Climbing 1957-style

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Messages 1 - 135 of total 135 in this topic
Jello

Social climber
No Ut
Topic Author's Original Post - Dec 10, 2006 - 02:05pm PT
Sorting through old files, this image turned up. It's my brother Mike belaying his younger siblings (that would be Greg in the middle and me at the bottom). Mike's using an old (useless) over-the-shoulder belay, and Greg and I are moving together. That's Dad (Ralph) rappelling down past his boys, making sure they're using "proper" technique!? He's also using an over-the-shoulder technique to rap. How did we not die?
Chicken Skinner

Trad climber
Yosemite
Dec 10, 2006 - 02:19pm PT
Nice photo Jello! Very cool.

Ken
matty

Big Wall climber
Valencia, CA
Dec 10, 2006 - 02:21pm PT
Bad ass family jello, what did your mom think of this?
Jello

Social climber
No Ut
Topic Author's Reply - Dec 10, 2006 - 02:31pm PT
Thanks, Chicken.

Dad had Mom convinced it was safe, Matty, so Mom never seemed too concerned for us.
Ropeboy

Trad climber
Fresno CA
Dec 10, 2006 - 02:43pm PT
I would be proud of a family photo like that. Sure, rock climing techniques gets better with each decade and we welcome the improvements. The photo is also a strong reminder that chalk, harnesses, and rock shoes are NOT essential for rock climbing.
Jaybro

Social climber
The West
Dec 10, 2006 - 02:43pm PT
Very cool! kinda Spencer Tracy/Robert Wagner

Was that on one of the Ogden crags? Looks metamorphic.

In 1957 I was trying to heelhook out of my playpen.
Jello

Social climber
No Ut
Topic Author's Reply - Dec 10, 2006 - 02:49pm PT
I agree, Rope, you don't actually need much gear to go rock climbing. It's nice that it has become safer, though.

That's Ogden limestone, Jay, but we have a lot of quartzite as well, in the area.
Mimi

climber
Dec 10, 2006 - 03:00pm PT
Jello, cool photo and story. Did your dad pursue climbing actively before taking on family life? Did you (and your brothers) climb with your dad as you got older and more accomplished?

Cheers,
Mimi
ground_up

Trad climber
mt. hood /baja
Dec 10, 2006 - 04:17pm PT
" How did we not die?"

That is too funny ! I'm sure a guy of your experiences has said that more than a few times over the years...classic stuff , thank you for sharing Jello! It's stuff like this that make ST worthwhile..
mooser

Trad climber
seattle
Dec 10, 2006 - 04:18pm PT
Man, Jello, that photo was taken the year I was born. Your Dad looks kind of like my Dad did when he was mowing the lawn (except that...well...your Dad isn't pushing a lawn mower, and my Dad didn't have rope over his shoulder)! No stylin' climbing clothes in those days, but everything must have seemed like it was new, unexplored, and all adventure. Great pic!
Mighty Hiker

Social climber
Vancouver, B.C.
Dec 10, 2006 - 04:33pm PT
Very nice! A lot of stuff in the picture looks familiar - wish I had similar photos from when I started. Not until the early 70s, when I was barely a teenager. It was with a mountaineering club, and given that, as well as that B.C. was a bit of a void then in terms of equipment and techniques, there weren't a lot of differences. Body (Dulfersitz) rappels, laid (twisted) ropes, hip belays, tie in with bowline on a coil, etc etc. Though we knew enough not to do overtheshouldernottiedononthebrinkoftheprecipice belays - that was something the guides in the Rockies supposedly did.

Well, techniques and equipment were still better than before, and soon got a lot better.
Jello

Social climber
No Ut
Topic Author's Reply - Dec 10, 2006 - 04:46pm PT
Hi Mimi-

Dad pursued everything at once, all the time. Back in the 'thirties, when he was 16 and his brother, George was a little older, they worked and lived on a ranch near St Anthony, Idaho. One day, they hitched up a buggy and drove over to the Tetons. The next day they climbed the Grand in cowboy boots, using a lariat as a rope.

During the war, Dad was commander of a Navy fighter squadron.
He met and flew with some guys who were good climbers, like Dick Pownall. Some of these guys worked for Exum in the summer, and after the war, Dad would spend some time every year, climbing in the Tetons. Any of his kids were allowed to go along on these trips, and climb if they wanted to. Dad took me up the Exum Ridge on the Grand when I was seven. He carried a 100' length of 1/4" nylon rope, to keep me safe. I was fully prepared to catch his fall, should he take one, on that little string!

Another time, in the mid-fifties, Dad decided to climb Rainier. At 5pm on a Friday afternoon, he locked the door to his law office in Ogden Utah and climbed into his newly acquired Hudson Hornet, and began the 1,000-mile drive, pre-interstate system. When he arrived at Paradise the next day, the mountain was enveloped in a storm cloud, but the party he planned to join, had started up anyway, so Dad took off after them, arriving at Camp Muir about the same time they did. After a few hours' sleep, the team got up and climbed to the top in really rough weather, but still made it down to Paradise by mid-afternoon. This allowed Dad just enough time to drive back home, and appear freshly showered and shaved to present a case before a county judge at 9am. His old flying buddies used to say that when Dad drove on those long trips, he was really just "flying low". The speedometer would register over 100mph for long stretches at a time, day or night.

My brothers and I did pretty quickly surpass Dad in our climbing abilities. Greg and I took him on a new variation to the Jensen Ridge on Symmetry Spire in 1965. The variation was about 5.9, and it was more than Dad wanted, although he got up it OK. From that time on, he mostly lived vicariously through his boy's adventures. His very last climb, was in 1979, when he went to Ama Dablam with us. He had heart disease and wasn't supposed to go above basecamp, but I wasn't too surprised to see him arrive at camp 2 at about 20,000' one afternoon. After I chastised him for jeopardizing the expedition by this stunt, we spent a special night, along with Greg, who was filming the trip.

Dad had a fatal heart-attack a few years later, while skiing with his daughter, Lil, at our local area, Snowbasin. After the ski patrolmen had loaded him into the tobaggan, Dad, knowing he was dying, begged them to take him over the old Porqupine gelande jump, which was just below where they were at the time. Of course, despite Dad's entreaties, they could'nt really grant his wish. He set a high bar for his kids, and helped us gain the skills and strength to make it over.
Mimi

climber
Dec 10, 2006 - 04:55pm PT
Awesome Jeff! The fine family fruit didn't fall very far from that excellent tree.
Roger Breedlove

climber
Cleveland Heights, Ohio
Dec 10, 2006 - 05:06pm PT
What a great photo, Jeff. Do I see leather shoulder pads to protect from the Dulfersitz?

That's considered aid nowadays, don'cha you know?

Roger
Jello

Social climber
No Ut
Topic Author's Reply - Dec 10, 2006 - 05:06pm PT
Mimi- you called me a fruit! LOL! I resemble that statement.

-FruitJello
Mimi

climber
Dec 10, 2006 - 05:11pm PT
hahaha Jeff! I was going to point out that the Jello still had the marks of the original mold, but I changed it.

What fine FruitJello!

