Date of Birth:
June 4, 1986
What is your primary means of adventure, AKA what gets you most psyched?
Difficult (for me) free climbing. Doing it close to the ground is fine, but typically I find it more rewarding the further off the deck I get.
Invent your dream adventure by combining five places, disciplines, pitches, peaks, environments, etc. and stacking them together into a combination. Why did you pick each part?
I’m assuming this is a multi-day pursuit as the most meaningful adventures usually take at least a day to complete. My adventure would begin with 1000m of shredding on skis through cold, stable snow into the base of El Cap. (the first half would be a couloir to an open bowl and the second half would be PNW old growth) After climbing Freerider with two bivies in perfect temps, we’d camp one more time on top. The next day, we’d scramble terrain similar to the easy climbing on Mount Stuart’s North Ridge for another 1000m. This would take us to the base of the Weeping Wall stacked on top of Cleopatra’s Needle. In between the ridge and the ice, there’d be a Italian hut and we’d wind down with pasta and red wine. After finishing the ice, the day would end (as any good day should) with another 1000m of cold smoke.
Describe 5 climbs, trips, or moments that have defined you as a mountain athlete:
- Establishing the Compleat Angler at Trout Creek. Putting up one of the hardest established routes at the crag where I cut my teeth and worked up through the grades was enormously satisfying.
- All Along the Watchtower in the Bugaboos. This was my first grade VI and my first route in the Bugs. I’d obsessed about it for a year prior and leading up to actually climbing the thing, it scared me to death. We did the route in good style, but got pushed around enough to gain a healthy respect for terrain on that scale.
- A few years ago it was all the rage to hike the Enchantment Loop outside of Leavenworth, WA and climb as many features as you could in a single day. Blake Herrington and I had only ever cragged together, but the forecast was splitter and I had a narrow window between work trips. We went big and ticked the West Face of CBR (5.11+), Acid Baby on the Aasgard Sentinel (5.10+), Solid Gold on Prusik Peak (5.10+), and Hyperspace on Snow Creek Wall. In the end, this was just a warm-up for Blake. Shortly thereafter he and Jens Holsten sent the ultimate Enchantment Loop link-up of Let It Burn, Dragons of Eden, and Der Sportsman. (each 5.12-)
- Sending The Mayfly (.12d) at Trout Creek. I’d been climbing at Trout for a year or two when Cody Scarpella first established this route. Watching Cody tear through that crag was incredibly inspiring and for years after I saw the Mayfly as a next level route that I’d probably never touch. Sending it forced me to redefine how I saw myself as a climber.
- Freeing the L&H (1000’ 5.12) up at Washington Pass. This was my first time freeing an old aid climb and getting to participate in the process from start to finish was super satisfying.
Describe your most memorable night in the mountains:
Climbing Hyperspace on Snow Creek Wall outside of Leavenworth, WA in the dark (starting basically at sunset-see #3) sprinting down the trail back to the car, and then driving through the remainder of the night to make it to work at Smith Rock State Park in Oregon by 8AM the next morning. I showed up with 30 minutes to spare.
What has scared or intimidated you as a mountain athlete?
Learning to balance and temper my stubbornness and desire to just ‘try it and see what happens.’ This has burned me once or twice and almost burned more times than I care to admit.
What would your adventure partners be most surprised to learn about you from before the time when they met you?
I was extremely unathletic growing up. Despite participating in a lot of little league-type sports, I was absurdly uncoordinated and was the kid on the basketball team no one wanted to pass the ball to. (for good reason)
What are your top 5 all-time favorite pieces of CAMP equipment?
- Photon Carabiner-Super light and low profile. Perfect for racking lots of cams and draws on my harness.
- X-Lights-These are the ultimate alpine guide’s tool. In the PNW your axe needs to be a sturdy workhorse that is equally at home sending on steep(ish) as well as being incorporated into part of a snow anchor.
- Ovo Belay Device-No more elbow tendonitis from belaying!
- Ball Nuts-These things work when literally nothing else will. Microprotection with a real strength rating (8kn!) makes these a must have for thin trad climbing.
- Matador VCR-These shoes send on the hardest routes at Trout like no other shoe I’ve found. Stiff enough to stand on the small, but soft enough to friction up the blank dihedrals that place is full of.
Why are you a CAMP athlete?
Their ability to consistently produce the perfect blend of durability, functionality, and lightweight designs.
It meant a lot to me when I climbed:
- Peepshow, Smith Rock, OR (onsight)
- Liberty and Injustice for All (onsight)
- Weeping Wall. These were my first WI6 leads and I’m really not much of an ice climber.
- The RNWF of Half Dome with an old friend who I don’t get to climb with as much as I’d like.
- Rainbow Wall. This was my first multipitch redpoint.
The adventure, route or race I had to train the hardest for was:
The Compleat Angler, Trout Creek, OR.
The adventure, route or race that wrecked me the most was:
Climbing Golden Gate on El Cap. My partner had a shoulder injury and I ended up leading and hauling all of the hard climbing. This was after ripping a bolt on one of the crux pitches and taking a 50 footer onto an old piton.
I most want an all-expenses-paid trip to:
The Trango Towers – with bodyguards and camp/travel sanitation crews also provided.
My short list of climbing or adventure goals this year:
- Free El Cap
- Continue to open new terrain at Trout Creek
- Maintain highly functioning shoulders