Weekend climber, scrambler and backcountry skier from Calgary, Alberta, Canada. Picture is at Abbot pass looking down at lake Oesa in early August after a snow storm ended an attempt on Victoria.
See trip plans page for a lists of trips I have not done yet, may be interested in doing or may do over.
I really enjoy new mountains/routes and experiences. The mental exercise of figuring out the route or puzzle is rewarding. The mystery of the unknown gives a trip the extra appeal although I also enjoy repeating most mountains as every trip is unique. Different people, conditions, time of year, weather, fast/slow, more knowledge, different perspective, etc. Trips are not just a physical challenge for me but also a mental experience so they should be enjoyed on many levels versus the physical workout or how fast they can be done. Every mountain and route has its own appeal and sometimes the research and planning can be almost as much fun as the doing. Not as focused on lists as I was when younger. I am more interested in doing things that are challenging, interesting or just plain fun versus slogging up something because it is on a list. Quality versus quantity.
Every one needs a certain amount of challenge, adversity, adventure and excitement in their lives. It adds purpose and meaning. The level of challenge is the quintessential question – it can feel good to get turned back as that raises the value of the activity. A climb can be boring or feel cheap if things go too easily. Of course lots of good challenges and some of the best quality suffering can be found in the Canadian Rockies.
Climbing trips are contrived adventure as there is often easier ways up mountains or they can be done in easier conditions. Many trips are truly “Expeditions to Nowhere” but they can fulfill some base need in us. Climbing is a raw form of self expression. Most of the herd need to fit in, be similar and feel part of the whole. A few of us have a strong need to feel individual, different and unique. We do not want to be just a number or a drone. We have to prove this individuality internally to ourselves over and over and one way to do it is climbing. Nothing focuses the mind, squeezes out the worlds problems and says individuality like full engagement/all in climbing.
I like this quote from Wolfgang Schaub (65)who is currently the first person to climb all 49 highpoints in Europe ” Later in your life, when you are getting older and worn out, you will discover the pleasures of nonsense. Climbing is applied nonsense. And a nice, attractive form. I just explore the spectrum to its fullest.”