How many other fighter pilots in your extended family?
N0_ONE

Social climber
Utah
Dec 10, 2006 - 05:18pm PT
Right on Jeff! That's funny stuff! What a great picture!

Yeah, you've been watched over buy some higher power!


Edit. I don't know how I missed the story the first time I read through. Cool, great story!

pc

climber
East of Seattle
Dec 10, 2006 - 06:13pm PT
Very cool Jello! Do you happen to remember what you were using for anchors?

pc
Jello

Social climber
No Ut
Topic Author's Reply - Dec 10, 2006 - 06:19pm PT
Thanks eKat, Roger and Steve. It's fun to reminisce with people who can get it, and give such positive feedback.

Mimi- Dad was the only fighter pilot in the family, but here's another story about him:

Back in the 'Fifties again, Glenn Exum told Dad about his plans to build a more permanent hut for his guides and clients, on the the Lower Saddle. Dad had the brilliant idea to help Glenn out by way of dropping the needed bags of cement on the saddle from the belly of a C-130 transport plane, that he "borrowed" from the Navy during one of his reserve officer training sessions. To make a long story short, only a few of the bags actually landed on the saddle, the rest merely flying over it near ground-level at 150 mph, absolutely terrifying the guides that were up there to recieve the gifts from heaven. Of course, those bags that actually hit the saddle bust into huge balls of dust, resembling small bombs exploding.

I wish that event had been caught on film...a truly brilliant hair-brained scheme! There is still today a rock up there that closely resembles the solidified remains of a burst bag of concrete. Take a look around next time you're there - you'll find it.
Mimi

climber
Dec 10, 2006 - 06:31pm PT
Holy moly Jeff! What a wild tale. I will look for that historical cairn marker next time I'm up there.
john hansen

climber
Dec 10, 2006 - 06:58pm PT
I was just checking out Michael Kennedy's artical in the 79 AAJ on your attempt on Lotak with George Lowe and Jim Dononi.
It's great to see where it all started. Can't wait for the book.
Roger Breedlove

climber
Cleveland Heights, Ohio
Dec 10, 2006 - 07:02pm PT
OMG, Jeff, that is so funny. You don't need a movie. Your description is good enough. A new objective hazard for mountain guides...80 lbs bags of cement flying through the air.

Your statement "How did we not die?" takes on a whole new meaning.

Still laughing.
TYeary

Mountain climber
Calif.
Dec 10, 2006 - 07:51pm PT
Great thread Jeff. Belay technics not exactly Freedom of the Hills approved, though! Sometimes I wonder how I survied the early years too.
Tony
Toker Villain

Big Wall climber
Toquerville, Utah
Dec 10, 2006 - 08:05pm PT
I'm jealous Jeff.

I never got to climb with my grandfather, but I have a photo of him roping up for a glacier crossing in 1928.
My dad was always talking about taking us on an African safari but buying the elephant gun pictured in R&I was about as far as he got. lol




What a lot of people don't realize is that Jeff is a hardcore traditionalist and only last week rappelled down Touchstone using the same dulfersitz technique. Its really gotten him walking funny.
Tarbuster

climber
right here, right now
Dec 10, 2006 - 08:48pm PT
Bravo!
Ultra natty family portrait, great stories.
Carry on.
Conner

Social climber
on the road
Dec 10, 2006 - 09:02pm PT
J- just checking in on Amy and saw this thread at the top of the list. Very cool stories you wend about your Dad.... surely they can go in one of the books you have planned... Cheers, C

Largo

Sport climber
Venice, Ca
Dec 10, 2006 - 09:07pm PT
That man lived LIFE. Should we all be like "dad."

JL
Jaybro

Social climber
The West
Dec 10, 2006 - 09:08pm PT
Great story, Jello, keep 'em coming.
Was there a hut at Camp Muir back then? OR, for that matter at the lower saddle of the grand, when you were 7?

This is the stuff (events with our kids) we all need to create, to pass on.

For me, hiking up Longs peak with my Dad when I was 13, (cables up /keyhole down) went a long way toward making climbing a big part of my life.
golsen

Social climber
kennewick, wa
Dec 10, 2006 - 09:49pm PT
Jeff, thanks for sharing. That pic is awesome.

My first time climbing with a rope was when my bros and I were out scrambling around in Deaf Smith Canyon. You know that one between Big and Little Cottonwood. We had taken my dads Lariat (he was a vet) and my big brother tied it around me and lowered me off a cliff. Not sure why I got into climbing after that experience, doesnt bode well for my intelligence.

Edit: Jello, I bet you are still the youngest to climb the Grand. I admit, I thought about breaking that record. My youngest son Trevor was dragged around climbing since he was a couple months old. I used to place candies on the trail ahead of him when he was young to coax him along. Alas, I didnt have enough candies in my pack for the Grand. That love for hiking and climbing needs to come from within, and while my kids love other outdoor persuits climbing is not high on the list...
Ouch!

climber
Dec 10, 2006 - 11:10pm PT
" Its really gotten him walking funny"

Magnum wedgie.
Jello

Social climber
No Ut
Topic Author's Reply - Dec 10, 2006 - 11:54pm PT
Thanks, all. Dad was a seriously twisted but rightious dude. I've got loads of stories to tell about/on him. He and Mom were quite the pair - a wild disciplinarian Republican with the heart of a true liberal, and a devoted Lutheren ex-socialite from Seattle who gave up a career in theatre and dancing to throw her lot in with a Mormon athiest and raise a big passel of kids in the cultural wilds of northern Utah. But that whole saga will go in my next book, which Connie alluded to, which will be a series of portraits of my fantastic partners in a life of climb. But I've gotta get this damn book finished first...

(Hope you're having a great trip down-under, Connie. MERRY CHRISTMAS! Jeff)
Mungeclimber

Trad climber
one pass away from the big ditch
Dec 11, 2006 - 01:41am PT
This thread has been closed until further notice pending a new chapter by Jello.

that is all.
Patrick Sawyer

climber
Originally California now Ireland
Dec 11, 2006 - 08:50am PT
Cool Jeff, a Hudson Hornet. My brother had one of those in the early 1970s, I think it was a 1951 or something.
RRK

Trad climber
Talladega, Al
Dec 11, 2006 - 09:32am PT
Cool shot and stories. You ought to get the family together for a new picture at the same spot- "The Lowe Family Picnic, Part 2" - dulfersitz and all. I had a scar for a long long time from my dulfersizt escape - I would have paid a bunch for that leather pad at the time.

Here's a bit of advice for anyone who still has parents (or grandparents) living. Get out the old video camera and pay them a visit. Put it on a tripod, set it to run and let them be the "talking head". Tell them you're doing a family history and they'll be happy to talk. Start 'em as early as they can remember and just let them tell stories about the "old days" till you run out of tape. I got one of my dad and also one of his mother before they both died and it's something that I would go back into a burning building to retrieve. We all get together and watch them during the holidays - It's like they're right there in the room with you. It doesn't cost much so get going - the clock's ticking. You won't regret it.

RRK
Jello

Social climber
No Ut
Topic Author's Reply - Dec 11, 2006 - 10:56am PT
GREAT suggestion, RRK!

