I want to be your slave for five days and five nights...


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Social climber
No Ut
Topic Author's Original Post - Feb 26, 2007 - 08:31pm PT

…but it’s going to cost you!

One of the most gratifying hats I wear is my Executive Director of Ogden Climbing Parks (OCP) hat. Managing this small non-profit organization allows me to give something back to climbers, as well as to the community where I was born and grew up. For a couple of years we’ve been pretty low-key—just putting things in order with property owners, the city of Ogden, Weber county, the local trails organizations, the Forest Service and so on. We have also purchased the refrigerated ice tower I designed for the ESPN Winter X Games.

We have plans that will benefit every type of climber:
-Adding parking and trails to the St. Joe’s bouldering area on the east bench, and improving the landings while at the same time mitigating erosion problems.
-Building a trail up to and along the base of the Schoolroom Cliff, home of some of the first 5.11 (trad) routes in the country, now home to many fine sport routes, as well.
-Negotiating access and building trails to several almost untouched limestone crags, with potential for a couple hundred routes from 1 to 3 pitches. Ogden’s mayor has offered to pay for anchor and supplies need to establish the routes.
-Expanding the farmed ice in Waterfall Canyon to include a thousand-foot swath of low angle to moderately steep cliffs and gullys southwest of Malan’s Waterfall, and east of the three existing via feratta.
-Finalizing the agreement with the landowner of Waterfall Canyon, allowing traditional and sport climbing to take place at no charge, under the management of OCP. This opens up about 100 low-end trad climbs up to 4 or 5 pitches in length, and a couple dozen decent sport routes.
-Starting operations of the Jeff Lowe School of Mountaineering, offering instruction and guiding by AMGA certified guides, particularly targeting youth and underserved members of the community.
-Erecting the (redesigned) Hollowgraphic Ice Tower in the Big Dee Sports Park at the mouth of Ogden Canyon.
-Hosting a Ogden Hard-Core Climbing Film Festival, featuring films that are squeezed out at the larger Mountain-Film festivals.

To accomplish all these things, we will need money. We have applied for and expect to receive grants from one or more private and public foundations (see sample cover letter, below) but we will need the participation of local individuals and businesses, too, along with the climbing community in general. And that’s where you come in.

In a month OCP will launch a major fund-raising campaign. There will be a way for everyone to be involved, at whatever level you choose. But for my SuperTopo friends, specifically the fat cats among you, I’m making an exclusive one-time offer: the chance to literally have me cook breakfast and dinner and clean house for you for five days, while you get to go climbing on the Tower or any of the other venues each day, guided or partnered (as the case may be) by one of our guides!

Here are the specifics:

-Five days and nights room and board at Jeff Lowe’s house, at a mutually agreeable time, any time after December 1, 2007. Jeff will do the cooking and cleaning.
-Five days guiding/instruction/partnering, by an AMGA certified guide who knows the area.
-Lifetime “Founding Member” membership to Ogden Climbing Parks with discount card.
-No-fee access (reservations required on F-C-F-S basis) to climbing on the Ice Tower, for as long as the Tower remains in operation.
-Signed copies of Ice World and Jeff’s new book, Many Climbs (upon publication.
-Waterfall Ice, Alpine Ice and Clean Walls, DVD’s




C-mon, folks, I’ll be your SLAVE! And you’ll be doing the climbing community a good deed. Let the bidding begin!

Your loyal friend and would-be slave,
Jeff Lowe



January 28, 2007

RAMP Tax Commission Board

Dear RAMP Board Members:

Children love to climb, it’s a natural instinct. When they climb, they develop their muscles, their balance, their flexibility and their brains. It takes a creative mind for a toddler to place a footstool on a stack of newspapers, pull herself up high enough to flop over onto the counter, then reach high on tippy-toe to grab the cookie jar off the top of the fridge! As they grow older, many people never lose the urge to climb and explore. Technical mountain climbing is just a more sophisticated and codified expression of that ancient urge.

