Was your dad a climber? Or your Mom? Or neither?

Search
Go

Discussion Topic

Return to Forum List
Post a Reply
Messages 1 - 69 of total 69 in this topic
micronut

Trad climber
Fresno/Clovis, ca
Topic Author's Original Post - Sep 5, 2013 - 02:12pm PT
Mine wasn't. But my dad taught me how to backpack. My mom how to make a good campfire. Climbing for me started out of a backpacking love of the mountains, that grew into what it is today after seeing some climbers coming down a trail, looking haggard, gear jangling all over their packs. I was smitten.

But now I'm a dad who is showing my children climbing at a young age. The Force is strong with them and my greatest days in the mountains have been on summits with my children.

Was your Dad a climber?
Or your Mom?
Or Neither?

I think it could be a fun thread (with photos if you got em)to hear of old school moms and dads who helped create the climber you are.

Gabriel (10) topping out Cathedral Peak...his first big summit...
Gabriel (10) topping out Cathedral Peak...his first big summit...two weeks ago.
Credit: micronut
karodrinker

Trad climber
San Jose, CA
Sep 5, 2013 - 02:14pm PT
My Dad. He climbed in Yosemite during the early 70s, then became an Arborist. He's had me swinging on ropes my whole life.

Reilly

Mountain climber
The Other Monrovia- CA
Sep 5, 2013 - 02:18pm PT
Are those the only choices?
GhoulweJ

Trad climber
El Dorado Hills, CA
Sep 5, 2013 - 02:18pm PT
Neither.
They think it's stupid.
Gary

Social climber
Desolation Basin, Calif.
Sep 5, 2013 - 02:24pm PT
Neither. Hillbillies don't have to go camping. They were living on the land, they didn't have to go visit it.
chick_on_ice

Trad climber
Sep 5, 2013 - 02:26pm PT
If I was 1/10th the badass my dad is and had half his rockin' style, I'd be at a good place in my life.

Soviet sufferfest 1991-sytle. Far left is my hero with only part of hi...
Soviet sufferfest 1991-sytle. Far left is my hero with only part of his nose left.
Credit: chick_on_ice
1995 With V. Gorelik on Pobeda.
1995 With V. Gorelik on Pobeda.
Credit: chick_on_ice
One stylin' Soviet
One stylin' Soviet
Credit: chick_on_ice
micronut

Trad climber
Fresno/Clovis, ca
Topic Author's Reply - Sep 5, 2013 - 02:31pm PT
Chica on Ice...How cool. Those old dues were so hard. Glad he showed you the high places.
micronut

Trad climber
Fresno/Clovis, ca
Topic Author's Reply - Sep 5, 2013 - 02:32pm PT
Ghoul,

That's probably a common sentiment. I'm sure you're not alone.
WyoRockMan

climber
Flank of the Big Horns
Sep 5, 2013 - 02:32pm PT
My Mom started climbing when she split with my Dad. She was never serious about the climbing, but was really into the hiking/peak bagging.

My mom on some peak.
My mom on some peak.
Credit: WyoRockMan

She did make sure I got a love of the slab and wyde early on though. She has always been supportive of my climbing.

Way better.
Way better.
Credit: WyoRockMan
My first OW. (Hyalite Canyon, MT)
My first OW. (Hyalite Canyon, MT)
Credit: WyoRockMan

My oldest son hates it, but my daughter is just starting to get into it.

Meadow having a ball.
Meadow having a ball.
Credit: WyoRockMan
matty

Trad climber
under the sea
Sep 5, 2013 - 02:38pm PT
Neither ....but I fixed that...


http://www.supertopo.com/tr/Lost-Arrow-Spire-Fun-in-Sun-with-Father-and-Son/t11735n.html



dad on the spire summit
dad on the spire summit
Credit: matty
Dingus Milktoast

Gym climber
And every fool knows, a dog needs a home, and...
Sep 5, 2013 - 02:41pm PT
No. My Pop was not a climber at all. He was a good hunter and a good car camper :-) plus he could run a small farm and pretty much handle most anything mechanical, electrical and construction oriented. He could trouble shoot equipment he was newly familiar with and taught me trouble shooting logic from a young age. I think all of the skills I learned from him as a boy factor into my style of climbing even though they weren't necessarily related to climbing-movement.

I had the run of the woods and a small recreational farm, first in NJ and then in Tenn. Had a horse and open access to firearms, camping gear and canoe. The biggest thing my pop did for the future climber in me was invest faith that I could use these tools without supervision.

"Can I borrow the canoe? Me and Junior want to float Turnbull Creek and camp out somewhere along the way. Mom will pick us up Sunday?"