Kevin, you've got a 2-year old girl? Fantastic! Daughters are wonderfull - mine's 18 and in college now.

-Jello
Toker Villain

Big Wall climber
Toquerville, Utah
Dec 11, 2006 - 11:16am PT
18 huh?


Hmmmmm.
Steve Grossman

Trad climber
Seattle, WA
Dec 11, 2006 - 11:20am PT
Ain't love grand and improbable!

I woke up laughing this morning over the concrete strafing run! Great story, Jeff. Very cool to have climbing roots extending so far back. I got my start by hanging around the local climbing shop, the Summit Hut, asking silly questions until somebody eventually took me out either to begin my education as an alpinist or to dispose of my twelve year old annoyance in a tragic but blameless little accident.

Many of my close friends are climbing with their kids and it really warms my heart to see it. I too can't wait for your book to come out. If your forum posts are any indication, it should be a howling good read!
Chiloe

Trad climber
Lee, NH
Dec 11, 2006 - 01:04pm PT
Dad had a fatal heart-attack a few years later, while skiing with his daughter, Lil, at our local area, Snowbasin. After the ski patrolmen had loaded him into the tobaggan, Dad, knowing he was dying, begged them to take him over the old Porqupine gelande jump, which was just below where they were at the time. Of course, despite Dad's entreaties, they could'nt really grant his wish.

What a story, to go with the picture. Thanks.
N0_ONE

Social climber
Utah
Dec 11, 2006 - 04:40pm PT
Bwa ha ha!!!

Ron your killing me! 18 Hmmmm!

I'm still laughing!
jstan

climber
Dec 11, 2006 - 05:41pm PT
OT:
There is an alternative to the Dulfersitz I have seen used in recent times that seems quite reasonable, for short rappels on two strands. Put the rope through between the legs and then bring the brake hand up in front of you so you are basically sitting on the rope with one leg. By doing a reverse one arm you can even take the pressure off your leg. Have never looked for a writeup of this but it must be out there.

Cheers,
chappy

Social climber
ventura
Dec 11, 2006 - 08:12pm PT
Nice photo and related stories Jeff. I remember using the Dulfersitz method when I first started climbing. We would actualy do short overhanging free rappels!Pretty crazy. It reminds me of a term Kevin coined. The Yabositz. Yabo liked doing these ultra low sit down starts to boulder problems and Kev came up with therm Yabositz to describe the technique. Hey remember when you, Kev, Mike and I all met trolling under the Widows Tears way back when?
matty

Big Wall climber
Valencia, CA
Dec 11, 2006 - 11:11pm PT
Jeff, your dad ever know Jody Langford's Dad?

http://www128.pair.com/r3d4k7/JLangford.html

Jody used to post on here alot. His Dad was a ranger in the Tetons.

Matt

Jello

Social climber
No Ut
Topic Author's Reply - Dec 12, 2006 - 12:52am PT
Thank YOU, Chiloe.

Don't go there, NO, a man's duaghter is not fair game...

Mark Chapman, it's been too long. Of course I remember meeting you guys lurking around the Tears. And of course I'm jealous of the great adventure you and Kevin had on the first ascent. Actually, more proud of your effort, than jealous. What a beauty! Wish we had gotten to do a few more climbs together. Guess it's good to be thankfull for the ones we had.

Dad probably knew Jim Langford, Matt, but I don't know for sure.
Klimmer

Mountain climber
San Diego
Dec 12, 2006 - 01:49am PT
Jello,

Classic inspirational image and stories.

I sure hope I can be the kinda dad your dad was for my kids. My daughter Chamonix is 6, and my son Parker is 4. I got them on skiis at the age of 2, and bouldering very low stuff with dad spotting and sometimes on top rope. They enjoy all of it.

They're getting to do so much more than when I was their age, and so it should be.

Paragliding is off limits until they can prove to me they can safely drive first (late teens). Gotta have a good head on and thinking straight to fly.

Klimmer
Toker Villain

Big Wall climber
Toquerville, Utah
Dec 12, 2006 - 10:29am PT
Well Jeff you know I'm only kidding around.
Truth be told I'm beginning to understand why the french say a woman under 30 is an egg not yet cooked (although that's not to say I agree).

But talk about 1957 style!

She's eighteen Jeff, and you probably think she's still a virgin!!





(Now just TRY to erase from your mind the image of some pimply faced frat boy violating her purity and then rushing out to describe the deed to his fellow pledges! Ain't love grand?)lol
Jello

Social climber
No Ut
Topic Author's Reply - Dec 12, 2006 - 10:59am PT
Ron- It's not the pimply-faced frat boy image that bothers me. That's the proper order of things. It's actually the leering old predatory man image I don't like, for my daughter or anyone else's. Now, back to this feel-good celebration of Leave-it-to-Beaver alpine family life.

Cheers, Old Man!

Toker Villain

Big Wall climber
Toquerville, Utah
Dec 12, 2006 - 11:39am PT
I wonder if perhaps it does linger in your subconscience.

After all, you're the one that just brought BEAVER CLEAVER.








(as for being an old predator, aren't those the best kind?)
Jello

Social climber
No Ut
Topic Author's Reply - Dec 12, 2006 - 04:46pm PT
Here's the Old Man, Ralph Lowe, circa 1975, when he was about the age I am, now. During WWII, when he was stationed in the Aleutians, he ran down a fox in the winter snow outside the barracks, and kept it as a pet.


Here he is keeping us all safe while standing un-anchored on a loose block:

With safety techniques wired, we were cut loose to climb on our own

Me at 14 following a new variant to the Molar Tooth on the East Ridge of the Grand that one of my brothers had just led.

Still begs the question: How did we not die?



Ouch!

climber
Dec 12, 2006 - 04:59pm PT
Cool thread with nice pictures. Takes me back to black and white picture days. If you could sit down or lean back and get your feet wedged, you could make some hefty body belays.
Jello

Social climber
No Ut
Topic Author's Reply - Dec 12, 2006 - 05:05pm PT
True enough, Ouch, but I think Dad felt it was better to stand right at the edge of oblivion - every opportunity - to get the full effect.
Ouch!

climber
Dec 12, 2006 - 05:17pm PT
Back in the 50s, a buddy made a rope twisting device. Looked something like this as I recall. He made me one about 100 feet long out of parachute shrouds. I kept it for years and used it for everything. Even roping horses and cows and some climbing. Kind of a crude drawing.

Jello

Social climber
No Ut
Topic Author's Reply - Dec 12, 2006 - 05:43pm PT
eKat, the truth is, I'm not yet 81*. I remember both Keds and Converse. Had to get them dirty right away, before other kids saw you wearing them.

-OldButNotStaleJello








*graduated hs in '68
Toker Villain

Big Wall climber
Toquerville, Utah
Dec 12, 2006 - 06:44pm PT
Jeff, you never told me your dad was in the Aleutians in WWII.
Wow!