I’m an Ogden native and have been a mountain climber ever since my dad guided me up the Grand Teton at the age of seven, back in 1958. Over the years I’ve worked as an instructor for Outward Bound, guided climbers around the world and run my own climbing school, among other things. I’ve witnessed the metamorphosis of a forty-year old housewife into an avid tiger of the heights. I’ve seen inner city dope fiends kick drugs in favor of climbing rocks, and I’ve seen the joy on the faces of kids of all stripes when they finally make it to the top of a climbing wall. The climbing experience offers something that’s very hard to get in today’s society, infatuated as it is with video games and reality TV; almost divorced from or afraid of the natural world and real challenge.

I was very glad to hear from Ogden’s mayor, Mathew Godfrey, that you are graciously willing to consider our request for a grant of $200,000 to help construct an ice climbing facility in the Big Dee Sports Park, In Ogden. Ogden’s Hollowgraphic Ice Tower is unique in that it is the world’s only free-standing, refrigerated ice climbing structure.

I originally designed the tower to be used by the TV sports giant ESPN, as the ice climbing venue for the Winter X Games. It was used for the X Games for several years until ice climbing was dropped from the roster of sports. Last fall I negotiated with Alpine Iron Works, the owner of the tower, to purchase it at a greatly reduced price. Although the tower originally cost $245,000 just for fabrication, the owner is making an in-kind donation of $215,000 of that value (this is exclusive of the cost of erecting the tower).

We have transported the tower in pieces from Crested Butte, Colorado, where it was last used, to Ogden. We have secured a lease on the site at Big Dee Park, from the City, and we are currently working on a slight re-design to make it a better teaching and learning facility, while maintaining the ability to host high-end competitions. This facility will be used by local and visiting climbers. Courses and special programs will be run for kids and adults with special needs. Competitions and festivals will be hosted with far-reaching publicity for Ogden. The community in general will benefit from having a “Tower of Dreams”, unlike any other venue, a place where they can personally experience the truth of this line from French writer, Rene Daumal: “What is above, knows what is down below. But what is below, does not know what is above.”

Thank you for your kind consideration.

Sincerely Yours,

Jeff Lowe
Executive Director
Ogden’s Hollowgraphic Ice Tower, Inc.
dba Ogden Climbing Parks
PO Box 693
Ogden, UT 84402

Tel: (801) 399-1130

Toker Villain

Big Wall climber
Toquerville, Utah
Feb 26, 2007 - 08:35pm PT
A word of warning to the winner of the auction;

DON'T ask for the puppet show.

Feb 26, 2007 - 08:53pm PT
Jello said: C-mon, folks, I’ll be your SLAVE!

Oh oh, make sure you know who'll be coming to your house.

Social climber
No Ut
Topic Author's Reply - Feb 26, 2007 - 09:38pm PT
Here's a picture of the Hollowgraphic Ice Tower. We will keep it iced for five months each winter. It will have six different facets, four ice of varying angles, including a free-standing pillar, and two overhangining mixed facets. It will allow 10 to 12 roped parties to climb at any one time. Each spring we will re-fit the Tower with a surface of soft wood slabs, for summer simulated-ice, and mixed climbing practice.

Social climber
No Ut
Topic Author's Reply - Feb 26, 2007 - 10:08pm PT
OK, just had a phone conversation with someone who wants to remain annonymous, who promissed to pay $2,000 if we don't get our minimum bid of $3,000. I refused the offer, and tried to explain the value of the package this way:

-five days with a private AMGA certified guide $1,500
-Life time OCP discount card on lodging, food, etc
($40/year for est 20 years) $ 800
-Life time Tower access ($300/yr times 10 years) $3,000
-Signed books and videos 150
-five days lodging and meals cooked by me PRICELESS!

The caller said they might get back to me.
Mighty Hiker

Social climber
Vancouver, B.C.
Feb 26, 2007 - 10:12pm PT
And that's not including the puppet show!
Toker Villain

Big Wall climber
Toquerville, Utah
Feb 26, 2007 - 10:16pm PT
With three (count 'em) THREE puppets!