He let me do that sh#t from the age 13 onward! That is when I became interested enough in technical climbing to invest some of my own - allowance and work money saved up for a goldline rope and some runners. And I was off to the races.

At about age 15 or 16, I was in the garage one night, sorting what little gear I owned. Pop wandered in and wanted to know from what. So I explained a little and he asked me to show him how the rappelling worked. He'd seen me once dulfersitz the chimney on his barn with a polypro rope, so he was a bit dubious.

I showed him knots by tying rope to bench and running it out the door. I showed him the diaper harness by putting it on. He wanted to know materials strengths (a metalurgist by training and welding engineer by practice), etc. which I could easily spout. He marveled at the strength of tubular webbing.

I showed him how a carabiner was used to bind the harness and connect the figure 8. Then I showed my how it worked by rappelling out of the garage and down the driveway (it was steep but not THAT steep). He seemed quite satisfied I knew what I was doing and aside from general curiosity some 25 years later on a visit to California, he never once questioned my gear or competence again, not once.

The other great gift he gave me was enthusiastic support for some 30-years after I flew the nest. Invariably, when we talked by phone or in person he asked me if I was climbing still. He didn't seem to want or need to hear the stories, he just wanted to know I still had a passion and the energy to pursue it. He'd always answer the same,

"Good, it keeps you young." And he'd nod a firm, but friendly approval.

He asked me that question about 2-weeks before he passed at 85 years of age. Still brings tears to my eyes. I was in Death Valley the night he died, too.

Miss you Pop!
DMT

Brandon-

climber
The Granite State.
Sep 5, 2013 - 02:47pm PT
My dad taught me how to backpack and was one heck of a belay slave, but he never climbed.

He's a hardcore roadie, he's got 3500 miles this year (so far) averaging around 19 mph. Dude is badass, just not a climber.

Thanks dad!
chick_on_ice

Trad climber
Sep 5, 2013 - 02:53pm PT
micronut:

my dad is still a pretty ridiculous 'hard guy'. Here is a photo from our deck right now, where he is busy being domestic. He still smokes me running, skiing, climbing.... the only thing I can marginally do better than him is technical ice and rock and that's only because he's never tried it (you know, the whole Soviet siege-style expedition sufferfests were very much 'in' when he climbed with them. Not so much the light and fast alpine styles).

54 and rockin' the short shorts. Some things never change.
54 and rockin' the short shorts. Some things never change.
Credit: chick_on_ice
Clint Cummins

Trad climber
SF Bay area, CA
Sep 5, 2013 - 02:59pm PT
Mt. Buckner 1972
Mt. Buckner 1972
Credit: my dad
Both.
I don't encourage my kids to climb, though - too many family tragedies (already).
But I'll go if they initiate it. They are into running and biking and seem to be having lots of fun....
T Hocking

Trad climber
Redding, Ca
Sep 5, 2013 - 03:11pm PT
Neither parents climbed but they supported me by driving me to J-Tree, Tahquitz and Yos Valley before I could drive myself.

I am passing the stoke/tradition on to my son in law
Mitch.
Teaching Mitch belay device basics
Teaching Mitch belay device basics
Credit: T Hocking
The noob shows good form.
The noob shows good form.
Credit: T Hocking
Family victory shot.
Family victory shot.
Credit: T Hocking
Fat Dad

Trad climber
Los Angeles, CA
Sep 5, 2013 - 03:11pm PT
Neither, which makes my mom's OK with it when I wanted to learn at 13 and my dad driving me to the crags and belaying me all the more supportive and memorable. When I was 16 I ran away from home to go to the Valley (well, my two big sisters drove me to the bus stop), they didn't even try to drag me home. My dad just drove up, made sure I was OK and had enough cash until I was ready to head home when school started. Crazy good parents.
micronut

Trad climber
Fresno/Clovis, ca
Topic Author's Reply - Sep 5, 2013 - 03:15pm PT
Very cool Clint. Great photo. I hear you. I want my kids to love the outdoors. To enjoy a trout rise, a well gained summit and a breathtaking sunset. I wouldn't "choose" a hard driving alpine lifestyle for them if I had the choice. As a dad I realize the reality of the danger in climbing and sometimes its a bit of a dilemma for me. Who knows where they'll end up, but I sure do love being out there with them.


I love that my seven year old asked me the other day if we had to "rap off the summit" or if we could downclimb. Its fun just hearing the word "rap" in your kindergartener's lexicon.
JEleazarian

Trad climber
Fresno CA
Sep 5, 2013 - 03:16pm PT
Neither climbed. My dad worked on the dams and power stations in the Big Creek and San Joaquin River Canyon areas in the early 1920's, and had months of bivouacs when he served as a Sea Bee in WWII. Between those two activities, he didn't really view camping in the mountains as a vacation.