That was tough duty. Ousting the japanese diversionary force in '42 cost us over 600 men.
Jello

Social climber
No Ut
Topic Author's Reply - Dec 12, 2006 - 08:56pm PT
Ron- you never told me your Dad was one of the great violinists of the twentieth century until a couple of years ago. Seems we never really spoke of our fathers - too full of ourselves, maybe?
Jello

Social climber
No Ut
Topic Author's Reply - Dec 12, 2006 - 09:58pm PT
eKaterina- it seems 1950 was a very good year!!!

Ouch, that device looks like a mighty fine tool...

As Dad always used to say: "Have fun, work hard and get smart." He meant in that order, too.

-JelloDad
Toker Villain

Big Wall climber
Toquerville, Utah
Dec 12, 2006 - 09:59pm PT
Full of something no doubt...









edit; Puddle-toaster!
N0_ONE

Social climber
Utah
Dec 12, 2006 - 10:31pm PT
That's insane Jeff.

Did you have many close calls at that young age with dad present?
Jello

Social climber
No Ut
Topic Author's Reply - Dec 12, 2006 - 10:37pm PT
Steve- I can't remember any close calls. He always seemed to have things under control, and instilled in us the absolute need to be responsible for our own actions. When I look at those pictures, though, I still wonder...how did we not die?
RRK

Trad climber
Talladega, Al
Dec 12, 2006 - 10:37pm PT
Ouch - I've made those machines many times in "scouts". That's how they made that "Goldline" stuff. Regular tech info for '50-'60 era kids. I remember how it works if you're short of cash and need a rope. Jello - you've got me by a couple of years (born in '57). Remember PF Flyers - run fast - jump high? My dad was Navy assigned to 1st MAC in the Pacific. Did Guadalcanal, Bouganville, etc. Got the stories on the video I took before he died. (if your dad's still alive then do that NOW) Badass guys beyond belief. Nothing that we can hope to achieve can even remotely approach what they accomplished. If all goes well I'll have a copy of his war diary in the next couple of weeks. If so then it goes down as the best Christmas ever.

oops - gotta go

RRK

N0_ONE

Social climber
Utah
Dec 12, 2006 - 10:42pm PT
Abselutly amazing! It's not like you were climbing clean trade routes either. It was chossy limestone right?
Steve Grossman

Trad climber
Seattle, WA
Dec 13, 2006 - 11:26am PT
RRK do you remember the "action wedge" that made the PF flyers so good?

Jello it is a wonder that any of us survived the early days not to mention the very early days. Not long ago, I came across my original 1/4" goldline rapelling prussik set up and a couple of brake bars! Back before leather gloves went out of style for a few decades.

I really love the shoulder belays, so very European! I have always found it interesting that people like Raffi Bedayn were included in climbing teams for new routes specifically because of their belaying skills during your father's era. We take all of that method and technology for granted these days. Nothing too hip about that California belay!
Chewbongka

climber
लघिमा
Jun 20, 2008 - 12:30am PT
bumpity
Leroy

climber
Jun 20, 2008 - 06:50am PT
They still use the shoulder belay in Europe.A few years ago I saw a brochure with a photo of a guide using it.
captain chaos

climber
Jun 20, 2008 - 11:46am PT
Looks like I missed the first posting by a couple years, but good to see it for the first time, great stories and pictures Jeff. It looks like your early days were ugh... a bit thin on the pro and probably anchors and gear in general? which of course brings me to the same question you have, how did you stay alive, my guess is you had/have a guardian angel who looked after you closely. My father was stationed on a boat in the Aleutians during WWII as well, I'll have to ask him if he ever ran into your dad... Hope all is well my brother- Craig
Ouch!

climber
Jun 20, 2008 - 12:01pm PT
Those old body belays and raps could give you some world class wedgies.
philo

Trad climber
boulder, co.
Jun 20, 2008 - 12:16pm PT
Fabulous thread. Undoubtably some of the coolest climbing pictures I have ever seen. Thank you so much Jello man.

Just one question... How did your dad fire up his boys' passion for climbing?

Of my three kids the older two have mad skills but no interest in climbing.

My youngest, Logan, who just turned 9, Is really eager to ascend. My favorite story of him was when he was 5. We were getting an alpine start for ice climbing in RMNP when he toddled out of bed buck naked pleading "Daddy I wanna go, I wanna go, Please". "Sorry Son but you don't have boots or any gear" I replied. He scurried off in a fluster and returned a moment later wearing my vastly too big Sorels and sporting a sling of about 6 or 7 carabiners over his tiny shoulder. Otherwise still in the buff he again pleaded, with puppy dog eyes, "I wanna go!"

I was just pooping green in 57. The Lowe family rocks! You guys should be considered a national treasure.


Roman

Trad climber
DC
Jun 20, 2008 - 01:49pm PT
Jello, I referenced you and your family just yesterday while teaching a friend of mine how to lead and explaining the history of tri-cams. You guys are an inspiration and this thread and pic are absolutely awesome.
martygarrison

Trad climber
The Great North these days......
Jun 20, 2008 - 03:52pm PT
way cool pic!
scuffy b

climber
just below the San Andreas
Feb 26, 2009 - 04:00pm PT
Too cool to believe.

Who's the photographer?
Double D

climber
Feb 26, 2009 - 04:55pm PT
Jeff...that's so cool! So let me get this all straight, basically 1/4" clothesline with a very positive attitude and of course the #1 rule of climbing, "Though shall not fall"

Cool story on your heritage. Thanks.





nutjob

Stoked OW climber
San Jose, CA
Feb 26, 2009 - 04:57pm PT
Wonderful pictures, wonderful stories about dad! I'd really like to hear more of these early adventures.
scuffy b

climber
just below the San Andreas
Feb 26, 2009 - 05:03pm PT
Don't be giving me a shoulder belay, that's all, Nutjob.
hoipolloi

climber
A friends backyard with the neighbors wifi
Feb 26, 2009 - 07:31pm PT
really awesome photo.

How DID you not die?!
Patrick Oliver

Boulder climber
Fruita, Colorado
Feb 27, 2009 - 01:31am PT
Jeff,
Don't make me have to come over there and
sharpen your toenails. I beg to differ with your
initial comment that those old shoulder belays
were useless. That was the best thing going for
a long time, and all the best climbers used them.
I used them for a long time and caught many a fall,
as well. It's logical to have the rope over your
shoulder if the direction of pull on the rope, from
a fall, is straight down. Of course most of this
is tongue in cheek, but partly serious. Look at the
old photos of Rebuffat, for example, with his shoulder
belays and shoulder-crotch body rappels. Or look
at those pictures of Eiger climbers or Saxon, etc.,
and early British photos. Those were
the days. Today climbers have it too easy, all this
technology that robs us of the mystery...
Or whatever...
Your dad was a cool dude. He's the kind of guy I would
like to read about, a real bio... another of our
"greatest generation."
Toker Villain

Big Wall climber
Toquerville, Utah
Feb 27, 2009 - 01:37am PT
Sorry Pat, no shoulder belay for you.

(I think it's good policy to CATCH your partner.)

