not chickening out either; though I know you are half joking, I just don't have that strong an opinion on the matter.
Vitaliy M.

Mountain climber
San Francisco
Jan 30, 2013 - 03:36pm PT
Couldn't agree more, if you read my story in Largo's last book, Yosemite Climbers or some such, I express the madness behind this mind set.

Basically that's what every thread about oxygen, Everest, people on Half Dome etc etc comes down to.

'Climbing is anarchy.' :)




....but we still can talk sh#t on the internetz!


*exits room, time to work*

PS: Would love to read about what you wrote in that book. Sounds interesting. There are some climbs that are very impressive for the era, and that was one of them IMO.
Don Paul

Big Wall climber
Colombia, South America
Jan 30, 2013 - 03:43pm PT
If a couple dozen people can free climb the nose, out of tens of thousands that aided it, does this make the Nose a free route now? We're all supposed to go up there and spend months hangdoging the 5.13 pitches? This is what the Nose is all about now?

At the other end of the spectrum, should Everest have thousands of meters of fixed lines, fixed ladders, with huge crowds of gumbies getting guided up? If we make the routes accessible to everyone, then what you get is the half dome cables route.

I guess my perspective would be selfish - keep the gumbies from overcrowding the route, but don't make me risk my life to do it in your style, that's too extreme for me. That's not really a middle ground though, is it.

Could clarify all this by making hard and fast rules. No O2. No haulbags - climb it in a day or get the hell off the Nose. Seems like a bad idea to me. I'd say, whatever most *climbers* can do (not guided tourists), or are trying to do, is the accepted way to do the route. Plus the ethic of minimizing fixed gear whenever possible is something that will keep the sport from drifting into mediocrity.
wstmrnclmr

Trad climber
Bolinas, CA
Jan 30, 2013 - 03:46pm PT
Patrick Sawyer...Exactly! But the use of Jet Ski's ironically has led to more and more big wave riders going back to trying to paddle into bigger waves. Much like hang dogging allowed people to experience and gain more knowledge of what is physically possible, the Jet Ski has allowed surfers to experience what it's like to ride monsters and now they have the experience to go back and try to paddle in, knowing what to expect.

I think, to go back to the OP, is to ask "What is Cheating"? Climbing (surfing, diving, flying etc.) are NOT innately human. We are not lizards. We use technology to allow ourselves to experience what we otherwise are not capable of. Hopefully, we use technology (a la Honnold, Messner) to get us closer to what we are naturally capable of but if we use any form of technology to go where we couldn't otherwise are we not "cheating" and therefore are not ALL of us cheating? And if not, does being "honest" preclude us from being cheaters? Did Twight's example of the man climbing Everest using siege tactics and O2 think he was a cheater? Would Coz think so if he climbed Everest using O2?

When game changers like Honnold and Messner change the game and that change is accepted by the players at large, is not anything short of that style, under Twight's argument, "cheating? Honnold said in his interview that climbing that route on the Sentinel wasn't hard and that he could down climb it if he had to. So now if I climb the same route using equipment and techniques used by 99.9 percent of the community, am I cheating? What is cheating/
climbski2

Mountain climber
Anchorage AK, Reno NV
Jan 30, 2013 - 04:09pm PT
So now if I climb the same route using equipment and techniques used by 99.9 percent of the community, am I cheating? What is cheating?


Cheating is breaking rules you agreed to compete by. Or lying about how you did something.

The rules themselves are arbitrary and up to the participants.

In climbing we compete mainly or usually with ourselves. Although this thread does show there is certainly a competitive group nature to the sport in various degree's and individuals. Thus why being honest about what you did helps each person define where they measure up .. to whatever degree that matters to them or others.

Some folks do cheat themselves. I have and I suppose most of us have at times. Living up to your own dreams and expectations is serious business.

What cheating yourself is?? well that's up to you to figure out.

I'm pretty damn sure it isn't about letting other folks force their own rules for you.
Patrick Sawyer

climber
Originally California now Ireland
Jan 30, 2013 - 04:27pm PT
I have cheated. On school exams (not much though), my CV/resume has one or two embellishments (truths, but still embellishments), and I have pulled on gear.

"Did you lead that free?"

"Sort of, but I pulled on some gear. But hey, I am not French, I just lived and climbed there."

wstmrnclmr

The only surfer I have met that was in the water as the same time as a great white (he presumes, but he is definite it was a shark of some sort, and big), was when he was in Bodega Bay. He said the he was scared shitless and added that he tried his best to paddle as fast and quietly to shore. He lived to tell the tale.

And I get your point about the big wave guys using ski jets to tow them.

What is cheating? Is it truth? Semantics? Bullsh#t?
wstmrnclmr

Trad climber
Bolinas, CA
Jan 30, 2013 - 04:55pm PT
climbski2...dead on! You nailed it out of the box way back when you said "honesty is the only real rule" and now refined it to only being honest to one's self. Yep. Best I can do anyway.

