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Messages 841 - 860 of total 869 in this topic << First  |  < Previous  |  Show All  |  Next >  |  Last >>
Wayno

Big Wall climber
Seattle, WA
Nov 19, 2012 - 12:42am PT
I know who but it would be cheating, right Anders?
Mighty Hiker

climber
Vancouver, B.C.
Nov 19, 2012 - 01:15am PT
The first recorded climb at Squamish was South Gully, which it appears was done in spring 1958, not 1957. We met Hank Mather today.

There is a reliable report of climbing at Squamish by a named person (a 'real' climber) in 1955 or 1956. I've talked with him, and have some idea as to what he might have done.

There are at least three stories of "climbing" at Squamish in the late 1940s to mid 1950s, possibly none of which can now be verified. Two, including that of the Rae brothers, seem more of a "local boys gone scrambling on those cliffs" nature than true climbing. The third story involves the discovery of fixed pitons of unsure origin in the late 1950s or early 1960s. If anyone did any true climbing at Squamish pre-1956, though, it created little if any legacy.

There is the fascinating question as to when climbers - and there were some climbers in Vancouver in the 1930s with ropes and pitons - started to think of Squamish as a possible area for rockclimbing per se. They were doing some things with ropes even on Grouse, and had had contact with the Sierra Club climbers. And certainly passed through Squamish.
Tami

Social climber
Canada
Nov 19, 2012 - 01:40am PT
Dammit Bruce, what do you recall of your own father's stories? Never mind the damn buttons........cough up what yer folks shared with you of Squamish pre-history.

:-)
Mighty Hiker

climber
Vancouver, B.C.
Nov 19, 2012 - 01:48am PT
There may have been any number of young men in Squamish in the 1950s who, inspired by "The Ascent of Everest", local traditions and setting, a bit more money and time, and the usual adolescent male motives, tried 'climbing'. With their mother's clotheslines, or a rope borrowed from work, caulk boots, and so on. Just the way so many climbers started out, including many of us. (Ask me sometime about a "rappel" with 1/4" yellow polypropylene, at Levette Lake.) Plus they had a somewhat outdoor-oriented culture, where people not only cut trees, hunted, and fished, but also had things like Garibaldi Park and its history, and the Brandvold's Diamond Head Lodge. It would surprising if a few people hadn't experimented in climbing, but whatever they did seems not to have led to any consequences.

For example, Sir Edmund Hillary gave a talk on the climb in Vancouver in March 1954, and some students from the high school did a trip by boat to see it. What might that have inspired?
Big Mike

Trad climber
BC
Nov 19, 2012 - 01:51am PT
I am loving the revival! Nice work Anders! Tami has an excellent question Bruce! I would love to hear the answer!
Wayno

Big Wall climber
Seattle, WA
Nov 19, 2012 - 01:56am PT
Anders sent me an email asking about Don Gordon after meeting Hank Mather. After I told Don about my recent trip to Squamish he said he did some of the first "real climbs" at Squamish back in the fifties. I'm not sure exactly what he meant by that but I bet Anders could sleuth out the details if I can hook him up with "Claunch". It would make some interesting history.

And instead of saying yur gunna die I will just say Yer Light.
Mighty Hiker

climber
Vancouver, B.C.
Nov 19, 2012 - 01:57am PT
If the Rae brothers did Astrologger, I'll agree to their building a gondola there.

Let's not forget that people from what is now the Squamish Nation were all over the Chief for food gathering, ceremonial, recreational and other purposes long before any of us showed up. They had a substantial, settled population. It may not now be possible to do more than observe that they did some respectable climbing, not just on the Chief but in the mountains.

Bruce's tale of climbing with his brothers doesn't seem much different from whatever it is that the later white settlers of Squamish did in the early 1950s. The only real difference being that there is primary evidence and it is remembered.

And I put 'real' climber in quotes for the good reason that there are different ways of defining what you mean by climbing, mostly subjective. Not for me to decide.
Tami

Social climber
Canada
Nov 19, 2012 - 02:04am PT
My parents both skied in the Garibaldi area in the forties - am pretty sure BK's mum Jean was along for at least one of those - there are pictures of her in my mother's old photo album. But Bruce knows that :-)

I don't think my parents generation considered climbing on the Chief. It was low elevation and they were more concerned with getting into the alpine - either for mountaineering or skiing.

Ditto for guys like Tom Fyles.

But Fred Beckey might be an interesting resource for answers.............


