Ron Skelton/72nd Birthday/Perfect Lead of Crack-a-Go-Go

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mtnyoung

Trad climber
Twain Harte, California
Topic Author's Original Post - Feb 4, 2013 - 11:52pm PT
Today was Ron's 72nd birthday, so I went over to the Valley to meet him. The weather was perfect and the rock was dry.

We warmed up on Outer Limits and then he fired a perfect lead of Crack-a-Go-Go. Yeah, he's led it before. Yeah he knows the pro. But, yeah, that birthday number was 72. And when his foot skated off a smear he actually just laughed at it.

We went down to their house for some Pineapple Upside-down birthday cake afterward.

All in all a fine day. I may be able to post some photos later if the friend who took them emails them to me.
Bullwinkle

Boulder climber
Feb 4, 2013 - 11:56pm PT
I think that you've Ron's age wrong, he's 27, not 72.

Edit, well he sure climbs like he's 27, one of the most talented valley climbers ever IMO.
mtnyoung

Trad climber
Twain Harte, California
Topic Author's Reply - Feb 4, 2013 - 11:59pm PT
I think that you've Ron's age wrong, he's 27, not 72.

Can't be. If he's 27, I'm in diapers (almost anyway).
T Hocking

Trad climber
Redding, Ca
Feb 4, 2013 - 11:59pm PT
Happy 72 to Ron, Way to crack a go-go!!!
hope I'm still breathin at 72.
le_bruce

climber
Oakland, CA
Feb 5, 2013 - 12:02am PT
That's inspiring. How many people past 70 on the planet can lead an .11+ on gear? Might be a club of ten? Less?
Lynne Leichtfuss

Sport climber
moving thru
Feb 5, 2013 - 12:02am PT
Well what ever, 72...27 dude sounds cool. My papa loves pineapple upside down cake and had it at his recent 85th bday party. Must have been the cake of the era.

I'm inspired that if RS can still climb so can I. Cheers and Happy Birthday. lynne
donini

Trad climber
Ouray, Colorado
Feb 5, 2013 - 12:07am PT
Way to go!!!!!
Ed Hartouni

Trad climber
Livermore, CA
Feb 5, 2013 - 12:12am PT
happy birthday Ron, you are an inspiration you are
WBraun

climber
Feb 5, 2013 - 12:19am PT
That's impossible!

It's never ever been done.

Until today ....... :-)
Ihateplastic

Trad climber
It ain't El Cap, Oregon
Feb 5, 2013 - 12:29am PT
At first I thought it said RED Skelton! I didn't even know Red Skelton climbed so waltzing up Crack-a-Go-Go was even more unreal.

Anyway... nice lead by a young lad!
T H

Boulder climber
bouldering
Feb 5, 2013 - 01:23am PT
I once danced with his daughter.
Andy2

climber
Feb 5, 2013 - 06:14am PT
He's not just a one-trick pony. Here's a picture from a couple of years ago:

Nice shirt !
Nice shirt !
Credit: Andy2

Bonus point if you know which famous American climber did the FA.

Happy birthday Ron !
Jan

Mountain climber
Okinawa, Japan
Feb 5, 2013 - 07:17am PT
I'm 68 and I'm lucky to do 5.6. More power to him. A true inspiration.
philo

Trad climber
Is that light the end of the tunnel or a train?
Feb 5, 2013 - 07:18am PT
Hey that is awesome. Happy Birthday Ron.
Patrick Sawyer

climber
Originally California now Ireland
Feb 5, 2013 - 07:24am PT
I am 56 and I have to lose weight if I am going to lead 5.11 at even 60. Way to go Red, eh, I am mean Ron.

Crackin' the whip on a go-go.

(I know this is off topic, but Red Skelton was my late mother's favorite comedian.)

Happy b'day Ron.

MtnYoung, what's Twain Harte like nowadays? I lived in Cedar Ridge from 1974-1977, off and on.

Andy2, I guess I get minus points, as I do not even know where that climb is.
mcreel

climber
Barcelona
Feb 5, 2013 - 07:31am PT
First Sasha Digiulian, now this. The mortals are getting it from all angles. Sheesh!
Gunkie

Trad climber
East Coast US
Feb 5, 2013 - 07:58am PT
Awesome!
Norwegian

Trad climber
Pollock Pines, California
Feb 5, 2013 - 08:15am PT
donini there's your nose in a day partner.
Rhodo-Router

Gym climber
sawatch choss
Feb 5, 2013 - 08:24am PT
Happy Birthday Ron! Glad to hear you're still in great shape.
jaaan

Trad climber
Chamonix, France
Feb 5, 2013 - 08:33am PT
Bonus point if you know which famous American climber did the FA.

Henry Barber?
zBrown

Ice climber
chingadero de chula vista
Feb 5, 2013 - 08:47am PT
Way to go Ron. You were moving so fast, you just showed up as a red blur.

couchmaster

climber
pdx
Feb 5, 2013 - 09:00am PT
Badassed!

