Friday, November 5, 2010

Maui Kite Beach Crew threw a kite jumping party last week!

Here's a photo that I took of Karen Lang jumping

Click on the image to see the article that was posted in Surfer Today Magazine.

And here's a link to the Skymasters website:

Sunday, October 31, 2010

Images From My Climbing Days


This is a tossed salad of images of me, my partners and our various climbing adventures over the years.
All of these images were taken by me unless otherwise credited.

Olaf and Peter Prandoni on Mississippi Half Step
Photo: Ken Trout
Steve Morris on Mr Mantle

Ken shot this image from a ledge at the top of the first pitch of Mister Mantle.
Peter and I were doing the first complete tour of the Poe Butress Triligy (Uptown Tooduloo,Mississippi Halfstep,And Edge Of Fright) in one day.
For the full story and more images of Mississippi Half Step and Mr. Mantle Click Here

David Breashears and Steve Wunsch in the Eldorado Canyon parking lot.
David has excelled in Hamalayan Climbing at one time he had summited Mt. Everest more time than any American climber. He has been involved with many major film projects over the years One that I was very loosely involved with was a film called "Free Climb". It was a documentary of a nearly successful ascent of first free ascent Of "Half Dome"in the Yosemite Valley.
His most famous project was an Imax film of an ascent of Mt. Everest. Davids crew was on the mountain when the tragidy occurred that the book "Into Thin Air" was based on. His crew played a critical roll in the rescue effort.
Steve Wunsch had a very successful climbing carrier. He has a vast number of first free ascent all over the country. He is retired from climbing and now occupies a seat on the New York Stock Exchange.
Rob on the Diamond face of Longs Peak..

Olaf bouldering in North Turkey Creek Canyon Photo:Deke Cook
I spent a lot of time climbing,bouldering, and scrambling in North Turkey Creek. It offered a vast array of technically diverse climbs. It's privet land and closed to climbing these days.
I remember running into Art Higbee there and I showed him some of the climbs that I had out up and he had a great time doing them. He told me that I was going to be a real good climber if I stayed with the sport. I was so stoked!

Pat Adams waist belaying Bruce Sposi on the third pitch of XM on The Bastille in Eldorado

Buc Taylor in the parking lot at Longs Peak trail head.
Dave Bell on Tongo, Castle Rock ,Boulder Canyon,Co. 
 Photo: Bob Godfrey

Buc and "Peton Ron" Olevesky on the approach to the Diamond on Longs Peak.

Chip Chase crashing in the back of my van in route to Yosemite

Michael Gilbert in Eldorado Canyon
 Michael played a very dynamic roll in my early climbing days. He and his partner Windle Nesse did early assents of many of the classic hard routes in Eldorado Canyon. I will never forget the time he chewed me out for free soloing Anthill Direct a a 5.8 a steep five pitch mostly face climb in Eldorado Canyon.
We shared some great times in the South Platte and Yosemite over the years. The last time I saw Michael he and his partner overtook us on the "Cruise" in the Black Canyon Of the Gunnison. They finished long before us and left some beer for our courtesy.

The Red Garden Wall in Eldorado Canyon
The prominent arete is The Naked Edge.
I have spent countless days climbing on this rock. Every single feature visible in this image is a world class rock climb.

The North Face of the Bastille in Eldorado Canyon
The Bastille is directly across the canyon from the Red Garden Wall. If you double right click on the image you can see climbing teams on Outer Space, and Marc of Dimes The climbs on this wall are some of the best in the world IMHO.

John Thompson climbing ice in Clear Creek Canyon.
John Thompson is one of my life long friends we shared many adventures over the years.
We did the Northcut Carter route on the north face of Hallott Peak in Rocky Mountain National Park together in late October once and got benighted on top and were forced to bivi on top.
The summit of Hallott Peak is a long boulder field surrounded by cliffs. There was a large amount of dry juniper sticks and I collected a large amount of the dry wood and tried to build a fire to keep warm but was unable to ignite the wood. We spent a very long and cold night out in the open. I could see the lights of the town of Estes Park and imagined how warm all those people were.

David Sweet climbing March of Dimes on the Bastille.
I have crossed paths with David many times over the years. Most of those times have been in the Utah desert. David knew more jokes than just about any one I know. He was great around the campfire.

