New record set on the Nose; what does this mean for climbing?

El Capitan

Another record. Soon to be broken.

I’ve touched on this topic before; the morphing of traditional outdoor adventure into adrenaline-driven feats of one-upsmanship. The biggest wave, the steepest ski run.

Climbing for speed isn’t anything new and by all means, the history of mountaineering is filled with tales of those trying to be first. However, even for guys as accomplished as Dean (I’ll free slackline over anything) Potter and Sean Leary, and their competitors, no good will come from turning 3,000 foot vertical monoliths into the proverbial catch-all urinal for a speed-climb pissing contest.

Does being the fastest to the top really measure a climber’s skill? Or merely the depth of their Karma? These guys don’t need to prove anything. The entire climbing world knows their names.

Maybe I’m just a purist, hating on the idea of outdoor recreation becoming competitive among its participants. Can’t it just be about us learning to embrace, not beat, Mother Nature? I don’t know; maybe this is just the natural progression of mankind’s contemporary propensity to turn everything into a statistic or record, a throw-away commodity to be put on a shelf for a while, only to be soon neglected under dust and disposable memories. Like bowling trophies and bronzed baby shoes.

I don’t know, maybe I just like to climb.

Sender Films’ First Ascent series sweeping outdoor film fests

It may seem like an odd juxtaposition, but I love movies about as much as I do the outdoors. So yeah, drive-ins pretty much rock. And speaking of films that rock, Sender Films has assembled a series of outdoor adventure films around climbing and mountaineering that appear to hit all the right themes with the all right people in the most challenging rock-and-ice-wilderness extremes. Each one looks as if it was shot with a true respect for its specific milieu by experienced outdoor film makers. Check it out the trailer above and order it here.

Ascent Adventure Team summits Kilimanjaro

Mt. Killimanjaro

Congrats to the Ascent Adventure Team

Congratulations to the North Carolina-based Ascent Adventure team for their recent summit of Kilimanjaro. Brandon Hensinger, lead guide and owner of Ascent, has been planning the trip for almost two years.

Brandon said in the most recent company newsletter, “After 2 years in the making, Mt Kilimanjaro was summited by the Ascent Adventure Consultants team in the beginning of February! Joe Love (PA), Joseph Jacobs (CA), Moira Ringo (NC), and Brandon Hensinger (NC) made up the team. The experience was beyond description. Being up on a mountain, away from all the hustle and bustle of life has truly changed our lives for the good, and we are so thankful for the opportunity to have done it! Moira Ringo has written a wonderful trip log that we are posting by the day on our blog.”

You can check out Ms. Ringo’s trip reports here. And the team has loaded images from the trip as well. Have a look.