Till someone shows up with a a pic, here's Phil Bards shot of Bachar soloing it stolen off Mt Project.
Andy2

climber
Feb 5, 2013 - 09:12am PT
Patrick,
I don't want to post a hint until the west coast people have woken up and had their say...
Andy2

climber
Feb 5, 2013 - 09:12am PT
Credit: Andy2
Bonus point for jaaaan !
Alan Rubin

climber
Amherst,MA.
Feb 5, 2013 - 09:17am PT
Inspiring!!!!Crack-a-go-go kicked my butt repeatedly when I was a mere lad in my 40s.
zBrown

Ice climber
chingadero de chula vista
Feb 5, 2013 - 09:34am PT
Dr. Hartouni put this up on youtube



PhilG

Trad climber
The Circuit, Tonasket WA
Feb 5, 2013 - 11:05am PT
I'm with Jan, except it's closer to 5.4 these days.
Very inspiring, Ron.

My advice to you young kids: make sure you inherit the "right" genes!
Steve Grossman

Trad climber
Seattle, WA
Feb 5, 2013 - 11:07am PT
Happy Big Day Ron!

Go-Go-Go-Go-Go-Go-Go-Go! Get a cold Beer-Beer-Beer-Beer-Beer-Beer!

Cheers to you 72!
Mark Hudon

Trad climber
Hood River, OR
Feb 5, 2013 - 11:24am PT
Totally inspiring!
k-man

Gym climber
SCruz
Feb 5, 2013 - 11:45am PT
Me: Doc, when my arm heals, will I be able to climb .11+?

Doc: Sure, it'll be good as new.

Me: Cool, I've always wanted to climb that hard!


Now all I gotta do is get that arm healed, and I am THERE!


That's what Ron has done to me :: In-spired!
Ron Anderson

Trad climber
Soon to be Nipple suckling Liberal
Feb 5, 2013 - 11:47am PT
Dayum... The DOOD is ON IT!
guyman

Social climber
Moorpark, CA.
Feb 5, 2013 - 11:51am PT
Inspiring...... just what I need to see.
KP Ariza

climber
SCC
Feb 5, 2013 - 11:54am PT
72?!! Damn! Happy Bday Ron. Pretty damn inspiring.

Here's a couple from 1984

Credit: KP Ariza

Credit: Joe Hedge
k-man

Gym climber
SCruz
Feb 5, 2013 - 11:58am PT
Damn he's good! He did a costume change in between moves!
rockermike

Trad climber
Berkeley
Feb 5, 2013 - 12:07pm PT
so how did Bacher get down after soloing?
WBraun

climber
Feb 5, 2013 - 12:09pm PT
Huh?

You climb to the top and walk off .....
SCseagoat

Trad climber
Santa Cruz
Feb 5, 2013 - 12:48pm PT
Very nice! Belated birthday wishes to one tough dude!

Susan
mtnyoung

Trad climber
Twain Harte, California
Topic Author's Reply - Feb 5, 2013 - 01:02pm PT
Andy: I don't know which climb that is, but I'll bet I've heard Ron's story about it. He's famous among a few of his partners for coming home from Britain and giving us the "move-by-move" about climbs we've never seen.

Patrick: Twain Harte is wonderful nowadays. I bet you'd recognize it in most ways. There's been a little more development. Most people are perhaps more broad-minded than when you lived here. But it's all still Twain Harte, a very nice place to make a home.
phylp

Trad climber
Millbrae, CA
Feb 5, 2013 - 01:13pm PT
Wow! That is so impressive and inspirational.
GDavis

Social climber
SOL CAL
Feb 5, 2013 - 01:36pm PT
Yes that is right... the word is out... age is just a number. Sorry, no more excuses! Let's go rock climbing :D
Mungeclimber

Trad climber
the crowd MUST BE MOCKED...Mocked I tell you.
Feb 5, 2013 - 01:40pm PT
Happy Birthday Ron!

All is well in the universe if Ron is firing that on his bday again!
Andy2

climber
Feb 5, 2013 - 03:18pm PT
Hi Brad,
So we know it's in Britain, and we know the FA was Henry Barber, which means it's Deja Vu in the Great Zawn, Cornwall.
Vitaliy M.

Mountain climber
San Francisco
Feb 5, 2013 - 03:23pm PT
Incredible. Happy birthday to him. Many more leads and great health for many years to come!
mtnyoung

Trad climber
Twain Harte, California
Topic Author's Reply - Feb 5, 2013 - 03:32pm PT
I'm going to call Ron this afternoon and ask for the blow by blow: "Deja Vu" in the Great Zawn, Cornwall. How old was he then?