He did, however, carry me up Moro Rock when I was an infant, and his sister took my mother, sisters and me camping every year. I hiked to Half Dome with my mother when I was 11, and that hike probably got me going climbing.

My mother is 101, and my dad, if he were alive, would have been 112, so they won't be climbing now. Then again, to paraphrase Tom Patey, with two golden wings as a passport, Dad wouldn't need to climb to get up a wall.

John
Clint Cummins

Trad climber
SF Bay area, CA
Sep 5, 2013 - 03:16pm PT
[Ritner Walling]
I've met him! He was/is a cool dude.
[Edit: he is not Russ's dad - Russ was just having fun]
Mungeclimber

Trad climber
Nothing creative to say
Sep 5, 2013 - 03:33pm PT
Avid fisherman. Did backpacking with me as a kid, and then later family trips throughout the Sierra.

He's summited Mt Whitney and I haven't!! :)

He's done more 14'rs than I have too!

I've had him out climbing once. That was cool.

Trying to get mom out too.
Cosmiccragsman

Trad climber
AKA Dwain, from Apple Valley, Ca. and Vegas!
Sep 5, 2013 - 04:12pm PT
My Dad was a Marine Mountain Warfare climbing trainer during the summers at Bridgeport he was in the Marines for 33 years.
He was the one who taught me the ropes in 65/66 era.

He taught all us boys map reading, tracking, hunting, survival skills.
We also did a lot of backpacking in the desert and the sierras.

I always tell people I was in Marine Boot camp for 18 years, till I left
home. :)
Clint Cummins

Trad climber
SF Bay area, CA
Sep 5, 2013 - 04:12pm PT
:-)
He was a character.
Actually, he's probably still alive and kicking - in his 70s, still a character.
steveA

Trad climber
Wolfeboro, NH
Sep 5, 2013 - 04:25pm PT
Ritner Walling was a graduate of MIT, and owned one of the largest salvage barges on the East Coast. He was in the marine salvage business, located in N.J.

MisterE

climber
Sep 5, 2013 - 05:15pm PT
Dad (Mike Borghoff) was a climber and a poet among other things:

MB on cover of Summit
MB on cover of Summit
Credit: Steve Roper

Michael Borghoff
Michael Borghoff
Credit: Glen Denny

I was too young to consider climbing in the technical sense of the word when my parents were traveling and climbing

MisterE in Yosemite 1966
MisterE in Yosemite 1966
Credit: Glen Denny

but I picked it up 23 years later and still going strong 22 years after that!

Edit: I just remember that Mom once told me she climbed Nutcracker when she was 6 months pregnant with me - that would have been the fall of 1961...she gave it up after childbirth.


eKat

Trad climber
Less than a second shy of 49 minutes
Sep 5, 2013 - 05:23pm PT
I was my father's son. . . he didn't surf, but he got me into it as a little, little kid. . . he didn't race moto-cross, but he was my biggest supporter. . . he didn't climb, but he sent me box upon box upon box of gear and treats BITD3. . . he didn't ski but pounded down the fundage for me to have the very best gear until I landed a sponsorship. . . what he did do . . . was fly fighter planes and bombers. . . from him, I inherited the GO FOR IT GENE!

:-)

Dad ROCKED.

Mom?

ChickenOfTheSea - called everything I did, "MOTHER SCARING ACTIVITY!". . . and would give me ten kinds of grief for having inherited the GO FOR IT GENE from her husband. . . until, she moved to Mammoth and ended up knowing everybody (She could have been the frikken Mayor!). . . nonetheless, I'd run into people all over town who would go on and on about how PROUD she was of Blanchard and me. . . and how she'd spray all about the stuff we did. . . How weird is that?

:-)
Darwin

Trad climber
Seattle, WA
Sep 5, 2013 - 06:54pm PT
My complements on the choice of topic.

Dad (born 1911) did mining, prospecting and a lot of roughing about. As such he knew ropes, rigging, camping and camp cooking. He a was also a good enough mechanic. Strangely, I don't think he was that good a carpenter. As with many depression era people: he mostly didn't see much use for exercise for the sake of exercise. ...

Mom was a courageous plucky lass who loved traveling, if needs be with just the two us. Oh yeah, she was a woman MD in 1953.

Both had keen scientific medical minds and did a good job transferring knowledge they though was important.

i.e. I think I hit the jackpot.
Leggs

Sport climber
Tucson, AZ
Sep 5, 2013 - 07:14pm PT
Mom and Dad were both avid outdoor adventurers, exposing us kids all through our childhood... until Mom got sick in '84.
When she passed in '86, my Dad took up trad climbing. His decision freaked me the f*#k out.