John Thompson at the belay ledge on the West Buttress of the Bastille
John Has been doing my Tax preparation and other financial things for many years.
He and his father George bought a wonderful mountain property many years ago bordering on Rocky Mountain Park. It was a old gold claim that was producing at one time.
I always loved to stay with the Thompson's when ever I was invited.
I could sit and listen to George tell the most interesting story's about life in Colorado when he was growing up.
One of my favorite stories that George would tell was of he and his friend Archie Hotchkiss hunting deer on horseback.
Archie Hotchkiss's family founded the western slope town of Hotchkiss, Colorado and he was a nephew of Chief Ouray of the Ute Indian tribe.
Robert Anderson in Yosemite.
Robert and I climbed in Colorado and in Yosemite.
He went on to become a famous international mountain climber .
Robert climbed many of the highest mountains in the world.

Tom Cosgriff in Yosemite.
I've shared a few experiences with Tom. This one comes to mind.
We were doing this crack climb call "Outer Limits" on the Cookie Cliff and I was in the middle of the crux on the first Pitch when a earth quake happened. I was using hand and foot jambs while the entire cliff was rocking and rolling. This freaked us out so much that I finished the pitch and rappelled off the climb.

Pat Adams in Eldorado

Noel Childs approaching Moses Tower
The Shadow Of Moses Tower in Taylor Canyon, Utah
This image brings back the memory of the time that Steve Morris and I hung our ropes while rapping down "Pale Fire" at dusk.
I volunteered to climb back to the summit and fix the problem and Steve agreed to lead the rest of the decent.
I had to use some unique techniques to protect this unbelayed pitch. A little free, a little aid you know the drill.
I made it back to the summit and fixed the problem as a magnificent full moon was rising over the horizon. The entire desert was instantly illuminated. That is except for the face that we were descending. I will never forget silhouette of Moses Tower stretching across the expanse of Taylor Canyon.
Moon Over Moses Photo: Stefan Griebel

By the time I arrived back at the ledge it was so dark that I couldn’t see the hand in front of your face. Everything had to be done by feel
Steve set the next two rappels in total darkness. How he found those anchors I will never know.
While having breakfast at the Moab Diner the next day. Steve was asked what we had climbed on this trip. His reply was, “well let’s see, we did Moses last night.”

Scott Woodruff and I shared many pitches in many places.

Art Higbee, Scott Woodruff,and Buc Taylor in Camp Four campground in Yosemite Valley

David Breashears aka "The Kloberdance Kid" bouldering in Eldorado Canyon.
This image reminds me of the first time I met Dave On one perfect October day mt friend Joseph and I had just finished The West Buttress of
the Bastille and were lingering on the summit for a bit when we heard
a voice from just below.
“Is any one up there?"
We looked over the steep edge and there was a young man precariously
hanging on to the tiniest of holds.
He greeted us and calmly and said the he was putting up a new route and said that he needed a GOOD hold.
He asked if we saw any GOOD holds that he could use.
We tried to help by pointing out all the possibilities that we saw.
The guy absorbed all the information we gave and made his decision by
touching each of the possible holds.
He then reversed the moves he had made and down climbed, back under
the overhang.
In a very short time he hailed us again and said,” OK I’m going for it.”
We watched as he reappeared from beneath the overhang and started
working out the thin sequence with calculated, static movements.
Just when I was positive that he had made it, he popped off and disappeared!
All we heard was the clanging of his small rack and a grunt. My
partner and I looked at each other in amazement!
The next thing we heard was him say, "I’m alright!" and Joseph
said, "I assumed that!"
I guess the gear he had placed in under the small roof was sound.
Judging from the amount of time that went by from the moment he pealed
away from the rock and when we heard the rattling gear and thud he
must have fallen pretty far. Back in those days we only wore webbing
around our waists as swami belts.
His young partner Steve Mamman asked if he was going to try it again.
David said" Sure now that I know that nut will hold!"
He once again appeared from below the roof and tried the same sequence with the same results.
After the second fall he pulled the rope and descended.He told us that he
had been following the ethical path of Jim Erickson which meant that
if he fell, he had failed on the route.
I was told by Joseph the guy that I was climbing with that day that he returned the next day and successfully sent the climb.
David Breashears

