Gear Collection Worthy of Museum


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Trad climber
Topic Author's Original Post - May 23, 2005 - 06:51pm PT
Okay heavy on the internet connection but here yah go; I tried to leave out duplicates of stuff. We got a ton more crampons and a couple ropes

Pictures Incoming:

I have a collection of climbing gear that is certainly worthy of a museum....Neptune Mountaineering...Yosemite Museum...Whoever that guy is that collects mass gear.

It is from a friend that was personally big time climber in the 70s who died while cutting a tree.

I have about 200 different kinds of nuts and passive gear. Were talking some friggin weird nuts/hexes/and I don't know what to call them and I know my modern gear. Maybe 30-40 different types of belay/rappel devices, Tons of old carabiners (the kind from before they had locking biners that have the sliding bar lock or the ones with the threads that go all the way to the gate.
Some locking biners that are 12 inches long, some that are S curve shaped...

About 6 different types of early protype cam things.

Oh about 100 figure 8s that are of many different types.

Loads of old bongs/pitons etc, the old ropes (pre-nylon?), old harnesses/helmets.

I have some really weird funky stuff, I.E. aluminum hook shaped thingys that hinge together and say SCD on them....Tons of other odd unidentifiable old equipment.

Also about 15 pairs of old crampons. Some really old black diamond harnesses and helmets...

So you gear collector people, or those that know 'em. We are looking to donate/bid this stuff off in a large collection. Please get in touch with me within the next couple weeks. No hurry to move this stuff, but was hoping that we could in the next 6 months, and I'll be gone from July-September.

P.S. Not included currently with this. We have the original editions of pretty much every major climbing guidebook from the west (about a dozen Yosemite types) and about 8 tahoe ones off the top of my head. Tons of literature in its original edition stuff like Warren Harding and Royal Robbin's old books etc....Bunch of stuff on Chamonix....All these old how to rock climb books...

Trad climber
Josh, CA
May 23, 2005 - 08:27pm PT
Absoultey, 100 percent contact Ken Yaeger (sp?)! He's the man putting together the valley/climbing museum. He posts here from time to time. I'll dig up his email and let him know about this if he hasn't been contacted already.

Chicken Skinner

Trad climber
May 23, 2005 - 08:52pm PT

I would definately be interested in the stuff you mention and it would personally mean a lot to me as well because I used to hang out and climb and drink with the person you are referring to in the late 70's. My email is

Ken Yager

Trad climber
Gunks end of country
May 23, 2005 - 09:11pm PT
put me on the list.

Social climber
May 24, 2005 - 12:42am PT
Do a google on Ken Yager. I just talked to him this evening. He is still working on his climbing museum.

Trad climber
May 24, 2005 - 11:37am PT
I would be very interested in one of the original Yosemite Valley Guides. The first Roper guides that has a red cover and binding. Please let me know, Thanks!

Social climber
the little ditch
May 24, 2005 - 12:35pm PT
I'm sure we'd all love to see some pictures of the antiquated gear, if you have any. I personally would love to see those old cams and weird nuts, and the old diamond harnesses. That would be awesome! Man, it would be cool if chris had like a gear gallery or something on the site, a bunch of historical stuff that people could fill up with interesting pics of artifacts and climbing curios they've amassed.

Big Wall climber
Pagosa Springs CO
May 24, 2005 - 12:44pm PT
yes, maybe you can put some photos on the forum. We'd like to see the old gear...

Trad climber
Portland, Oregon
May 24, 2005 - 01:31pm PT
Along with Ken's diligent work on a Yosemite Museum the two principal private collectors are:

Stephane Pennequin (Corsica, France) /


Marty Karabin (US) /

I occasionally serve as a [very, very casual] intermediary for them and I'm sure either could also establish the quality of your collection. And as others have suggested, though, pictures would be invaluable to that effort.