And then he took me to the rock quarry in Rocklin, CA when I was 15? ... and I had a blast.

It was Kevin Carmichael, here in Tucson, who would actually get me into climbing at the age of 23. I took off with it, in a huge way. It consumed nearly everyday of my life. Made a living, for a brief time, at it.

It wasn't until I started climbing myself that I realized my Dad had sidelined a desire to climb in order to care for my mom and brother and I. And when the time was right, he explored and dived into his desire to climb.

I am so happy he did that for himself, and I have mad respect for him.

Now, when he sees a photo of me bouldering HE freaks out and asks me, "Where is your rope!?".

~peace
jstan

climber
Sep 5, 2013 - 07:27pm PT
Ever hear of Ritner Walling?

I've wondered about that. Ritner used to hang out with the MIT people. His most famous adventure reportedly involved dynamite and an outhouse. That was before I showed up so I have no direct testimony and I am sticking to my story. Later, a skiing accident gave him a spiral fracture of the leg that had us all worried. It did finally knit though. Those were very colorful days.
dee ee

Mountain climber
citizen of planet Earth
Sep 5, 2013 - 07:31pm PT
My Dad was a climber. He took me up my first peaks, my first 14'ers and my first routes at Stony and Tahquitz. He died when I was 12.
TGT

Social climber
So Cal
Sep 5, 2013 - 07:46pm PT
from him, I inherited the GO FOR IT GENE!

There's something to that!

USMC Camp Pendelton game warden showing off
USMC Camp Pendelton game warden showing off
Credit: TGT

Not a climber, but USFS Foreman when I was born.

He had a rule when we went on a hike, me and my two brothers.

We weren't allowed to speak or make noise.

Keep your mouth shut, your eyes peeled and your ears open.

You just might see something!
nboles

Trad climber
fremont. ca
Sep 5, 2013 - 07:47pm PT
Well one of My grandfathers climbed in the 1920's
My grandfather in Mexico
My grandfather in Mexico
Credit: nboles
guido

Trad climber
Santa Cruz/New Zealand/South Pacific
Sep 5, 2013 - 07:50pm PT
Only thing my dad ever climbed was his secretary and ended up marrying her and leaving me in the dust at age three. Alas, I ended up with a great stepdad so not to complain.
lars johansen

Trad climber
West Marin, CA
Sep 5, 2013 - 07:54pm PT
My parents wouldn't even go outside. I think that's what drove into the arms of this crazy life.

lars
Banquo

climber
Amerricka
Sep 5, 2013 - 08:10pm PT
Dad wasn't a technical climber but as a USGS topographer he submitted about a zillion mountains over a 30 year career including a few in Antarctica and Alaska.

My dad in Antarctica 1962
My dad in Antarctica 1962
Credit: Banquo

His mountains:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Merrick_Mountains
guido

Trad climber
Santa Cruz/New Zealand/South Pacific
Sep 5, 2013 - 08:56pm PT
Conrad Merrick-that is so cool Banquo.
Leggs

Sport climber
Tucson, AZ
Sep 5, 2013 - 09:13pm PT
^^^ What Guido said...

that is pretty bad ass.
micronut

Trad climber
Fresno/Clovis, ca
Topic Author's Reply - Sep 5, 2013 - 09:19pm PT
Banquo. Your dad has a Chris Christofferson-ness to him. I'm diggin all these "real men" dads. So cool.

Evel

Trad climber
Nedsterdam CO
Sep 5, 2013 - 09:29pm PT
My Dad was The Man! Wasn't a rock-climber per se, but was a Mountain Man for sure. He was a peak-bagger, and me being an impetuous kid wanted to do "real" climbing so we went to Seneca Rocks when I was about 6 years old. That was a while ago, and I haven't stopped! I miss him every day. He was a Man!



Yo Dingus, The only thing you left out was running a trap line every day!
MarkWestman

Trad climber
Talkeetna, Alaska
Sep 5, 2013 - 09:48pm PT
My dad started taking my brother and I on backpacking trips in the soCal mountains in 1979. That led to the Sierras the next year and by 1985 when I was 15 we had completed every section of the John Muir Trail. When I was nine, I was a pretty shy kid looking for a purpose. The mountains became that purpose and the countless great times with my dad in the mountains was invaluable for me. Thanks Dad!!

