The Cleanest Line

Climbing

Lean and mean. Using only tiny granite edges and small blobs of ice, Chris Mutzel finds the first pitch of Exocet on Aguja Standhardt to be run out, rime-covered and extra-heady. Argentine Patagonia. Photo: Austin Siadak

Inclement Gifts

By Rolando Garibotti   |   Dec 14, 2018 December 14, 2018

Weather has a way of complicating—and enriching—everything. By the time I top out, it’s snowing and it’s dark. I walk back as far as the rope will let me, and in the flattest spot I can find, I dig a hole and sit, bracing myself. I yell, “Rope-fixed!” repeatedly, but… Read More

The approach to advanced base camp was threatened by large seracs 
 above. We started very early, hoping 
 to beat the sun and falling ice. Chantel and I moved as fast as we could through this crevassed area to get to a point of relative safety. Photo: Jason Thompson

What Was Left

By Anne Gilbert Chase   |   Dec 10, 2018 December 10, 2018

After a failed first attempt, three friends return to India’s Mount Nilkantha to confront—and embrace—the terrible, beautiful duality of a life in the mountains. It was our third day on the southwest face of Mount Nilkantha, what we’d thought would be our summit day, and it was my lead block. Read More

Quinn on January 14, 2018. Estes Park, Colorado. Photo: Tim Davis

Letting Go

By Quinn Brett   |   Oct 8, 2018 October 8, 2018

A climber describes her passion for the wildness of the world. My brother’s cheeks smooshed against the blue velour seat and his mouth hung slightly ajar. His gangly legs stretched from door to door, covering the back bench of our family Buick. On the floor, parallel, I fidgeted over the… Read More

Photo: Gary Regester

Tom Frost, Off Belay

By Patagonia   |   Aug 25, 2018 August 25, 2018

Patagonia mourns the loss of Tom Frost, Yvon Chouinard’s former climbing and business partner, who passed away Friday morning. Tom, with Yvon, Chuck Pratt and Royal Robbins, made the first ascent of the North America Wall of El Capitan in 1964. He made other notable first ascents with Valley pioneers… Read More

Colin Haley climbs Afanassieff Ridge on the west face of Chaltén. Photo: Austin Siadak

Images from the Chaltén Climbing Season

By Colin Haley   |   Apr 26, 2018 April 26, 2018

On the Argentine side of the Patagonian Andes, the Chaltén Massif is a dense range of extremely steep mountains, famous for Cerro Torre and Chaltén itself (the native name for the peak also known as Fitz Roy). I have been coming to this mountain range on an annual basis since… Read More

Sonnie and his family in Yosemite, one of countless stops they’ll make over the course of their year on the road. Photo: Sonnie Trotter

The Only Constant Is Change

By Sonnie Trotter   |   Jul 12, 2018 July 12, 2018

I’m sitting on a sunny bench in some random park in central Oregon holding my eight-month-old daughter in my arms and watching my four-year-old son launch himself down a slide. We’ve been on the road as a family for nearly a month now, and the daily hunt for a decent… Read More

Emptying rocks from the shoes atop Mt. Russell, with a view a Mt. Whitney. Photo: Erik Schulte

California 14er-fest

By Erik Schulte   |   May 30, 2018 May 30, 2018

Groggily I stirred in the sweaty musk of my sleeping bag. I’d spent the night on the hard concrete slab directly outside the Independence campground’s pit toilets, with the wafting stench of shit enveloping my fitful slumber. I shut my eyes, trying to forget where I was. My hips were… Read More

If you love something, set it free. Eliza Kerr watches daughter Calliope (13) as she lowers herself out and begins to jug the infamous Nipple Pitch during the first known mother-daughter ascent of the Zodiac, El Capitan. Yosemite National Park, California. Photo: Eliza Kerr

Letter from a Mother to Her Village

By Eliza Kerr   |   May 11, 2018 May 11, 2018

May 14, 2017, Mother’s Day. Dear friends, yesterday I topped out on the Zodiac on El Capitan. Some of you have loyally and patiently supported me for almost six months while I prepared for and fretted about this adventure. Some of you have no idea what the Zodiac is. No… Read More

Photo: Ken Etzel

Alex Megos Sends Perfecto Mundo

By Patagonia   |   May 10, 2018 May 10, 2018

Yesterday, Alex Megos sent one of the most difficult routes in the world, completing the first ascent of Perfecto Mundo (5.15c or 9b+) at the limestone crag of Margalef in Catalunya, Spain. He called it the first hard route of his life. It marked not an apex,… Read More

Simon navigating toward the block of rock atop the Cairn Gorm plateau. Photo: Kelly Cordes

Into the Whiteout

By Kelly Cordes   |   Apr 16, 2018 April 16, 2018

It had been a while. I don’t climb in weather like this. I stay inside and drink coffee. But I dutifully marched through the whiteout, following Simon as he navigated by compass toward the highland plateau of Cairn Gorm. He was searching for a particular block of rock, from which… Read More

Artwork: Walker Cahall

Escape from Beacon Rock

By The Dirtbag Diaries   |   Mar 23, 2018 March 23, 2018

“For me, it was a way to stay connected, literally: tied to my free-range daughter by a length of 10-millimeter climbing rope, and connected to my own dream of being an adventurer,” says David Altschul. “And that was how I found myself, a few days later, on a ledge, high… Read More

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