As a guy that learned on laid ropes, I'll take all the high tech I can manage.
Steve Grossman

Trad climber
Seattle, WA
Feb 27, 2009 - 11:48am PT
Even the more reliable california hip belay didn't stay hip for long fortunately! It always seems like the precarious lean out over the edge for a better view of the climber below is the source of the real peril.

I personally love the swiss arm rappel and used to use it on the Apron where the normal rules of climbing don't apply! Bergsteigen anyone?
RDB

Trad climber
Iss WA
Feb 28, 2009 - 12:00pm PT
I had seen this thread and knowing what may be coming, I waited.

Jeff, what a great story about your Dad and a tiny bit about your brothers! A wonderful great read, thanks.
rgold

Trad climber
Poughkeepsie, NY
Feb 28, 2009 - 12:50pm PT
Fantastic shots, Jello. As a '61 high-school graduate, they bring back memories...

I went off climbing as a teenager with knowledge gleaned from the few books available at the time, in a pair of mountain boots, a stubai hammer, three soft-iron blade pitons with virtually no taper, a ring angle, maybe six free steel oval biners, a couple of tied quarter inch rope over-the shoulder slings, and a goldline rope that was stiff enough to use as a clip stick if we had ever thought of that. I'd guess that half the belays I set up where well-braced but unanchored. (But they were hip belays. I either learned or decided on my own that shoulder belays made little sense.)

As to why we didn't die, of course some of it is just luck, but another part is that, back in the day, we didn't expect much from our climbing systems, and we climbed in a way that strove not to test them.
jogill

climber
Colorado
Feb 28, 2009 - 10:38pm PT

What a wonder any of us are still around, Jeff! This was taken either 1956 or 1957, perhaps on the Direct Jensen Ridge on Symmetry Spire in the Tetons. I think my shoes were Cortinas, but I'm not sure. They may have been a pair of J. C. Higgins work boots. The rope is attached to a simple piece of webbing around my waist, or maybe just tied with a bowline.
Patrick Sawyer

climber
Originally California now Ireland
Mar 1, 2009 - 01:06am PT
A Hudson Hornet. Your dad had good taste in cars.

One of my brothers, Mac, had a 1947 Hornet back in the early 1970s. He also had a 1948 Pontiac straight eight he bought in Sun Valley, Idaho or Utah, I can't remember, as he had gone to Idaho to see his then girlfriend, Muffet Hemingway (yeah, Ernie was her grandad) in a Ford Falcon painted as an American flag. It broke down and he came back with the Pontiac.

In 1971, when I was 15, we drove that Pontiac to Canada with a big red canoe strapped on top, but we were refused entry by the Canadian authorities (the car, our long hair and two of us being minors, Kim - 17 - and me - even though we had our parents permission to travel) the Canucks didn't want us, but that is a different story.

What color was the Hornet Jello? Was it one of those two-tone jobs?
Jello

Social climber
No Ut
Topic Author's Reply - Mar 1, 2009 - 01:07am PT
Nice comments, all. Especially nice to read thoughtful/playful comments from other old fogey's on this board, including PA, RGold and Jogill. Those were wonderful, simple times, when safety was not looked for or found in gear, but rather was expected of each individual as alluded to by RGold, etc. Really, good climbers back then DID NOT LET GO OF THE MOUNTAIN! And they knew their limits and climbed well within them. Even with this attitude, Harold Goodrow climbed Goodrow's Wall (5.10C) free in 1949. John Gill climbed the Thimble (12A) in the early 60's, Pat Ament climbed Supremacy Crack (5.11), and Greg Lowe climbed Macabre Roof (12C) in 1967. Innocent times, but powerful...

Growing up in the Lowe household was interesting also for the pets we had. Before I graduated high school at the age of 17, and immediately headed off to California to join the flowered hippy masses, our home and grounds were at one time or other host to the following critters (and the list is not at all exhaustive): rattlesnakes (which Greg and I used to milk into mason jars - why? I don't know. Greg's index finger got snagged once, and the finger went black and purple streaks ran up his arm), iguanas up to three feet long, alligators and crocodiles that eventually grew even larger, blue racers, boa constrictors, king snakes, blow snakes, garder snakes, other snakes and lizards, horny toads, normal (platonic?) toads, frogs of several varieties, armadillos, squirrels, chipmunks, skunks, lambs, lions (of the mountain variety), dingoes, bats, owls, eagles, hawks, foxes, coyotes, parakeets, dogs big and small, cats, badgers, a three-legged bobcat, wolves, fish, horses, cattle and many others.

Pride of place eventually went to a bear named Bruno who dad used to walk on a leash on the trails behind the house until he grew so big that eventually Bruno was walking Dad. In my 15th and 16th year I helped Dad build a motel, called the Rim Rock,on the edge of Capitol Reef National Park. The wolves, lions, Bruno and some of the other animals were retired there in a classic American "Roadside Attraction"-type of private zoo. Dad sold the motel in the mid-70's, but you can still go stay there, today. Not too sentimental - when Bruno finally had to be put down - Dad put up the meat in nice little packages and shared it widely with family, friends and neighbors. Bruno was tough and really gamey, but I felt honor-bound to take some of his great spirit into my body.

All of the above, and much more besides, is absolutely true.

-JelloFeelsBadForCaptiveAnimalsButThat'sTheWayItWasBackThen
Patrick Sawyer

climber
Originally California now Ireland
Mar 1, 2009 - 02:44pm PT
A certain person, for whatever reasons, wants to bump the "Doug Robinson, Sean Jones, rap bolt South face of Half Dome!" thread ;-), when this thread is so much a better bump.
Patrick Sawyer

climber
Originally California now Ireland
Mar 1, 2009 - 05:15pm PT
bump again
Toker Villain

Big Wall climber
Toquerville, Utah
Mar 1, 2009 - 05:28pm PT
Who was it who said, "I never name something I might have to eat"?



Pretty timely that hear "the rest of the story". You never told me that Bruno went to Capitol Reef (and the NPS was down on climbers for the next 20 years. Bruno didn't ,... naw,.. just wishful thinking I guess.)
guido

Trad climber
Santa Cruz
Mar 1, 2009 - 08:30pm PT
Jeff

Have really enjoyed the "oldies but goodies" and the family stories. You were so fortunate to have a dad that introduced you to some of the better things in life before you could be tainted by the norm. My dad was at sea most of my life and when he was home it was at home he stayed. A wonderful man, but made it difficult to get out at such a young age.

Foott and I got started climbing in the Boy Scouts at a summer work camp for a winter ski area in 1957. One has to remember that RR also started in the Boy Scouts. Learned how to rappel on hemp and with old steel shackles. Showed up at Indian Rock with our "state of the art gear" and were fortunate to run into Roper who told us we were close to killing ourselves with our gear and technique. Thus began a relationship with the old Rock Climbing Section of the Sierra Club and a host of "Dads". Roper, Al Macdonald, Steck, Carl Weissner and an endless group of older and wiser individuals that altered our lives forever.

The following photos are from 1957-58, when our climbing turf encompassed the Berkeley Hills and Pinnacles, and we had just begun to venture out into the wonders of Yosemite and beyond.

Early days at Indian rock, below I-12

State of the art shoes and the only was we knew how to rappel.