My dad and I in the San Bernardino Mountains, June, 1979
My dad and I in the San Bernardino Mountains, June, 1979
Credit: MarkWestman

Mather Pass, August, 1982
Mather Pass, August, 1982
Credit: MarkWestman

Mount Whitney, August, 1984
Mount Whitney, August, 1984
Credit: MarkWestman

After climbing Banner Peak, August, 1986
After climbing Banner Peak, August, 1986
Credit: MarkWestman

After climbing Mount Tyndall from Shepherd Pass, August, 1988
After climbing Mount Tyndall from Shepherd Pass, August, 1988
Credit: MarkWestman

Mount Agassiz, September, 1987
Mount Agassiz, September, 1987
Credit: MarkWestman

I didn't do any roped climbing until 1992. By 1996 I was working as a climbing ranger at Mount Rainier. My dad, initially dismayed by my career detour, joined the park service as a volunteer, and then we climbed the mountain together in 1996 when my dad was 61 years old:

Dad and I on top of Rainier, July, 1996.
Dad and I on top of Rainier, July, 1996.
Credit: MarkWestman

We climbed the mountain twice more together including when he was 65. He worked as a backcountry ranger in the park for 8 seasons and retired at age 70. He just had double knee replacements and at 78 is trying to get back on the trail again!

My dad is awesome.


Magic Ed

Trad climber
Nuevo Leon, Mexico
Sep 5, 2013 - 09:51pm PT
In the early 1930's my Dad made his own ice axe and crampons and climbed all the Mexican volcanoes with his gang, who called themselves Los Gorrones (The Moochers).

He later sailed around the world on a sailboat and had a big adventure climbing the highest peak on Bora Bora.

We never climbed together but did a lot of hiking and camping.
10b4me

Ice climber
Soon 2B in Arizona
Sep 5, 2013 - 10:00pm PT
my dad didn't ride dirt bikes, but supported me while I did. Later on, when I got into hiking, he was my hiking partner. Later still, he was my fishing buddy. we fished a lot. good times.However, both he and my mom, especially my mom, never understood why I liked climbing.
limpingcrab

Trad climber
the middle of CA
Sep 5, 2013 - 10:29pm PT
Cool thread! Neither of mine were but they both love the mountains and got me started up there.

I'm taking my three month old to Kings Canyon this weekend to get him started early!
mcreel

climber
Barcelona
Sep 5, 2013 - 10:49pm PT
My parents first took us to the Wind Rivers in the early 70s, and we did a fair amount of peak bagging and desert hiking over the years. Little technical climbing, but we occasionally used some goldline and a few biners, once even rescued a stoned hippie on Gannett Peak who fell into the bergschrund below Gooseneck Spire. Later, once I got into rock climbing, they have done a bit over the years. We went out to City of Rocks this summer, and my mother made it all the way up Delay of Game (a long 5.8 face) and my father did the hard part of Adolescent Homo Sapiens (5.7). Both are in their 70s now. Pretty cool.
weezy

climber
Sep 6, 2013 - 12:24am PT
dad was not outdoorsy in the slightest. he liked to party and wear non-sensible shoes.

mom ran, or "jogged" as they called it bitd. did a few marathons. she got the whole climbing thing, even though it scared her. she eventually got a pitch or two in at j-tree and did the mountaineer's route on whitney with a supertopo person/old school legend. go mom!
QITNL

climber
Sep 6, 2013 - 01:17am PT
Neither. My dad passed away years ago, but I just got off the phone with my mom. Love you, mom!
j-tree

Big Wall climber
Classroom to crag to summer camp
Sep 6, 2013 - 03:00am PT
I very distinctly remember only one exchange between my father and myself regarding climbing:

We were hiking in the Pinnacles National Monument on the Upper Peaks Trail. I noticed a couple climbing on one of the formations as we walked by. Stopping, I pointed them out to my father who harrumphed and said only, "what a selfish user group." before continuing on the trail.
Cragman

Trad climber
June Lake, California....via the Damascus Road
Sep 6, 2013 - 06:01am PT
My parents had us kids camping in the dirt from the start, and my father took us on backpack trips early on....Yosemite backcountry, Grand Canyon, the Smokey Mountains...

They were flat out against me climbing, in the strongest of terms, and told me, "Nothing good will come from this."

In 1998, I received commendations from the California State Assembly and United States Congress for a rescue I was involved in high on Mt. Dana, which saved 3 lives. When my parents saw this, they basically ate their words, and literally said, " We never anticipated anything good coming from your climbing exploits."

To this day, they never want to know when I am heading out to climb....but they always want to see the pics when I return. And when they look at the pics, they always say the same thing....."You're the reason our hair is so grey."

: )

Dr.Sprock

Boulder climber
I'm James Brown, Bi-atch!
Sep 6, 2013 - 06:06am PT
mom used to climb, on dad,

if he wasn't drunk

which was never,


up and down, up and down, hear the bed go up an down,



Jaybro

Social climber
Wolf City, Wyoming
Sep 6, 2013 - 06:08am PT
Yep, mom and dad both. Though to paint a more accurate picture we all got intoclimbing at the same ( it was my brother's fault) fifty years ago. Not easy to do in Vhicago, back then!