Again, both are private collectors but each will undoubtably find a permanent home for their volumous collections (Stephane has been talking with the British, Not sure what Marty's long term plans are [maybe he should talk with Ken...]). I don't know Ken, though I know of his work on the very worthy Yosemite Climbing Museum. I suspect any of the three would insure the survival of unique and quality examples of our equipment heritage and I personally am more interested that such gear survive and am less concerned about where, or with whom, that happens - so long as it isn't in my basement.

P.S. I think Ken's effort is formally organized (for tax purposes) - Marty and Stephane are just normal guys (well, sort of normal given what they've managed to accomplish) working and raising families - none of them have what you'd call "deep pockets" so donations would certainly be welcome by all three.

Trad climber
Topic Author's Reply - May 24, 2005 - 03:17pm PT
Thanks guys, that gives me a couple leads. Ken, I'll e-mail you sometime. Maybe I can get some pics up too in a few days.
David Nelson

San Francisco
May 24, 2005 - 09:19pm PT

If you want to contribute to Yosemite's history, please don't sell, but donate to the Yosemite Climbing Museum, headed by Ken Yager (his sign is "Chicken Skinner" on this site). The material you donate will then stay in Yosemite permanently and some may qualify for public display. Ken has worked his heart out for this Museum, and has the support of the NPS in Yosemite. He posted above, with his email address. I know him personally and can vouch for him. Tom Frost, Royal Robbins, and Yvonne Choiunard also know him. Tom at least is on the Board, and I would be surprised if the others are not at least supporters and advisors. This is the place, no doubt, and Ken is the man. I have donated all of my old stuff, so there is my vote.

May 26, 2005 - 05:25am PT
Bonjour HalHammer,

Please, have a look at
Maybe, you will recognize in my Nuts Museum some of the nuts which you have in your impressive collection. I am eager to discover it.

With best wishes from Corsica.


Social climber
the little ditch
May 26, 2005 - 12:44pm PT
Damn! That was so awesome! I love climbing history, and that was one hell of a history.
Roger Breedlove

Trad climber
Cleveland Heights, Ohio
May 26, 2005 - 10:27pm PT
This is so depressing.:)

Flagstaff, AZ
May 27, 2005 - 01:10am PT
pictures! we demand pictures! before you part with any of that stuff.

Trad climber
Topic Author's Reply - Jun 5, 2005 - 05:23pm PT
Bump, pics added...

Big Wall climber
Pagosa Springs CO
Jun 5, 2005 - 08:07pm PT
Awesome collection. A lot of rare stuff in there. The gear collectors must be drooling!

Let me know if you need help identifying some of the gear--I recognize a lot of it, there's a lot of Euro stuff.

A collection like that really should be kept intact--it tells a whole story. Perhaps the AAC would finance a museum display somewhere.


Social climber
kennewick, wa
Jun 6, 2005 - 12:54am PT
Yes that is awesome. I saw a CLOG Nut looks like the new Metolius Hex, kind of curvy and a Saddlewedge nut. I used to have those on my rack 25 years ago....Sh*t, am I a relic?

Trad climber
Jun 6, 2005 - 05:43pm PT
I have a collection of 850+- ascenders, descenders and belay devices, and a web site (; which allows others to view these at their convenience. There are several items in your collection that I do not have in mine, and I would love to add them to my collection and to my site for all to see. At least they wouldn't just lie hidden in a box somewhere!

My main interest is in the ascenders/descenders/belay devices/anchor brakes, rather than the protection pieces (for which I recommend the same individuals recommended by others). I would be quite happy to give a detailed breakdown of which ones I have and do not have if you are interested. My email is


----> Gary
Don't let go

Trad climber
Yorba Linda, CA
Jun 6, 2005 - 05:52pm PT
Wow that's some crazy gear. Please post more pictures! And any gear you would like to give me to admire and save forever I would gladly accept. However it would be really cool to be able to see all of that stuff in a museum some day. I'd like to be able to show my grandkids all of that stuff when I'm old. Don't forget about the old school!
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