And Patrick...Ya man! I have been on the seen for two shark attacks to friends. Same area. Objective danger keeps us all honest and certainly trivializes these debates....
bjj

climber
beyond the sun
Jan 30, 2013 - 05:02pm PT
I don't know much about Mark the person, only that his Gym Jones training center is one of the most sought after "private" gyms around. When I lived in SLC, a number of the top guys I did Brazilian Jiu Jitsu with got the invite to go there for their strength and conditioning needs. I know several of the faces in his gallery very well, and they all went on to new levels of greatness in that sport as a result.

I have trained with his wife several times, and even taught her a thing or two when she came to the class I was instructing once long ago (I was an assistant instructor).

If I was still living there, I would for sure seek out an invite to train there (to help my climbing, not my BJJ as I had to retire from that sport due to injury).

I met him a couple of times, but never let on that I was a climber who was pretty familiar with his resume. Always seemed decent enough. But, there's the public persona people present to strangers, and the "real" person beneath. Still, I tend to withold judgment without any personal, first hand experience.
Tarbuster

climber
right here, right now
Jan 30, 2013 - 05:23pm PT
Coz,

This is almost an off-line discussion between you and me at this point. I will say that the way you enter these conversations is sometimes a bit like a bull in a china shop and I'm not always all that clear where you're coming from with the stuff you bring. This can make it difficult for me to respond, sorry.

For the sake of communication, clarity, and fun, I'll try to address or clarify what I think you were responding to in what Jim, others, and I have said.

I don't get my panties all in a bunch over bottled oxygen per se. You are correct; I've never been even close to needing it. I donít play the big mountain game. One of the broader issues which we are discussing as I see it, besides what Mark Twight's ego incites in people (ie. how he gets their hackles up in general, which is a separate or sub topic really), is the concept of the masses losing sight, or perhaps never understanding to begin with, what a minimalist approach is all about and why seasoned alpinist's adhere to it. And why everyone who plays should at least understand it and try to incorporate some of it in their approach to their pursuits: to even go so far as to limit or augment their goals accordingly.

That a very select portion of the mountains has become cluttered with neophytes looking to bag trophies with any means at their disposal is what I think some of us are talking about. That it has an impact which is unsustainable and that it sometimes increases hazards through overcrowding is what I find patently obvious.

Chest beating over style in the matter involves a very broad spectrum. Exactly where O2 should come into play in that spectrum is something I wouldn't try to pin down, to champion or defend. Not enough/any experience with it.

Be well!
Thanks,
Roy
Patrick Sawyer

climber
Originally California now Ireland
Jan 30, 2013 - 05:24pm PT
Off topic

And Patrick...Ya man! I have been on the seen for two shark attacks to friends. Same area. Objective danger keeps us all honest and certainly trivializes these debates....

When you say same area, do you mean Bodega Bay?

Doesn't matter if it is Bodega Bay, Bolinas Bay, Monterey Bay whatever, that stretch all the way up to the Eel River and down to San Luis Obispo is only 60-100 miles or so from the Farallones, one of the largest great white breeding grounds in the north Pacific.

And yet, not that many attacks over the years. People cheating death?

If so, that kind of cheating I can take.

I was always freaked surfing in Monterey Bay when even some seaweed would brush up against me. "What was that?"

EDIT

the word I always got was, do not surf near the mouths of rivers. They attract seals and sea lions looking for food/fish coming down the river, and of course these pinipeds are yummy for great whites. But, apparently, research (and I saw a video) shows that the orcas/killer whales love hanging around the Farallones because they have a taste for shark liver.

http://channel.nationalgeographic.com/wild/shark-attack-experiment-live/videos/killer-whale-vs-jaws/

http://channel.nationalgeographic.com/wild/shark-attack-experiment-live/videos/how-whales-eat-sharks1/

And an adult orca can easily dispatch an adult great white.

Now back to cheating in climbing.

Sorry for the thread drift folks.
Tarbuster

climber
right here, right now
Jan 30, 2013 - 05:30pm PT
Thread drift cleanses the palate!
wstmrnclmr

Trad climber
Bolinas, CA
Jan 30, 2013 - 05:43pm PT
Patrick...Could be thread drift and yet could be parallel discussion. The attacks were in the same area i.e. the so called "Red Triangle" which may also be much like the so called "death zone" at high altitude which one of the details (0two)in regards to cheating has centered on. One of the attacks was off Stinson Beach and the other at the mouth of Drakes Estero. Both men lived. It is analogues to the discussion in that a surfer difinitely is performing a very risky adventure in a very honest/good style way when entering the Red Triangle. Minimal gear and as dangerous these days as any objective danger in Mountaineering. Note that Scott Anderson, THE number 1 authority in IMO has tagged OVER 70!!! Great White's off the tip of Point Reyes (Pierce Point)alone! I always thought there might be like 10.....

Tar and Coz...Much like the counterpoint in great classical music, both your insights, though delivered differently, are of immense value to any discussion.
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