I'll tell you Andy, I've always assumed that when I get to Britain all I will want to do is visit its great historic and cultural sites. But because of Ron's stories I know there's great climbing there, and I'm tempted to try just a few classics.
msiddens

Trad climber
Feb 5, 2013 - 03:34pm PT
That's so cool Brad thanks. Ron is such a nice guy, impressed from the short chat I had with him a month back at the West Side. You aren't so bad yourself;-)
mtnyoung

Trad climber
Twain Harte, California
Topic Author's Reply - Feb 5, 2013 - 03:41pm PT
Thanks Marc, I think :) :)

It's pretty cool that we can get a died-in-the-wool Yosemite Valley climber (who lives a ten minute drive from the Cookie Cliff) to the Pinnacles West Side now and then. Yes, Pinnacles.

A year ago we go him there and he led both pitches of Lava Falls. He thought it was one of the very best face climbs he'd ever done.
msiddens

Trad climber
Feb 5, 2013 - 04:00pm PT
A year ago we go him there and he led both pitches of Lava Falls. He thought it was one of the very best face climbs he'd ever done.

Thats because it IS:-)

True about getting him to come to the Pinns. I admit I love the place but were I to live say near the Arch Rock entance to YOS, it would take a great friend to lure me to the Pinns.
Clint Cummins

Trad climber
SF Bay area, CA
Feb 5, 2013 - 04:09pm PT
A fine birthday tradition!
I bet the photos look a lot like these: :-)

http://www.supertopo.com/climbers-forum/1741529/Happy-Birthday-Ron-Skelton (71st)

http://www.supertopo.com/climbers-forum/779637/Ron-Skelton-68th-Birthday-Crack-a-Go-Go
mtnyoung

Trad climber
Twain Harte, California
Topic Author's Reply - Feb 5, 2013 - 04:15pm PT
No Clint, the photos from yesterday will be vastly different in that Ron's climbing more often in sweats than in jeans ;)

But he's got the same bivy-sack sized chalk-bag, that'll never change.
Andy2

climber
Feb 5, 2013 - 05:06pm PT
I'm going to call Ron this afternoon and ask for the blow by blow: "Deja Vu" in the Great Zawn, Cornwall. How old was he then?

Picture was taken in summer 2004 - you do the math, my brain's not up to it any more.

We'd be delighted to see you here any time Brad - you just need to wait for the monsoon to relent.
o-man

Social climber
Paia,Maui,HI
Feb 6, 2013 - 02:33am PT
RESPECT!
mctwisted

Trad climber
e.p.
Feb 6, 2013 - 10:08am PT
way to go Ron! here's a shot i found from last year
Credit: mctwisted
J. Werlin

Social climber
Cedaredge, CO
Feb 6, 2013 - 10:47am PT
Three cheers for Ron!
Alexey

Trad climber
San Jose, CA
Feb 6, 2013 - 05:26pm PT
Very inspirational to climb such hard climb on 72nd Birthday.
And the great idea to pick up you favorite climb and climb it every year as your own birthday gift.
Happy Birthday Ron.
Fat Dad

Trad climber
Los Angeles, CA
Feb 6, 2013 - 05:48pm PT
Sounds like his tendons have aged as well as he has. I'm 49 and that would kick my desk surfing ass right now. Well done sir.
duncan

climber
London, UK
Feb 6, 2013 - 05:56pm PT
That's impressive.

I would guess Deja Vu is around 5.10 R/X.

I only ever held my mate's rope on a brief attempt a few years ago. He didn't get far before thinking better of it and I didn't fancy my chances.
mouse from merced

Trad climber
The finger of fate, my friends, is fickle.
Feb 6, 2013 - 06:08pm PT
Lilabiene now owns one of Ron's old 9 X 165 ropes.

Long story for the campfire.

Nothing like living in the place that's the best to keep you young.

Happy Birthday, Ron.
mucci

Trad climber
The pitch of Bagalaar above you
Feb 6, 2013 - 06:23pm PT
Awesome!

Happy Birthday Ron! Hope to see you around this year.

WooooHOOOOoooo!
zBrown

Ice climber
chingadero de chula vista
Feb 6, 2013 - 06:26pm PT
More Photos:

2008: http://www.mudncrud.com/gallery/main.php?g2_itemId=13272
slideshow



kennyt

climber
Woodfords,California
Feb 6, 2013 - 09:48pm PT
That's so effin, AWESOME.
David Wilson

climber
CA
Feb 7, 2013 - 10:22am PT
Bump for Ron. Glad to hear you sent yet again !
mtnyoung

Trad climber
Twain Harte, California
Topic Author's Reply - Feb 8, 2013 - 12:27am PT
Bumping this so it's ahead of the four year old (similar) thread.
Studly

Trad climber
WA
Feb 8, 2013 - 12:37am PT
Super in spiring
Largo

Sport climber
The Big Wide Open Face
Feb 8, 2013 - 01:49am PT
Great work, Ron. That's a stiff one with weird pro. Best of all is that you're healthy. We need heroes. Or I do anyhow, and you're mine for the moment.

JL
tinker b

climber
the commonwealth
Feb 8, 2013 - 02:10am PT
happy birthday!
to inspire folks more ron had cancer a few years ago.
72 + cancer survivor + 5.11= bad ass
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