Monday, November 16, 2009

Do We Only "Tolerate" Our Rock Climbing?

I've been thinking a lot recently about what I want to say on this blog other than what's coming up in new climbing areas and guidebooks. That IS what this blog is mainly about...A place where people go to check in with what's happening or where they tell the shuswap/okanagan what's happening.

But because I write in this blog I feel I should have my personal touches to it as well. A question commonly enters my head:

How important is local climbing to you? Is it more than just a place to train or practice so you can REALLY put it down else where? Are your accomplishments more note worthy when they are in popular areas? Does our area simply lack the quality routes that are out there... somewhere?

Personally I think the grass is always greener on the other side of the fence. But why? We have quality routes nearby. Lots of potential for more. We have multi-pitch around here. There are aid climbing routes to try. And we have Really hard projects just sitting there waiting for someone strong enough to push the local grades.
Do we just Love road trips?



  1. hhmmmm, that's a really tough one... I suppose that one might find that extra reward in doing something exceptional away from home, because something exceptional at your doorstep is like; "oh it's his backyard", "oh that's the style she's used too", "oh he probably just practiced it a million times" yadda yadda, Where one something exceptional is accomplished out in the big bad world, then it's like; "wow, he went away from what he's familiar with, away from his comfort zone to someone else's back yard and laid it down!"

    Plus I think we just want what we can not have, when it is right there in front of us, it just isn't as enticing as something we have to go out and chase down.

    When it comes down to it, is climbing not challenging the unknown, taking ourselves to that place where it all feels against us and then rising above it! If so, it feels more in context, and less familiar the farther we go from our backdoor. That's what figure anyway.
    --Chris Davies-- aka

  2. Aha ! A subject after my own heart. Local climbing is very important to me. In fact thats most of what I do. Yup, I'm addicted. After 30+ years I guess I have to admit I'm not really just in training for some far away exotic ascent of Mt Shityerpantz or somewhere.
    I climb here because it's fun. I enjoy the distant crags but mostly I figure every hour I spend traveling is taking away from one I could spend touching rock. Really life's pretty short and no matter how hard you try there's only so many climbing days.

    I've put up my share of new routes and it's always privilege and a rush but no, not really for the glory. In fact looking at some of the routes I've done, the word glory would not really apply. But I am proud of what I have accompished and I'm nowhere near done.

    I'm sure there are no new local Half Domes to be discovered but theres lots of unclimbed rock, lots of challenges and I think its the challenge aspect that keeps me pulling the rope out of my pack. I agree with Chris about facing the unknown and rising above it, thats where the joy is.

    Big subject but that's some of the reason why I climb. Thanks Jordan, for starting this blog. When are you "going public" with your Sicamous/ Mara routes?

    more later................doug

  3. Dang! Well put Doug! You just got me really inspired on the close to home rock! Very good points! Big subject indeed! It's funny, when you spend time thinking about what you value in rock climbing, there is an incredible spectrum of elements that we all enjoy so much! The roots of our enjoyment go not only deep, but they span way out in so many directions! Very cool!
    --chris davies==

  4. Good points all! I love the idea of bringing my desire and goals inward toward home. Magazines and videos always have our minds wandering to the pot of gold climbs at the end of the climbing rainbow. But what could be more inspiring than giving your all to climbing your best at HOME?

    The Mara and Sicamous area climbing mini guide is in progress...

    Basically I have to put it together. I could have it done this week, but I'm procrastinating hard...BUT NO MORE!

    Thanks for all your routes and work in salmon arm Doug. I'd like to connect with you about what else you guys have been doing climbing here!

  5. Brandon Orchard
    I always enjoy climbing locally. Only having to drive a short distance is always nice. In the Shuswap we do have climbing for all levels available. I am finding that as I grow older and hopefully wiser, that I should be spending more time with my family. But I also know that in order for myself to stay "sane," I need to do something outside. Climbing has become that "thing" I love to do, the "thing" that can make me forget about debts and the car needing new breaks. (I drive standards so I don't need breaks much).
    So I agree with Doug M. that "every hour I spend traveling is taking away from one I could spend touching rock." Since I feel at this time I shouldn't be away for days on end, from my family. That is why local climbing is becoming so important to me.
    In order for local areas to be more enjoyable with more quality and classic routes, this needs to happen. The more people who climb local, the cleaner the routes will be. Also the trails to a crag will remain more visible, with slower vegetation growth. The point i am trying to say is, "the more you climb local, the better your local crags will be."

    Its great to see your doing well Doug M. You were my first contact where I found out info on the Shuswap, six years ago. Its great to hear from somebody with so much knowledge and history of the Shuswap. I know Jordan and I, along with others are excited to have everybody from the original mountaineers group in Salmon Arm share there opinions, knowledge and stories (along with everybody else of course).
    Talk again later,
    Brandon Orchard

  6. Climbing local is great! I have done alot of it! I have climbed most every route in Salmon Arm and Vernon. But after a while if you climb enough, you might get burnt out just climbing local.
    Correct: "every hour I spend traveling is taking away from one I could spend touching rock"
    But nothing is better than trying to onsite a wall full of climbs that you have never been on. Not often you can do that local.
    I got so sick of local climbing that I never went climbing to Haines or Cougar for 2 years. I only climbed non-local. When I finally got back to them, it was awesome! I love the local routes, so many amazing lines around.
    Am I running in circles here or what? I just think it is important to keep a balance.

    Mr,Mrs or possibly Ms Anonymous

  7. It is so lucky that i come here accidently, the aundant resources makes me excited,thank you!
    By Jordan Sneaker

  8. HI!
    I was wondering if this is the same Shuswap Climbing network on Facebook. If so do you ever meet in Blind Bay? We moved here three years ago and are looking to meet more outdoorsy people and want to explore our area but are not sure where to start.
    Some advice from you would be more than appreciated!