olympic climb­ing

Climbing - - THE APPROACH -

Re. Cedar Wright’s col­umn “Gold Medal” ( ti

nyurl.com/klny644), top young climbers in the United States to­day are far re­moved from all the ro­man­ti­cized dirt­bag­gery that was cham­pi­oned dur­ing my for­ma­tive years as a climber. Grow­ing up to be­come adults lead­ing bal­anced, pro­duc­tive lives now seems to be the tra­jec­tory for most top climbers, and if that means chuck­ing all the di­rec­tion­less HoBo­hemi­an­ism of pre­ced­ing climb­ing gen­er­a­tions, all the bet­ter. The sooner peo­ple stop fall­ing for this Jack Ker­ouac/Neal Cas­sady BS, the hap­pier they will be in the long run. Climb­ing is now a main­stream sport ap­peal­ing to the well-ad­justed. —Marco Pervo, via Climb­ing.com

I wanted to say thanks for the Wright Stuff col­umn on the Olympics, and to point out how climbers to­day have no grasp or un­der­stand­ing of ad­ven­ture/ex­ploratory climb­ing. As a new climber who got into the sport to be able to climb in the Val­ley and the Buga­boos, and to hope­fully pur­sue moun­taineer­ing as well, I’m con­stantly frus­trated by the lack of peo­ple want­ing to get out­side and learn trad or just scram­ble for that mat­ter. It’s hard to learn th­ese skills with­out pay­ing a guide, and the whole con­cept of “find­ing a men­tor” is dif­fi­cult when you live in a ma­jor city where peo­ple only climb in the gym. I’m strug­gling to get bet­ter in the gym so that as

I gain th­ese skills, I’ll be able to get out­side and put them to use. (FYI: Teach­ing your­self fin­ger­locks and hand stacks in the gym sucks.) Thanks for bring­ing some aware­ness to the is­sue—it was a great read! —Vinny Mullin, via Face­book

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