And yeah when I met Russ' dad, a fascinating person in his own right, I didn't recall his name being Ritner. I would have remembered that
justthemaid

climber
Jim Henson's Basement
Sep 6, 2013 - 06:09am PT
I think Banquo's dad get's the bad-ass award and Kris Kristofferson definitely get's the casting call when they film "the movie".

Me.. neither parent climbs. They both think it's nutty. Both parents were educators, but were fairly active. They were avid skiers when I was a kid, but we did some hiking too. Dad was a lifeguard in New York in his youth. Mom grew up on a Kansas farm. My mom took up mountain biking lately. She's all bruised and scratched every time i see her.. and she thinks climbing is dangerous...?

Fortunately, they encouraged me to be pretty independent. Only child growing up in a kinda isolated area.. they gave me a horse and let me roam the entire Santa Monicas unsupervised. I didn't start climbing until I was 30.
AP

Trad climber
Calgary
Sep 6, 2013 - 06:59am PT
High adventure for my dad was golfing. My mother wouldn't even go camping.
How I became a climber is a mystery. Maybe because I was athletic but didn't like conventional sports.
donini

Trad climber
Ouray, Colorado
Sep 6, 2013 - 07:08am PT
Neither.....nor did they camp or backpack. I do remember my dad teasing me in 1953 (after news about Tensing and Hillary) that I wouldn't be able to do the first ascent of Everest.

Nice photo Micronut!
Alan Rubin

climber
Amherst,MA.
Sep 6, 2013 - 07:13am PT
Neither climbed nor did anything the least bit "outdoors"--other than look from the car. Same for all of my relatives. The family always wondered where my "outdoor mutation" came from. Wherever it did come from, I remember from a very early age being fascinated by the few wooded, hilly areas we'd drive by in northern Westchester County,NY---they seemed to be a true wilderness that was beckoning me. A bit older in the Scouts, hiking and camping were my favorite activities, likewise in summer camp--and hiking up mountains was best of all. What my parents did do was take me on a trip west when I was 14. I had alreay hiked summits in the White Mountains, but that trip I saw the Tetons and Yosemite and became a climber---well, a wannabe climber, in that I didn't actually have the opportunity to get on the rock until almost three years later. But inbetween I devoured everything about climbing I could find in the local libraries---a habit that still persists. Once I did start to climb, my folks, while always worried and still never quite understanding my obsession, never discouraged me and at least tried to pretend some degree of interest in my "adventures".

Even with both her parents being climbers, our daughter, despite trips to the crags and gym when younger, is not a climber, but she does share our love of camping and the outdoors.

Clint, I love that picture of you. Given the date and your appearance, it must have been taken not long after we first met.

Russ, I, too, knew Ritt, and share the consensus that he was quite the "character". Amongst his other accomplishments he was a pilot and was know to buzz the Gunks at quite a low altitude.
can't say

Social climber
Pasadena CA
Sep 6, 2013 - 08:46am PT
Both of my parents were academics and as far from having any inclination or desire to do physical things, albeit my dad loved his garden. The closet either of them came to climbing or hiking was when my mom worked for the Curry Co. in the summer of 46 and hiked to the top of Half Dome. That was about it for my family.

I was introduced to it via a month long California Outward Bound class in 1971 my parents sent me on in the hope I would get a clue about life. I got a clue about climbing, but it took much longer for the life thing.
jgill

Boulder climber
Colorado
Sep 6, 2013 - 11:01am PT
Ever hear of Ritner Walling?

A friend and climbing/bouldering companion in ancient times in the Tetons.
Clint Cummins

Trad climber
SF Bay area, CA
Sep 6, 2013 - 04:57pm PT
Clint, I love that picture of you. Given the date and your appearance, it must have been taken not long after we first met.
Alan,
Yeah, I'm sure glad my dad took some good photos on the family trips! And then my parents scanned their slides a couple of years ago to share with everyone.
1972 is indeed close - I think you and I first met in the fall of 1975.
Dave Davis

Social climber
Seattle, WA
Sep 6, 2013 - 05:29pm PT
Mr.E,
I Remember meeting your dad in Yosemite sometime back in the early seventies. We were both on a rescue to yank a couple of future luminaries off the prow. Your old man was quite a character with a very keen wit. Is he still around. Neither my father or my son are climbers(dad's 95).I guess common sense skipped a generation.
R.B.

Trad climber
47N 122W
Sep 6, 2013 - 05:36pm PT
BOTH ... and they were instrumental to my yearning for Rock Climbing at age 5. By age 10 we summitted Mt. Whitney East Face/Shakey Leg Var. ... and around the same time they established jointly with others CAMRA (Central AZ mtn Rescue Assoc.) an MRA chapter which still does Mtn Rescue to this day in the Maricopa County/Phoenix AZ area
(hey it's been 45 years now!)
Also to all those folks "we" used to teach how to climb!