Grizzly Peak, going down was so much fun, why would anyone want to do anything else?

Pinnacle Rock, Berkeley Hills-new shoes and still working on that technique.

Footski throwing off the rappel rope, Pinnacles National Monument


cheers

Joe McKeown








Reilly

Mountain climber
Monrovia, CA
Mar 1, 2009 - 08:55pm PT
Jeff,
What a menagerie! Were you Gregg's 'doctor'? You probably didn't wear helmets riding your bicycles either, right? HO.

Thanks so much for sharing,

Reilly

ps I'm sure you don't remember when we met at Cliff Hudson's (or maybe Geeting's) BITD. Kayleen was there (we were just friends) along with the bunch of russkies I was herding.
Steve Grossman

Trad climber
Seattle, WA
Aug 22, 2009 - 11:51am PT
Exquisite Jello Bump!
Chiloe

Trad climber
Lee, NH
Aug 22, 2009 - 11:57am PT
In our garage when I was growing up, my Dad kept a 120' coil of Columbia white nylon climbing rope. I don't think he had used it much, taken it on a few trips to the Maroon Bells or Longs Peak ... but that rope cast a real spell on me. Eventually some friends and I borrowed it for out own "climbing" experiments, although we did not yet know how to tie knots, belay or rappel.

An odd part of the story is that the same rope is still in my Dad's garage. I get nostalgic just seeing it.
Steve Grossman

Trad climber
Seattle, WA
Aug 22, 2009 - 05:24pm PT
Love those Little Little Joe shots, too! Back when rappeling was traumatic and blistering...LOL

I bet Roper's version of the Riot Act was colorful indeed!
BlackGeorge

Social climber
Utah
Aug 22, 2009 - 07:16pm PT
The Mace, Sedona is 1959 now.
donini

Trad climber
Ouray, Colorado
Aug 23, 2009 - 10:36am PT
Great shot! Really good composition. You should get it framed Jeff.
rgold

Trad climber
Poughkeepsie, NY
Aug 23, 2009 - 12:32pm PT
A rainy Sunday here in the Gunks and Jello's wonderful thread started me down a sixties nostalgia trip:

Kevin Bein powering up Matinee, Shawangunks.


RG shivering up Junior, winter in the Gunks.


RG on more winter Gunking on Oblique Twique.


RG soloing High Exposure, Gunks, in the days before chalk bags.


RG huffing and puffing up Bloody Mary, Poko-Moonshine, NY.


RG leading at Devil's Lake, WI.


RG leading at[ Devil's Lake, WI. Is that as#@&%e gonna put in a pin yet or what?


Steve Derenzo leading Flyfoot Slab at Devil's Lake, WI.


Steve Derenzo pulling hard at Devils, Lake, WI with tied-off pin for pro.


Dave Slinger, local farmer, Wisconsin state legislator, and 5.10 soloist extraordinaire takes a break from milking the cows
(note especially the high-tech footwear) at Devil's Lake, WI.


RG on Guide's wall, Storm Point.


Ray Schrag doing Gill's one-handed ascent of Cutfinger Crack, Jenny Lake Boulders.


RG on summit of Mt. Moran (Skillet Glacier Route).


Peter Gardiner leading the Black Face on the Lower Exum Ridge.


Ray Schrag at Heigermeister's Boulders, Estes Park. John Gill providing all the spotting you used to get back in the day.


Pat Ament leading on a new route in the Royal Gorge, CO.


Bob Williams bouldering in Fontainbleau, France. Note the old-school crashpad.


Two ropes of two on the North Face of Bugaboo Spire (RG and Matt Hale out ahead, Pete Ramins leading, photo by Joe Kelsey)


Hip belay on the East Ridge of Bugaboo Spire.


RG on Hobbit Book, Tuoloume

Stannard Leading A5 (before downgrading) on the West Face of Sentinel, Yosemite.


Matt Hale at the top of Arrowhead Arete, Yosemite.


Matt Hale on Cerberus (Tricouni Nail) Needles, SD.



Largo

Sport climber
The Big Wide Open Face
Aug 23, 2009 - 01:25pm PT
Great sots, Rick. I could look at those and ones like them all day long.

I also did Sentinel West Face on pitons (but Kim Schmitz led that hideous A5 flake) and that was a scary business, leading OR following.

JL
Chiloe

Trad climber
Lee, NH
Aug 23, 2009 - 01:48pm PT
I don't think anyone here can equal RG for the range of first-hand 60s climbing shots.

Hghlights from all over the country while I was trying to figure out how to rappel with a clothesline.

Cheers!
John Moosie

climber
Beautiful California
Aug 23, 2009 - 03:12pm PT
oh man. This thread is getting better and better. Thanks Jello for starting it. I got a big smile imagining that menagerie of pets your family had. You certainly come from a courageous family. That makes me happy.


RG, love the old school crash pad. LOL
Dudeman

Trad climber
California/Idaho/Beyond
Aug 23, 2009 - 03:56pm PT
Thanks for sharing these totally awesome photos and stories!!! Just goes to show that although equipment and techniques may have improved over the years vision, boldness and skill have not necessarily increased.
Steve Grossman

Trad climber
Seattle, WA
Aug 23, 2009 - 05:55pm PT
Rgold- Thanks for raiding your slidebox! I hope that you will crosspost some of those fabulous shots elsewhere. Any more Fontainebleau bouldering shots?
Jello

Social climber
No Ut
Topic Author's Reply - Aug 24, 2009 - 01:35am PT
Great pics, Rich. As Chiloe said, it would be hard to equal that selection and breadth of coverage of 60's climbing.

------------------


It occurs to me that I've given a lot of space earlier in this thread to credit my Dad. But there was a Mom involved, too. Without Elgene Siefertson Lowe, the current tribe could never have walked the path. Mom was a dancer and thespian who was working at the Boeing Company in Seattle during WWII. As a war hero Dad came through on a speaking tour to promote the sale of war bonds. He and Mom met, and that was that. They married right after the war and moved to Michigan, where Dad attended law school, and the two started a family.

Here's Mom on honeymoon in Alta, Utah:

Upon graduation from law school, the young family moved to Ogden, Utah, in 1949, the year before I was born. Here's Mom with Mike, Melinda and Greg:

Mom never let her own fears for her kids interfere with their dreams. Always supportive, she sewed my first haul bag, packed my food for my first overnight solo (when I was 14!) and cheered from the sidelines over the next five decades of adventures. Dad died in 1984. Mom was 59, and although she never found another man she could marry, she took up dancing again, travelling around the country and winning dozens of awards in ballroom dancing:

In the early 2000's Mom developed debilitating arthritis. At about the same time, I developed symptoms of a neurological disease that has now been diagnosed as probably following under the general heading of multiple system atrophy.

We were two active people who had been stopped in our tracks. One of the great gifts of my life has been that I was thus free to move back to Utah and share the last years of Mom's earthly presence with her. Not the least of her gifts to me, was the lesson of the power of unconditional love, which frees and elevates both the giver and reciever.

