Rest In Peace- Glen Dawson Leaves Us at 103


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Larry Nelson

Social climber
Mar 22, 2016 - 01:20pm PT
What a great life, so full of meaningful accomplishments.
mouse from merced

Trad climber
The finger of fate, my friends, is fickle.
Mar 22, 2016 - 01:22pm PT
My respect to Glen Dawson for his achievements.

Also, my condolences to his friends, his family, and the climbing community of Los Angeles, especially.

Royal Robbins wrote this in Volume II of his autobiography titled "Fail Falling," about having climbed the east face of Mount Whitney.

"I now felt I had really become a mountain climber. The east face of Mount Whitney was what all my early reading had prepared me for: a real wall in the high mountains. When I started climbing I had, in my mind's eye, targeted mountains. I had progressed from Stoney Point to Tahquitz, then Yosemite, and now the Palisades and Whitney. From here, I thought it would be just another step to the Alps, the Andes, and the Himalayas, the big peaks."

I'll leave it for you all to make of this what you may in terms of Mr. Dawson's influence on the course of events in climbing in California and the world outside of it.

Social climber
Alameda, California
Mar 22, 2016 - 01:34pm PT
Glen celebrating his 100th birthday in 2012. Your correspondent Mr Grossman in the background.

Farewell to a gentleman for the ages, missed by all.

Social climber
Moorpark, CA.
Mar 22, 2016 - 02:04pm PT
I was so fortunate to meet Glen a few times while helping Cole make the Stoney Point Video.

To say I was impressed is a huge understatement. Here was a man in his mid nineties who had a nice well organized 2-bdr apartment with photos of John Muir, Norman Clyde, Jules Eichorn and other climbing legends on the walls. He was so alert and well organized, he was able to pull a ton of Stoney stuff out and explain at great length about the photos. One of the photos shows him jumping across one of the back canyons at Stoney, he told us a story about how a Chesterfield Cigarette advertising executive who had seen the photo and offered him $200 to become the "Chesterfield Man" was so surprised to have him turn down the offer. Glen you see was a non-smoker, and even way back in 1935 he knew they were bad for you. He said to us "I couldn't condone smoking" "the ad man came back with an offer for $80 to endorse Lipton Tea" "I said yes"

I have a copy of one of his books that he so graciously gave to me. A book of letters written to his young niece while serving with the 10th in Italy. One needs to read between the lines to sense Glen's fear and horror at the situation he was in.

I will always cherish that book because of who wrote it and who gave it to me.

Rest in peace Glen Dawson


Mountain climber
Mar 22, 2016 - 02:23pm PT
I wish I'd made it to the bookstore during my years in the southland.
a great person, and a great bookstore.

Mar 22, 2016 - 02:26pm PT
Glen was a pioneer, a legend, and a gentleman. He lived and love climbing, and was a fine ambassador for our sport.
I have done a few of his routes, and have always had a strong admiration for what he did as a teen, in tennis shoes, and vintage gear.

RIP Mr. Dawson; you have earned your rest. Most importantly - Thank You!
Peter Haan

Trad climber
Santa Cruz, CA
Mar 22, 2016 - 07:00pm PT
This terrific man was almost 104.

Sport climber
Shetville , North of Los Angeles
Mar 22, 2016 - 08:50pm PT
A friend in Pasadena worked on some Sierra Club booklets with Dawson back in the 90's...Glen said that he got invited on all those climbs because he was small , strong , stupid and would do whatever the other climbers wanted him to do... 103 is a long life ..salute...

Mar 22, 2016 - 08:53pm PT
I am looking at the 2009 mortality table for males. The table stops at 100. Only 1% of us reach 100.

At 100 all the kids with whom you grew up are gone.

Mountain climber
Olympia, WA
Mar 22, 2016 - 09:05pm PT

With friends, for a change. Thanks for sticking around for us, Glen!
Norman Claude

Mar 22, 2016 - 09:08pm PT
I met and talked with Glen, brother Jules, Dave Brower and Dick Leonard as part of my pilgrimage to the past.

I've also had the immense pleasure and honor to chat with Tom Hornbein, Peter Hann, The Bird, Long, recently Kauk, Todd Bibler, and on and on.