Thanks to both, for giving the gift of climbing!
mooser

Trad climber
seattle
Sep 11, 2013 - 01:51pm PT
My mom has never approved of my climbing, even though she approves of me. She's made the promise to never buy any of us (who climb in the family) any climbing gear for Christmas or birthdays, and has held to it quite well.

My dad (and mom, really)instilled in us a great love for the outdoors. He was never a climber, but he did go bouldering with me once at Woodson, and found the whole thing pretty fascinating.

At this moment, my dad is struggling in a Sacramento hospital, having undergone emergency surgery for a subdural hematoma. It's wrecking me pretty bad seeing this loving, scrappy, Nebraska farm boy who became my dad in such a helpless state. I'm hoping and praying for the best, and am having a pretty tough time imagining the worst.

Thanks for posing the question, micronut, and sorry for the rambling. Just feeling pretty raw, and your thread brought out the weepy in me.
Fletcher

Trad climber
The great state of advaita
Sep 11, 2013 - 03:08pm PT
Neither for me either. My dad was very interested in backpacking. Read the Complete Walker, bought an Optimus Stove and other fascinating gear (to me as well). I remember the EMS catalog back in the 70's filled with weird (to me) pitons and such. But he was somebody who gets interested in something but would rarely, if ever, follow through.

I wanted to do all of these kinds of adventures with him. I remember him getting USGS maps and plotting a hike along the length of the Connecticut River. But planning in the living room was as far as it went. The only backpacking I did as a kid was with another friend's dad!

But my dad had planted a seed in me. I read the original edition of Colin Fletcher's The Complete Walker when I was about 11 (and read each update as they came out). I dreamed of doing such walks. Around 30 I realized I was in danger of being like my dad and "thinking about doing it" instead of "just doing it."

So I pledged to get out at least once a month to the backcountry. I was fortunate to have the Sierra just 3 or so hours away, I fulfilled that pledge. I remember my first camping trip, with long day hikes around the Kirkwood area. Even bagged the summit of Round Top and felt scared to be up there, loving it at the same time. Solo backpacking lead to an interest in feeling safer going off trail and up peaks. That lead to YMS classes and the rest is history...

My Mom has a fear of heights and gets vertigo (such as when driving over some pass in the Great Smokey's with my brothers (but not me) and when I took her on a tour of the Marin Headlands). So climbing is most certainly not her thing. But she enjoys being outdoors and hikes regularly, year round, in the Blue Hills near Boston. She even uses snow shoes!

All my kids (four) I have taken camping, hiking, backpacking, skiing and climbing (when they show interest). I never push, just expose. If they want to come back later, I know something latched. They usually do.

My oldest, now 24, is a theatre actress and very busy with that life. She is very selective about guys. Right now she's dating a guy who is both an actor and climber (he was very minorly sponsored for a bit). Oh, if that relationship works out, they're going to be raking in the big bucks with those lines of work!

Thanks for all the great stories.

Cheers,
Eric
ontheedgeandscaredtodeath

Social climber
SLO, Ca
Sep 11, 2013 - 03:35pm PT
Neither of my parents did anything remotely associated with the outdoors. The only time I even camped as a kid was one time with my cousins--at the Indianapolis 500!!!

I did join the boy scouts later and finally got a summer job in Wyoming when I was like 15. A guy I worked with was super into climbing (nicknamed Quatro, from Boulder--anyone??) that finally took me after a couple of years of nagging.
jgill

Boulder climber
Colorado
Sep 11, 2013 - 05:00pm PT
My dad was too busy getting our prairie schooner across the Oregon Trail, protecting my mother and me from hostiles, and keeping the larder full. As we rumbled through the Granite Mountains in Wyoming Territory he pointed to a prominent dome and said, "Son, some day men will climb that for sport."


;>)
hooblie

climber
from out where the anecdotes roam
Sep 11, 2013 - 05:14pm PT
good one gillbo! and second the kudos on thread concept.

my dad blew out of the house at 13, step mom probs. went vagabundo all over the states, a travelling dandy by thumb with country club sensibilities. zeroed in on socal by way of the lifeguard, body builder, '39 santa monica body surfer, hotel cabana boy style. said i'd never make the jackson hole server scene cuz i was not "obsequious enough."

mom signed onto the new jersey girl scout nature trail developement plan and had no pretentions about maintaining dirt free status. hitched with brand new hubby out to cali and called it a honeymoon. sent only son to tree tops without trepidation, and made the old man tow canvas, white gas and trot line till the smores started smokin'.

she totally got the climbing scene, as an unfulfilled gymnast behind the apron anyway. but not pa, no way.
he grasped the concept of taking in the view across the range though, i'll give him that


moacman

Trad climber
Montuckyian Via Canada Eh!
Sep 11, 2013 - 06:02pm PT
Thanx Dad.........