Here's Mom - The Good Witch - who we also deemed The Queen Of Everything, on her 83nd birthday, October 31, 1995:

Mom passed over a few months later, in February of 2006. We buried her with Dad's ashes in an urn at her feet, a little joke they both would have enjoyed.

On July 4th of this year, I visited their grave with my ex-wife Teri, who was visiting and who loved Mom completely. Teri took this picture:

Then I took this picture of Teri:

And finally, this one of their gravestone:

Their grandkids called them Grandma Nonka and Grandpa Speed. I just call them the best parents ever, and thank each of them for their inspiring examples of how to live and die.

-JelloInFondRemembrance

WBraun

climber
Aug 24, 2009 - 01:48am PT
Thanks Jeff
rgold

Trad climber
Poughkeepsie, NY
Aug 24, 2009 - 02:55am PT

Jeff, you had wonderful parents.

I find that it may take years of perspective to see clearly the blessings our parents have bestowed on us. Sadly, many of us find that by the time the appropriate realizations have penetrated our thick skulls, the time for conveying gratitude is past, and we are left with loving things either left unsaid, or else spoken to cold gray headstones impervious to the warmth of newly acknowledged emotions.

I was lucky enough to be given the chance to repair with my mother the failings that muffled my relations with my dad, but my slide box, as Steve has called it, while full of records of my own adventures, has little in it of my parents and my life with them. And so, Jeff, and not to minimize in any way your travails, I judge you doubly lucky to have the family you have and to find, as the years go by, your slide box overflowing with reminders of the richness of your heritage.

Michael Kennedy

Social climber
Carbondale, Colorado
Aug 24, 2009 - 08:17am PT
Thanks, Jeff.

Beautiful words and memories. We can only hope to inspire the same for our own kids.
Delhi Dog

Trad climber
Good Question...
Aug 24, 2009 - 10:41am PT
Wow, this thread is great!
Thanks Steve for pulling it back.
Wonderful stuff you all are sharing...

Cheers,
DD
philo

Trad climber
boulder, co.
Aug 24, 2009 - 11:04am PT
Wow Jeff, I didn't think my respect for you and the Lowe brothers could be more than it was. But this tribute to your parents who's importance you have so well acknowledged has launched you into the stratosphere in my pantheon of heros.
Thank you immensely for sharing.
Peter Haan

Trad climber
San Francisco, CA
Aug 24, 2009 - 11:22am PT
Thanks for this real personal tale from your life, Jeff.I am sure it was fun to put together too!
hobo_dan

Social climber
Minnesota
Aug 24, 2009 - 01:02pm PT
This is great. Thanks for sharing
Jeff IMO You're the real deal

murf
Chiloe

Trad climber
Lee, NH
Aug 24, 2009 - 01:57pm PT
It occurs to me that I've given a lot of space earlier in this thread to credit my Dad.
But there was a Mom involved, too.


Excellent, and thanks for introducing her too.
philo

Trad climber
boulder, co.
Aug 24, 2009 - 02:06pm PT
Chiloe your tributes to your dad meant a lot to me and I thank you as well.
Jobee

Social climber
El Portal
Aug 24, 2009 - 02:08pm PT
Thank you Jeff.
A view into the good life.

Big smile right now!

Jo Whitford
Mighty Hiker

Social climber
Vancouver, B.C.
Aug 24, 2009 - 02:24pm PT
Very nice - thanks, Jeff, for an important reminder. I wonder how many of us were introduced to the outdoors, if not to hiking, the mountains, and climbing, by our parents? And encouraged in our choice of avocation? I was lucky in that my parents took us camping every summer (two weeks, four children, canvas wall tent, Coleman stove...), we got started hiking when young, and they (especially my father) did some mountaineering and climbing. Plus got us into scouts etc when we were of age for such. As always, we stand on the shoulders of giants.

My mother was an elementary school librarian until she retired in 1995, at inner-city schools with many new Canadians. One of her projects every spring was to take her classes hiking, up the Chief or sometimes the north shore mountains. Which she 'encouraged' her own children to help with. Many of the kids had never been hiking or in the mountains before. All great fun. Hiking up the Chief is like a virtual United Nations now.
guido

Trad climber
Santa Cruz/New Zealand/South Pacific
Aug 24, 2009 - 02:25pm PT
Beautiful and insightful-thanks Jello
Ed Bannister

Mountain climber
Riverside, CA
Aug 24, 2009 - 05:28pm PT
Jeff,
thanks so much for your willingness to share as you have here,
with much of what you love, including climbing.

Much love to you!
and to KimBrough as well.
Ed
mongrel

Trad climber
Truckee, CA
Aug 24, 2009 - 10:54pm PT
Fantastic thread, keeps getting better with the additions. Though we too started with a $13 piece of rope from a hardware store and hammers borrowed from our fathers' tool boxes (ball peen was the best, not so uncomfortable in the back pocket), I don't have good photos to add from that era. But I have to comment on the first of rgold's pics, of Kevin Bein on Matinee (back when the hold was still there near the lip - and he's no doubt mantling on it). He's in RRs!! which means he had to have gotten across the traverse in those clunkers! Wow.
Jello

Social climber
No Ut
Topic Author's Reply - Aug 25, 2009 - 02:20am PT
Ed, I'm sorry to have to tell you this, but Kim passed away back in 2001. I thought you probably knew this. It was not related to climbing. I miss our old Kool Breeze Bro every day.

-Jeff
Mimi

climber
Aug 25, 2009 - 09:31pm PT
Totally verklempt, SentimentalJello. That was overwhelming. Your Mom is as much a character as your Pop. What a cool childhood you had with such solid parents. Explains a lot!
Inner City

Trad climber
East Bay
Aug 25, 2009 - 10:12pm PT
thanks for sharing this touching truth about your life Jeff. Your parents are an inspiration to a father of 3 young ones! That is quite a family you have there. Impressive people! jeez. I better start raising the bar....
Nohea

Trad climber
Sunny Aiea,Hi
Aug 26, 2009 - 05:01am PT
What a thread and what fantastic development. Thank you Jeff for sharing. That first pic of your Dad watching the boys climb is precious. All the rest of the pics are super, its the first one that says so much.

Today there has been some great bumps. As I sat in the ER and a Drís office for a ridiculous amount of time I have read through many on my tiny BB screen. This is fantastic stuff and the reason I am part of this campfire. Thank You! What a great thread!

Aloha,
will
Steve Grossman

Trad climber
Seattle, WA
Nov 2, 2009 - 10:00pm PT
Vintage Bump!
maldaly

Trad climber
Boulder, CO
Nov 30, 2009 - 06:18pm PT
Jello,
It's been a real pleasure hanging out climbing and generally bullshitting with you and your family. I only met Ralph once but I did have many good moments with Elgene. You've got to tell the whole story about Bruno the Bear. When you told me that one (in the swimming pool) I almost fell out of my chair I was laughing so hard.

Good reminiscing my friend.
Mal
woof!

Trad climber
texas
Nov 30, 2009 - 08:49pm PT
Jeff, live in Fredericksburg TX and climb at erock and i was wondering if you could shed some light or any info on your FA Lowe overhang 5.11a when,who with, did you climb with Caylor, Jackson or Crump there? Do you even recall the climb I'm talking about?
Thanks
Woof!
couchmaster

climber
pdx
Dec 12, 2009 - 12:08am PT
Great stories and pictures up there, thanks so much for sharing them all!

