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.
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."
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
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
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
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 about as good as it gets.