Bravery and Betrayal at the Santiam River

Every year, usually late in the summer, somebody’s underpants get hoisted up the flagpole at Longbow Forest Camp, and the freeballing owner is sacrificed over the bonfire in front of a cruel audience of hissing creeps who used to call him family. It is the most wonderful time of the year!

Longbow has been a family tradition for almost 30 years. Not technically my family, but my best friend’s family, which is close enough. A monstrous rotting stump of a tree sits near the kitchen, and all of the kids, who are now 30, used to drive their little toy cars all over its terrain. I’ve been coming to Longbow for close to 10 years*, just barely missing toy-car-stump era by about 15 years. Usually we enjoy activities such as moving huge logs, teasing Karl for bringing a gun, badminton, crawdad capturing, cold river swimming, and making the fire so big and hot that it melts our beer bottles, but this year was slightly more death-defying. read more

Calm as the Dead

“Who shall call them from the grey twilight, the forgotten people? The heir of him to whom the oath they swore. From the North shall he come, need shall drive him: he shall pass the Door to the Paths of the Dead.”   

-Malbeth the Seer

In this passage, Tolkien was actually referring to the boulderer’s destiny of climbing at Priest Draw. You shall walk the paths of the dead, and the forgotten people will fulfill their oath: to let you cam your flesh into their bomber limestone pockets. read more

Portland Boulder Rally 2014

This year I showed up to the Portland Boulder Rally (one of the better acronym’d events around) bright-eyed but broken-butted. Even though I couldn’t compete, this event has plenty of other draws.

Raffles: Our crew usually kills it at the raffle, and this is because we are good at raffles. How can you be good at raffles? By winning a bunch of them, doi, let’s stop asking me stupid questions.

Beer: Beer is fun to buy, but it is even more fun to sneak in in the stainless steel water bottles that come in our competitor goody bags. Also to spill on children to remind them that this world does not belong to them yet. read more

Glossary of Climbing Expressions

Here is a list of slang words/climbing terms that I might use in this blog. To the dismay of some, I did not include anything about alpinism or ice climbing because I will never do those things. I included aid climbing even though I’ll probably never do that because I wanted to clear up the difference between free-climbing and free-soloing. In any case, let me know if you think there is a definition I should include that you do not see below, or if there is something you are curious about, or if you hate me and climbing and everything and I wrote it all wrong and am ruining your life. read more

Lair of the Leviathan


Sacred places.

There are legends, dark, yet compelling, that tell of a breed of curious, sinewy land-leviathans who once roamed these salty plains. With tails made of wire, eyes of broken glass, and hearts protected by tin sheaths, they were mysterious party animals. In fact, there was a cave they used to frequent and ceremoniously trash with bad graffiti, excrement, and beer bottles.

It was inside of this very cave where I found the boulder problem that became my summer project. Rumor has it this problem does have a name (Caveman v7), but my faith in humanity is preventing me from accepting that people are still naming cave problems Caveman, so I have dubbed it Lair of the Leviathan in humble tribute to the creatures whose sanctuary it was for so long. read more

Burning Hammer Time

Photo by Swiss Williamson,

Despite the fact that real life is actually a video game, there are no cheat codes in rock climbing. OH, except one: Dynoing from the bottom to the top! Inside of any climb, you may use whatever beta suits you, and this is true at competitions, outdoors, everywhere. If you are short, you may have to use intermediate holds (like I am doing above) which adds extra moves, or resort to doing the standard moves which could be immeasurably harder for you. This is the situation I frequently find myself in, and it is not only not-cheating, but maybe more along the lines of playing Cruis’n World on the infamous “drunk as Hell in the arcade” difficulty setting. read more

Ay Yo, Fuck Reality!

This is the difference.

This is the difference.

Over the winter I got really good at cramming dildos onto overly full shelves, determining which Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle action figures had battle shells, and falling off of the last move of Seven Spanish Angels. It’s strange to think that after I stopped working in the Amazon warehouse that my tasks became MORE repetitive. Obviously I am exaggerating… of course I crammed more than 75 dildos onto a shelf, I’m a professional.

What happens to your mind after you have fallen off of the same thing 75 times though? What is the timeline of this failure? Is it longer than I will live?! Is it longer than I will be in Bishop for, anyway? read more

Enjoying Moe’s Valley

Stay tuned for a longer video we are making featuring all the easier climbs we enjoyed in Moe’s, and read more about how easy it is to enjoy Moe’s Valley.

Forever Butthurt

“Why didn’t you just walk up the other side?” -Most reasonable people

What is she even doing up there?

What is she even doing up there?

Well, I sure don’t know! It is hard to explain, or even justify bouldering as a sport, much less something to dedicate your life to. Somewhere, in every climber brain, there is a rationalization for the obsession, and it’s just hanging out at a party, talking about postmodernism, and not caring if you care. This rationalization lives in the corner of the mind where good things happen to good people, polar bears are soft, and the internet wants you to win free laptops. It doesn’t need you, but it knows you need it. read more