Ruffus Miller top roping the Bad Ju-Ju Crack in the Cathedral Spires area of the South Platte region of Colorado. Photo: Janice Willy
This photo was taken the day after Noel Childs I lead the climb on it's first assent.
"Bad Ju-Ju" is a severely overhanging crack that Noel Childs and Mike Bearzi found.
After a day of climbing, Noel and I were hiking down from Cynical Pinnacle and asked me if I minded making a detour because he wanted to show me something he had found. I couldn't believe my eyes when I first saw it! I wanted to jump on it that very moment but Noel said that he and Bearzi found it together and they were planning to do it together soon.I told him Cool but I intended to do the second assent of it.
I couldn't get it off my mind! I even had a name for it! Bad Ju-Ju!
Noel had it filed away into his "to do someday" stash and had he been just sitting on it waiting on Bearzi.
I called Bearzi on the phone and he told me that he wasn't in good free climbing shape at that moment and he really didn't have any intention of jumping on the climb any time soon.I expressed how important the route was to me and Mike understood. He gave me his blessing to go for it.
I guess that I was being a real jerk when I told Noel that he had two weeks to find a partner and climb it, or else I was going to.
To make this long story shorter, Noel and I teamed up and did "Bad Ju-Ju" two weeks later.
The Bad Ju Ju Roof/Crack is one of the best single pitches that I have ever put up.
I will accept that Noel should get the credit for the first assent of this beautiful route.
He did find the climb and he placed the bolt on the face section the day before we did it.
The truth is, I was the one that led it. I did take a fall near the lip. I wanted the first ascent real bad so I didn't lower to the ground after my fall(like I should have)! If I had lowered Noel would have had a chance to make a continuous lead through my high point.
Noel did seconded the pitch in good style!
He had trouble getting one of the pieces out near the lip and climbed past it leaving it in. As Ken mentioned in his comment it was tricky down aiding to retrieve it.
I agree with the 5.12 rating and the**** as well!
Good on you, Noel, my old friend!

Ken Trout and I on the north rim of the Black Canyon of the Gunnison after our ascent of the Scenic Cruise route Photo: Edward Gerety

San Carlos,Son, Mexico beach bouldering climber Olaf Mitchell Photo: Mat

  Maurice Reed climbing Englishman's Home at Castle Rock in Boulder Canyon, Colorado Photo: Bob Rotert
Maurice and I climbed a lot together and we put some great first ascents in the South Platte while he was in coledge in Colorado. I have completely lost touch with Maurice and I really miss him. He is like a brother to me. My grand father worked on projects that his grand father contracted. He was a grooms man at my wedding. We have so much history.

Deke Cook clowning around at the ice fall Photo: John Thompson

Edward Gerety on the Nose Route, El Captain

Edward Gerety, Olaf, and Bruce Sposi on the north rim of the Black Canyon of the Gunnison.
Photo: Ken Trout

Deke Cook shows his mastery of French style ice climbing
Photo : John Thompson

Uncle Dick Feather on Kor-Ingles route on Castleton Tower in the Utah desert.
Dick had a real impact on my climbing carrier in that he gave me as much time off as was necessary to work on the routes that I was putting up. He isn't really related to me but he is closer to me and had more positive impact on my development as a man than any of my blood relations.

Olaf soloing at Cabo Pulmo, Baja Sur, Mexico Photo: Mike

Edward Gerety on "The Nose"route onEl Capitan. Yosimite Valley,California

Olaf beach bouldering at San Carlos, Son,Mexico Photo: Matt

Bouldering at John Martin Res S/E C. Photo: Janice Willy

Buc Taylor descending Hallot Peak

The Diamond face of Longs Pk. from the boulder field approach

Olaf on Work Sup 5.9 on Bastille, Eldorado Canyon Photo: Bruce Sposi

John Thompson leading ice in Clear Creek Canyon

Olaf on Hallot Rocky Mountain Nationl Park.
Photo: Buc Taylor

Olaf on D7, on the Diamond Photo: Buc Taylor

Rob and John On the Diamond

Olaf on the Diamond Photo: Buc Taylor

Wide World Of Sports in Zion
I worked for ABC Wide World Of Sports covering a live ascent of Angles Landing click here for the full story.

John Tucky on The Yellow Wall,The Diamond

Olaf on 1'st ascent of Lost In TheWoods,Hallots Pk
Photo :Bruce Sposi

Noel Childs on Mister Mantel a 5.12 friction slab that Maurice Reed and I put up in the South Platte region of Colorado

Buc Taylor and Olaf chilling on the summit of Hallot Pk. .