I did the second ascent of Glen and Jules route on Devils Crag 2. 5.9 unprotected climbing. Jules and Glen gave me the blow by blow account.

You young bucks really need to seek out and talk with the elders. Werner of course was there during the stone master (I hate that moniker) age in the Valley, and John Bragg is still out in the Gunks, Mark Chapman, Kevin, Ed Baby Berry. Oh yea and Doug Robinson. You the Man!

You have no idea what it's like to have Chuck Pratt or the likes tell you what it was like to lead Twilight Zone.......

Go see them soon. They won't last forever.

P.S. Roy- I owe you a visit

Sport climber
Shetville , North of Los Angeles
Mar 22, 2016 - 09:14pm PT
Todd Bibbler is the twilight zone...!

Social climber
chica de chico, I don't claim to be a daisy.
Mar 22, 2016 - 09:30pm PT
Much Respect....

*Rest in peace* Mr Glen Dawson...

Technically expert, safe belayer, can lead if easy
Mar 22, 2016 - 09:33pm PT
'Mechanic's Route', Tahquitz.

First 5.8, with tennis shoes and laid rope.

Proof that there are old, bold climbers.

RIP, good sir.
Chris Jones

Social climber
Glen Ellen, CA
Mar 22, 2016 - 10:07pm PT
What an amazing run ... and a very friendly guy. Altho many may know the people in TMJesse's photo posted above, for those that don't:
Back row: unknown, unknown, Glen Dawson, unknown, unknown.
Front row: Robert Underhill, Norman Clyde, Jules Eichorn, unknown.

Although far from certain, I suspect this photo was taken on the 1931 Sierra Club "High Trip." This would explain the pack animals, the number of climbers at a time when there basically weren't any, and perhaps most tellingly the then-ubiquitous steel Sierra Club cup attached to the belt of the guy on the left. It was at this 1931 "High Trip" that Underhill gave instruction to the Sierra Club climbers on rope-handling. After the trip was over, Clyde, Dawson, Eichorn and Underhill headed up to the then-unclimbed east face of Mt. Whitney. And the rest is history ...

Trad climber
Nothing creative to say
Mar 22, 2016 - 10:53pm PT
Thx Chris J.

We should all be so fortunate as to have great backcountry experiences as Glen Dawson.

I've had some great ones, but only because the Forefathers of my climbing had done what they did. I thank them all!

TFPU Steve G.

Mountain climber
Mar 22, 2016 - 11:49pm PT
Such a badass pioneer!

Before roads and easy access, SAR,...

[Click to View YouTube Video]
Charlie D.

Trad climber
Western Slope, Tahoe Sierra
Mar 23, 2016 - 05:39am PT
^^^awesome Terry, Glen well represented an era of gentlemen and scholarly types while at the same time pushed the standard. Dick Jones and Glen's ascent of the Mechanics Route still sticks out in my mind as being incredibly bold for its time in the late 30's. As a young pimpled faced high school kid we climbed it in the mid sixties thinking if those old farts did it surely we could!!! Ha! It scared the sh*t out of us but did manage to top out with bloody knees and new esteem for the climbers of that era. As the decades pass the mountain lore of times long gone become more and more valuable, Glen Dawson no doubt is a big part of the fabric. My sincerest condolences to family and those who knew and loved the man that lived life well.

Berg Heil,

Charlie D.

Mountain climber
Mar 23, 2016 - 08:01am PT
In 1978 ,John Fisher & I found a first ascent record in a film can on Bivouac Peak between Middle Palisade and Clyde Peak signed on July 30,1930 by Jules Eichorn & Glen Dawson . Only Don Jensen & clients had also signed it in the 1960s. It was still there in 1979 when we completed the full Palisades Traverse . Glen Dawson was only 17 years old when he & Jules Eichorn made their first ascents in the Palisades during the Sierra Club High Trip . It was the oldest first ascent record still in place I've ever seen .
I later spoke with him on the telephone about a rare Ansel Adams first edition & was very impressed with his courtesy and knowledge about that matter.

Trad climber
Santa Clara, CA
Mar 23, 2016 - 10:40am PT
God bless ya, Glen! Rest in peace now, you've done quite a bit.

Good man.
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