21 February 2012

Some wise words from some wise people

The Compressor route on Cerro Torre has gone free and the first ascensionists  chopped some of the 200 bolts that bludgeoned their way up some of the most controversial climbing in mountaineering history. In 1970 a bolt ladder made it possible and climbing divided on wether bolts were acceptable or not as a means of making a route. The debate goes on. What was bizarre is that people have criticised Hayden Kennedy and Jason Kruk for daring to chop the bolts after their ascent

It's been great then to see some pretty big names in mountaineering defending their right to remove the ironwork and applauding their achievement. Seems like there are some new hard men out there.

I also came across this article by the great Yvon Chouinard the man behind Patagonia and some big days out in Yosemite who has also spoken in support of Kennedy and Kruk. He has also been a long term advocate of the view that how you climb is as important as what you climb. The article is about making first ascents in his late sixties and how you can stay radical to the end if you don't let your mind grow old. Climbing has become a lot harder recently at least in terms of grades climbed. I wonder if the focus on the physical has been at the expense of the beauty of the experience sometimes.
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