Olaf on Edge of Fright in the South Platte
Photo : Peter Prandoni

Olaf on Worksup, The Bastille
Photo: Bruce Sposi

Olaf on the first pitch of "Mind Parasite", Independence Pass , Co.
                     Photo: Margi Sposi

Steve Morris on "Primrose Dihedrals" on Moses Tower
Steve Morris on Primrose Dihedrals, Moses Tower

Robert Anderson on "The Nose" route on El Capitan, Yosimite Valley

Olaf on "Super Slab" in Eldorado Canyon, Colorado.
Photo Bruce Sposi

Olaf approaching Ridged Designator, Vail, Co.
Photo: Dan Stone

  Buc Taylor " bivi kitchen" on Longs Pk

Buc Taylor and John Thompson on Notch Couloir , Longs Pk.

Bruce Sposi on Outer Limits, Yosemite Valley

Buc Taylor on "Ridged Designator" ,Vail,Colorado

Bruce Sposi on a winter assent in Eldo.

Peter Prandoni on "Mississippi Halfstep" on "Poe Buttres"
"Cathedral Spires"area of the South Platte region of Colorado

Olaf on Edge Of Fright, Poe Buttress, Cathedral Spires,Splatte

Photo : Peter Prandoni
I would like to acknowledge Rufus's lead on first assent of "Edge of Fright"! Prandoni and I did the second assent of Edge of Fright the same day we climbed the Toodeloo and Halfstep. We were armed with two complete sets of wired nuts and extra draws and biners. If my memory serves me well, we used most of that gear.Noel told me later that Ruffus barly had a full set of wire nuts and some of the sizes were missing. So, he had to climb some very sick and sustained sections with minimal protection.
Olaf on Mind Parasite at Aspen Co.
Photo: Bruce Sposi

The rack for some adventure

Olaf winter climbing in Eldorado Canyon, Colorado.
Photo: Bruce Sposi

Buc Taylor on "The Diamond"
East Face of Longs Peak RMNP, Colorado

Olaf on Primrose Dihedrals Moses Tower
Photo: Steve Morris

Bruce Sposi on "T2" in Eldorado Canyon
Buc Taylor at our Boulder field Bivi site

Scott Wodruff climbing cracks at Indian Creek
photo Dan Harre

Before Friends were invented this was a different game entirely!

Olaf in a hanging belay situation trying to figure out exactly where he is on the rock wall.
Photo: Buc Taylor

Olaf free climbing on Moses Tower
Photo: Steve Morris

Olaf at Red Rocks , Nevada
Photo: Dan Harre

Y.C. in Camp 4

Gary Isac climbing near Aspen, Co

Buc Taylor direct aid climbing on the D7 route of the Diamond face of Longs Pk.

A pack of Platte rats, Steve Morris, Noel Childs, Jerry Rock, and Rodger"Strappo" Hughes
Olaf free climbing Photo: Buc Taylor

Olaf on the West Buttress of the Bastille
Photo:Deke Cook

Olaf on Primrose Dihedrals, Moses Tower
Photo: Steve Morris

Deek Cook on "Hair City" In Eldorado Canyon

Mike Gilbert and Windel Ness on a very early ascent of "Genesis" in Eldorado Canyon.

Olaf belaying Steve Sanford on Bishop Jaggers in the splatte
Photo: John Thompson

Olaf rapping from ChasmView into The Diamond
Photo: Buc Taylor

Olaf belaying Buc Taylor on The Diamond
Photo Buc Taylor

The late Chip Salaun doing botany research on the Diamond

Olaf , Scott Woodruff, and Art Higbee in Camp 4 campground in Yosemite Valley Photo Buc Taylor

Bruce Sposi in Eldorado Canyon
Jim Erickson in Eldorado

Steve Matous in Yosemite

Very tired Olaf at Table Ledge near the top of the Diamond
Photo; Buc Taylor

Olaf on Edge Of Fright On Poe Buttress
Photo: Peter Prandoni

Steve Matouse friction climbing on Glacier Point Apron in the Yosemite Valley

Olaf on Table ledge at the top of the Diamond
Photo: Buc Taylor

Buc Taylor approaching the Diamond

Olaf on Mind Parasite