Stevo
rockermike

Trad climber
Berkeley
Sep 11, 2013 - 07:54pm PT
yep, my dad started climbing while at Reed College in Portland. Later became a Mazama climb leader and instructor. I think he climbed Mt Hood maybe 50 times. (more than me - ha), and all the rest of the Pac Northwest peaks at least once. His technical ability topped out at about 5.4 with soft iron pins and hand forged biners.

took me on my first rock climbing trip to Horsetheives butte in 1964 when I was 10.

My mom also made it up Mt Hood, St. Helens and Adams at least once. But never really seemed to be too thrilled.
(edit), she was on the Reno High School ski racing team in the early '50s. Tells stories of boot backing the race course on Mt Rose, back before there were lifts. I guess I got good genes on both sides, though interestingly I've always been a better skier than climber relatively speaking, though I identify more as a climber and have spent a lot more time at it hmmmm
LilaBiene

Trad climber
Technically...the spawning grounds of Yosemite
Sep 11, 2013 - 10:46pm PT
I really love reading this thread. Not sure how many times I've taken a spin through it, but it makes me smile every time. (Mooser, I'm so sorry to hear about your Dad & will be wishing for the best.)

My mom and dad both love to be outdoors, and aside from the forced-marches-I-mean-"hikes" I recall with horror from when I was very young, they had me outside at every opportunity. The closest thing to climbing my Dad ever attempted was Mt. Katahdin, incl. Knife's Edge. I was literally dragged across -- it defied common sense to me at the time. But we did go camping and hiking frequently, as well as downhill skiing, windsurfing, sailing, canoeing (ugh!) and fishing, and probably a whole host of other adventures I'm not able to recall @ the moment.

My birth parents were both climbers, which probably explains why I spent a large portion of my childhood up in trees and endlessly swinging around on monkey bars. ") The muppet is following suit, attempting to climb everything in our apartment. She draws pictures of rocks to be climbed on a daily basis. I'm not sure whether to hope she inherited the adrenaline junkie genes...though life wouldn't be the same without them for me.

So, thanks moms and dads! (Gee, with all that magnificent input, you'd think I would have turned out better!!!) :D
Sierra Ledge Rat

Mountain climber
Old and Broken Down in Appalachia
Sep 12, 2013 - 05:25am PT
None of my relatives were into climbing. I come from a poor immigrant family. I was only the 2nd generation that had enough disposable time and income to pursue a fantasy such as climbing.
khanom

Trad climber
Greeley Hill
Sep 12, 2013 - 07:46am PT
Really interesting posts on this thread.

Neither of my parents were climbers, but my mom made sure I gained a love of camping and the outdoors through the boy scouts and my dad gave me a love of the alpine. He would take us on really long walks in the swiss alps (he lived over there for 40+ years) whenever we were there, even though it took me many years to get back to it. More importantly he was enthusiastic about climbing and even my nomadic lifestyle in recent years. He passed away unexpectedly this week. I had really hoped he'd get to see the mountains up here... I know he would have loved it as I do.

mooser, hang in there.
micronut

Trad climber
Fresno/Clovis, ca
Topic Author's Reply - Sep 12, 2013 - 07:58am PT
wow this thread has been full of touching and poignant stories. A tip of the hat to moms and dads out there who showed their kids the wide open places.

I'm taking my seven year old for an alpine trip this weekend and he is soooo stoked.

Starting at 2yo, I take each kid for a trip, and haven't missed for 13 years. When they are two, its just a walk down a trail and some tent camping. Each year it grows and by five or six they carry their own pack. Now, at 15, my daughter is saying things like...."How hard is the Swiss Arete on Mt. Sill Dad?"

My 7 year old, Bek, just wants to know how much GU a kid can eat in one day. Is six packs too many dad? We will shop at REI tonight (A highlight) and head out Friday for a peak above Courtright.

Coffee and sleepin' bag time with your boys at ten thousand feet is ab...
Coffee and sleepin' bag time with your boys at ten thousand feet is about as good as it gets.
Credit: micronut
Credit: micronut
Messages 1 - 69 of total 69 in this topic
Return to Forum List
Post a Reply
 
Our Guidebooks
Check 'em out!
SuperTopo Guidebooks


Try a free sample topo!

 
SuperTopo on the Web

Review Categories
Recent Route Beta
Recent Gear Reviews