Social climber
No Ut
Topic Author's Reply - Feb 26, 2007 - 10:39pm PT
Here's a picture of one half of Waterfall Canyon Climbing Park.

Trad climber
New York, NY
Feb 26, 2007 - 11:21pm PT
It sounds like a pretty good thing you're working on there, jello. I'm no fatcat - it's way out of my league. But I'll be interested to hear the updates on your fundraiser.


Social climber
No Ut
Topic Author's Reply - Feb 27, 2007 - 12:41am PT
Thanks, Happie. Wuddya think, Fatrad's always reminding us how much money he makes for himself and his clients. Don't ya think he oughta share the wealth a bit, and do some good for the climbing community? Maybe he's got a client who's interested in climbing?
Mighty Hiker

Social climber
Vancouver, B.C.
Feb 27, 2007 - 12:43am PT
You're not suggesting that DaftRat put his money where his mouth is, are you?

Social climber
No Ut
Topic Author's Reply - Feb 27, 2007 - 01:01am PT
That's exactly what I'm suggesting, Mighty. It would be win-win. OCP would recieve his support, and Fatty would have plenty of time to attempt to convert me to his world-view.
Karl Baba

Trad climber
Yosemite, Ca
Feb 27, 2007 - 01:06am PT
Let's hope you cook as well as you Climb!

Might be safer for the stomachs and make more money if you climb with them and let them bivy somewhere and get pro cooking!

Otherwise I can just see it.

"Hey Jeff Man, what's for dinner! Climbing was rad and I'm famished!"

"You're going to love it Bro, we had this same meal in Patagonia over and over and it's great. First we boil these Ramen noodles and then throw in these special dehydrated Whatzits. The real secret is in the special powder that spices it. I'd tell ya but I'd have to kill you"

"Umm, maybe I'll have to kill you instead!"

I'd bid but I'm not really attracted to ice climbing and money isn't really attracted to me!

Peace and best wishes


Feb 27, 2007 - 01:29am PT
Wow Jello! I'm sure you'll get the investors you need to see this cool project fully operational. The lucky bidder will definitely get their money's worth.

Can't wait to visit and check it out.

Social climber
No Ut
Topic Author's Reply - Feb 27, 2007 - 01:47am PT
If Fatty wins the bid, Locker, I'll have to draw the line on that fishnet thing...

On the other hand, if Mimi would like me in fishnets when she comes to visit..I have been getting in touch with my sensitive female par...er... side recently. It's just that I can only fully express it when I'm with a fellow(?) chick, ya know?

Social climber
No Ut
Topic Author's Reply - Feb 27, 2007 - 01:56am PT
Hey Locker, we can definitely put some re-soles to good use, though. Thanks for the offer. I'll follow up with you.

Trad climber
Feb 27, 2007 - 02:35am PT
I am two bottles of good wine into this evening so I cannot commit right now. However I see no problem with 3G and I'll join you Jan, feb, or Mar 2008 whenever you tell me its the best. I thought I was moving to the west coast next month but was held up by an great island offer. So I need a good mountain experience.


Feb 27, 2007 - 02:37am PT
Dude, you rock.

Social climber
No Ut
Topic Author's Reply - Feb 27, 2007 - 10:18am PT
Way to go, Wil. We'd have a great time for a good cause. Can I send you a few more bottles of vino? Let us know when you can commit.

Thanks for the good spirits!


Trad climber
Grand Junction, CO
Feb 27, 2007 - 11:14am PT
I’m just a poor college kid from Grand Junction, but I do have some advice. I reckon you have a couple REI's near you. SLC, SANDY. I happen to work for the one here. REI gives money to the community every year, sometimes its gear, sometimes its good money. I think that what you are doing falls under something REI would be willing to back. IF I were you I would take your Grant proposition to the REI's around you and shmooze some Employees. The employees are the ones that nominate grants.
Hope this Helps,

Edit) Could probably even go to REI from a national level and apply for grants too. Even though REI has become extremely big, they are still somewhat of a Co-op and have money set aside for the community that they have to spend.
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