RyanD

climber
Squamish
Nov 19, 2012 - 02:29am PT
This is cool. The south gulley is the earliest classic eh? Have to put that one on the list. Anyone done it?
thekidcormier

Gym climber
squamish, b.c.
Nov 19, 2012 - 09:38am PT
I climbed half of the south gulley once, then retreated. There's a brand new fixed line in there to help get haul bags up the crux.

EDIT; I meant the south south gully, oops
MH2

climber
Nov 19, 2012 - 11:30am PT
Good to see this thread, again.


Somewhat off the Squamish track, but speaking of physical evidence, and maybe it leads back to Squamish, has anyone seen one of these markers, or know who P. Brown is?



Mighty Hiker

climber
Vancouver, B.C.
Nov 19, 2012 - 12:41pm PT
That sort of looks like a survey tag, although it'd be unusual to attach one to a tree/stump. As it's near the Camel, perhaps something to do with the old watershed boundaries?

As for logs being sent down along Olesen Creek, it seems possible. There was logging in upper Olesen Creek, before World War II if not earlier, and if you hike to the third (fourth) summit and Slhanay, you see evidence of it - big stumps, old cables and so on. (The logging in 1991-92, on the upper southeast side of the valley, was done with helicopters.) FWIW, there doesn't seem to be any physical evidence in Olesen Creek of old flumes, or of logs being skidded down. Even after 60 or 80 years there'd be something - loggers very rarely cleaned up after themselves. Maybe the Ministry of Forests office has some information?

The origins of the trail up Olesen Creek are an interesting question, although there was recorded hiking on the Chief from at least the 1930s, probably much earlier.

Considering the amount of rockfall and debris flow in the gullys at Squamish, I doubt I'd ever trust a "fixed" rope in one of them.
MH2

climber
Nov 19, 2012 - 01:26pm PT
Interesting thought. If it was a surveyor, perhaps surveyors made early climbs on the Chief. Another look at where the tag is:

Mighty Hiker

climber
Vancouver, B.C.
Nov 19, 2012 - 02:01pm PT
Good point, Andy - IIRC, there is a Geodetic Survey benchmark near the top of the Malemute, and another at the Chief's second summit. Must check on their dates, but a long time ago probably. Tricouni may be able to help with this.
Tricouni

Mountain climber
Vancouver
Nov 19, 2012 - 02:02pm PT
The geodetic people got around, but that is not one of their markers, at least not anything like any I've seen before.
Tami

Social climber
Canada
Nov 19, 2012 - 04:10pm PT
Crown Mtn was a popular objective for hiker-climber types in the 20's-30's-40's. It's really visible from Vancouver and access from the Grouse Mtn cabin community was fairly easy. The Camel was very popular as well.........

P. Brown ? Anybody by name of Brown climbing with ol' Tom Fyles ????

I wrote to my mum asking what she might remember.
Mighty Hiker

climber
Vancouver, B.C.
Nov 19, 2012 - 08:10pm PT
Another sort of marker, placed by the Mountain Access Committee/Mountain Rescue Group in the mid 1960s.
photo not found
Missing photo ID#274619
The tree has done a fine job of growing around the sign, "Baldwin-Cooper" meaning that it is for the path to the base of the Grand Wall.

Going back to Andy's tag/marker, it's interesting that it has "P. Brown" stamped on it three times. Also that it's screwed in, not nailed. What metal is it made out of? Size? Perhaps there's someone named "P. Brown" who liked to "tag" things he went to? Although it looks old and weathered, as apparently corroborated by it being in a dead-looking burl.
MH2

climber
Nov 19, 2012 - 08:40pm PT
Now that you mention...

When I go back and look, "P. Brown" is also stamped 3 times along the edge of the dog tag. I suspect that P. Brown was an eccentric who may have done this for reasons known only to them.
Tami

Social climber
Canada
Nov 19, 2012 - 10:18pm PT
"P Brown" is stamped FOUR times into the top of it. Look in the middle of the thing, it has a P Brown shadow in there. But what are the messy chunk-marks on it in addition to the multiple P Brown marks ?

Looks like a soft metal like it has lead in it & non-galvy flathead screws.

A great mystery !
Mighty Hiker

climber
Vancouver, B.C.
Nov 20, 2012 - 12:44am PT
Still trying to figure out the hand-engraved letters on the tag. I blew Andy's photo up a bunch, and looked at it from different angles, but couldn't figure out what the four symbols are.

Not to mention the location, the need to stamp his name seven (7!) times on it, etc etc.
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