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By Aeryn
Jan 7, 2013
Me
Not sure how accessible Chouinard's 72 catalog is, but here's part of what it said, for anyone who's interested. Seems as smart today as it was 40 years ago... Doug Robinson's the author. Proud that this is a part of climbing history.

But every climb is not for every climber; the ultimate climbs are not democratic. The fortunate climbs protect themselves by being unprotecable and remain a challenge that can only be solved by boldness and commitment backed solidly by technique. Climbs that are forced clean by the application of boldness should be similarly respected, lest a climber be guilty of destroying a line for the future's capable climbers to satisfy his impatient ego in the present - by waiting he might become one of the future capables. Waiting is also necessary; every climb has its time, which need not be today. Besides leaving alone what one cannot climb in good style, there are some practical corollaries of boldness in free climbing. Learning to climb down is valuable for retreating from a clean and bold place that gets too airy. And having the humility to back off rather than continue in bad style - a thing well begun is not lost. The experience cannot be taken away. By such systems there can never again be "last great problems" but only "next great problems". Carried out these practices would tend to lead from quantitative to qualitative standards of climbing, an assertion that the climbing experience cannot be measured by an expression of pitches per hour, that a climb cannot be reduced to maps and decimals. That the motions of climbing, the sharpness of the environment, the climber's reactions are still only themselves, and their dividends of joy personal and private.

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By climber pat
From Las Cruces, NM
Jan 7, 2013
Amen!

Did anything in particular make you think of this writing?

FLAG
By Larry DeAngelo
Administrator
From Las Vegas, NV
Jan 7, 2013
!
The quote is from Doug Robinson's "The Whole Natural Art of Protection." The entire text is here:

climbaz.com/chouinard72/chouin...

This article was super inspirational to all climbers I knew back then, and was the trigger of what was referred to as the "clean climbing revolution."

FLAG
By wivanoff
Jan 7, 2013
High Exposure
I remember that article. Wish more of us still felt that way.

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By TWK
Jan 7, 2013
Those of us who remember when the article came out were spiritually and ethically transformed by its simple clarity and shining brilliance.

Today, even though all climbers have inherited Robinson's legacy, those who were influenced by him in the past are now routinely dismissed as hopelessly out-of-date (still using hexes, Sticht belay plates, figure 8 descenders, and rigid stem Friends) by many who likely have never heard of Doug Robinson.

We should all take a break from drying out boulder problems with torches, and sit back to read that 1972 treatise.

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By flynn
Jan 7, 2013
Through a massive, complicated stroke of luck, that catalog came into my possession as a gift in the early 1980s. I still have it, of course, but hadn't read this essay in quite a long time. Thank you for reminding me of how eloquent it was and is, and for sharing the privilege of reading it with other, younger-on-the-rock climbers.

FLAG
By Woodchuck ATC
Jan 7, 2013
Rock Wars, RRG, 2008
Remember it well,,,had the catalog somewhere in my magazine collection here until a mistaken clean out a couple years ago....sadly missed keeping it.

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By Aeryn
Jan 8, 2013
Me
climber pat wrote:
Amen! Did anything in particular make you think of this writing?


It's something I read often and try to live by. The ethic of self-control, as David Breashears described it, is, in large part, why climbing appeals to me and what elevates it over other athletic endeavors. It can be hard to find like-minded climbers, so to all those that responded - you're welcome at my fire anytime.

FLAG
 
By RKM
From Alpine, Utah
Jan 8, 2013
Another day at Red Rocks. <br /> <br />Photo by Joanne Urioste
Wow! This is just fantastic. Thanks for a great reminder. I have the catalog – still, in perfect condition and treasure it like a rare book. I know some of the particulars of this production from back then. It was in large part driven by Tom Frost and the cover design by Doreen Frost.

To aspire to great climbs and then climb them with boldness and confidence was the goal. Falling was bad form in that era.

And the greatest reminiscence that this post brought back to me was my mantra for years – over and over – in my head;

“Relax your mind, Relax your mind, you’ve got to Relax your mind.”

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By "H"
From Manitou Springs
Jan 8, 2013
Axes glistening in the sun
Pretty sweet. Have any of you seen 180 degrees south? Or read his book.."Let My People Go Surfing?" Both really good. He's a pretty intense guy for sure.

“How you climb a mountain is more important than reaching the top.”
¯ Yvon Chouinard, Let My People Go Surfing: The Education of a Reluctant Businessman.

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By Gunkiemike
Jan 8, 2013
"H" wrote:
Pretty sweet. Have any of you seen 180 degrees south? Or read his book.."Let My People Go Surfing?" Both really good. He's a pretty intense guy for sure. “How you climb a mountain is more important than reaching the top.” ¯ Yvon Chouinard, Let My People Go Surfing: The Education of a Reluctant Businessman.


I HIGHLY recommend that book.

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By TWK
Jan 8, 2013
RKM wrote:
To aspire to great climbs and then climb them with boldness and confidence was the goal. Falling was bad form in that era.


I believe I remember a quote from that catalog, or another of Chouinard's early musings, something to the effect of:

"On rock, the leader should not fall; on ice, the leader must not fall."

Does anyone know the source of this (now romantic) wisdom?

FLAG
By RKM
From Alpine, Utah
Jan 8, 2013
Another day at Red Rocks. <br /> <br />Photo by Joanne Urioste
TWK, I have heard that quote also. I think - if memory serves me right - it was Gaston Rebuffat. He wrote so many great books and this might be in Starlight and Storm.

It is also worth pointing out that great quote on the back of the cover from Albert Einstein; A perfection of means and confusion of aims seems to be our main problem. I've used that quote in a variety of situation over the years.

FLAG


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