Amazing folks Jeff.....
Jello

Social climber
No Ut
Topic Author's Reply - Dec 12, 2009 - 12:50am PT
Thanks for all the good comments. I'd love to hear others' recollections of their formative family years. Maybe here would be a good place to post 'em.

Malcolm, it's been wonderfull to share a quarter century swath of our lives. You've so impressed, motivated, inspired and in so many ways just plain entertained me with your antics and struggles and dreams and constant good humor and positive outlook. No treasure is equal to your friendship. Keep on living well, my friend, you're proof that it's the best revenge against life's vecissitudes. In the turbulent wake of losing Guy, I'll have to wait a bit before I can get up to posting the Bruno the bear story.

-Jello

Edit:

Woof, I think it was the spring of 1976 that I made my one visit to E-rock. I had been invited by Whole Earth in Austin to come down and do a slide show and weekend seminar out at E-rock. During the seminar I had an opportunity to demonstrate leading on established routes as well as one that hadn't been led yet (I think it's called Fear of Flying), and then finished up with that little roof. I think the store manager belayed me on those climbs, but I can't remember his name. I remember the corner being a perfect ever-widening crack, but the roof was just a scrappy thing, hardly worth mentioning.
dogtown

Trad climber
JackAssVille, Wyoming
Dec 12, 2009 - 01:08am PT
The year I was born.
Fritz

Trad climber
Hagerman, ID
Apr 3, 2010 - 08:53pm PT
Jello: I grew up in Ketchum/Sun Valley. Last winter a friend sent me a jpeg of a Sun Valley Mountain Express from Winter 1967.

There you are: up high in the Junior Expert's ski race results.


John Sabala was a classmate, and Pat Simpson was two years younger. John went to the Air Force Academy and I think Pat made it onto the U.S. Ski Team.

So----ski racing stories??
Steve Grossman

Trad climber
Seattle, WA
Jul 2, 2010 - 05:24pm PT
Jello Bump!
the kid

Trad climber
fayetteville, wv
Jul 2, 2010 - 06:05pm PT
super cool photo. that is pure climbing!
Scott Cole

Trad climber
Sunny California
Jul 4, 2010 - 09:48pm PT
I climbed in the Caucasus mtns a while back, they were still belaying and rapelling like that. I hadn't seen a Dulfersitz in a very long time, but the art is not lost to the Russians
couchmaster

climber
pdx
Jul 22, 2010 - 04:37pm PT
I wish I had any story like your's Jeff. My mom, now 88, just recently learned that my father was in Germany during the war. He'd mentioned a story of being in England, so she had though he was there the whole time LOL! The letters he'd sent home to his mom finally turned up and it turns out he marched right up the Rhine behind the retreating Wehrmacht. My dad died 54 years ago, and the letters wound up with his brother, who'd recently found them and got them over to my mom.

Nothing as interesting, funny and touching as this:
* - - - -
From Jeff Lowe:

Dad pursued everything at once, all the time. Back in the 'thirties, when he was 16 and his brother, George was a little older, they worked and lived on a ranch near St Anthony, Idaho. One day, they hitched up a buggy and drove over to the Tetons. The next day they climbed the Grand in cowboy boots, using a lariat as a rope.

During the war, Dad was commander of a Navy fighter squadron.
He met and flew with some guys who were good climbers, like Dick Pownall. Some of these guys worked for Exum in the summer, and after the war, Dad would spend some time every year, climbing in the Tetons. Any of his kids were allowed to go along on these trips, and climb if they wanted to. Dad took me up the Exum Ridge on the Grand when I was seven. He carried a 100' length of 1/4" nylon rope, to keep me safe. I was fully prepared to catch his fall, should he take one, on that little string!

Another time, in the mid-fifties, Dad decided to climb Rainier. At 5pm on a Friday afternoon, he locked the door to his law office in Ogden Utah and climbed into his newly acquired Hudson Hornet, and began the 1,000-mile drive, pre-interstate system. When he arrived at Paradise the next day, the mountain was enveloped in a storm cloud, but the party he planned to join, had started up anyway, so Dad took off after them, arriving at Camp Muir about the same time they did. After a few hours' sleep, the team got up and climbed to the top in really rough weather, but still made it down to Paradise by mid-afternoon. This allowed Dad just enough time to drive back home, and appear freshly showered and shaved to present a case before a county judge at 9am. His old flying buddies used to say that when Dad drove on those long trips, he was really just "flying low". The speedometer would register over 100mph for long stretches at a time, day or night.

My brothers and I did pretty quickly surpass Dad in our climbing abilities. Greg and I took him on a new variation to the Jensen Ridge on Symmetry Spire in 1965. The variation was about 5.9, and it was more than Dad wanted, although he got up it OK. From that time on, he mostly lived vicariously through his boy's adventures. His very last climb, was in 1979, when he went to Ama Dablam with us. He had heart disease and wasn't supposed to go above basecamp, but I wasn't too surprised to see him arrive at camp 2 at about 20,000' one afternoon. After I chastised him for jeopardizing the expedition by this stunt, we spent a special night, along with Greg, who was filming the trip.

Dad had a fatal heart-attack a few years later, while skiing with his daughter, Lil, at our local area, Snowbasin. After the ski patrolmen had loaded him into the tobaggan, Dad, knowing he was dying, begged them to take him over the old Porqupine gelande jump, which was just below where they were at the time. Of course, despite Dad's entreaties, they could'nt really grant his wish. He set a high bar for his kids, and helped us gain the skills and strength to make it over.


* - - - -

Great stuff, thanks again for sharing it.
Steve Grossman

Trad climber
Seattle, WA
Jan 5, 2012 - 07:52pm PT
Long overdue bump!
philo

Trad climber
Somewhere halfway over the rainbow
Mar 28, 2012 - 08:22am PT
Steve Grossman

Trad climber
Seattle, WA
Aug 11, 2012 - 04:48pm PT
That last Bump will certainly stop your car! LOL
Steve Grossman

Trad climber
Seattle, WA
Mar 24, 2013 - 02:06pm PT
Bump for a hump...humpty hump!
Steve Grossman

Trad climber
Seattle, WA
Dec 31, 2013 - 07:37pm PT
Bump for Jeff and the Family Stone...
Dweller Underground

Boulder climber
Irvine, Ca
Sep 16, 2014 - 12:06am PT
Dude, I just spend like an hour reading this entire thread. I think all this old school ropework is ten times sicker than all the super safe gym climbing lead certification bull, this is what inspires. It was the real mountaineers who overcame obstacles with their minds. Thank you for all the sick pictures!
Gnome Ofthe Diabase

climber
Out Of Bed
Sep 16, 2014 - 06:06am PT
all TACO-LISCHISH comments and all
Steve Grossman

Trad climber
Seattle, WA
Apr 28, 2017 - 07:10pm PT
Family style portions bump...
Messages 1 - 135 of total 135 in this topic
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