What do you look for in a climbing partner? Stoke, strength, or most importantly, suffering with you and feeding you cookies on top of pitch twelve? Hopefully the latter.

This episode is brought to you by Dirtbag Climbers. Music: “Waiting for the Moment That Never Comes” by Lee Rosevere.

For the love of climbing (3)

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(MALE VOICE): I’m sorry this is so late. I meant to do this sooner, but I’ve been extremely busy. I know, that’s a terrible excuse. Anyways, I miss you and–we should climb soon, together, in the desert. And yeah, here I go.

As a climber, I have struggled with the image of myself as a partner. My biggest issue is that I never felt like I was good enough for anybody, regardless of how hard you climbed or however, you know, much stoke you had or anything like that. Like, I just, I never felt like I was enough. Any time someone new offered to climb with me, was always insanely hesitant. I was beyond shy. I just, I couldn’t bring myself to climb with somebody new, in a, in a personal, partner-by-partner setting.

In the end, I learned to overcome that because…no one gives a shit how rad you are. All you can do in this world is just be the best partner you can for anybody else. I still struggle with it, day-to-day, but really, what it comes down to is when you’re adventuring outside, you need to have a partner and to be the best partner that you can be for somebody else is something huge for me.

Thinking back on my days of climbing and, you know, skiing and adventuring in general, some of my happiest moments undoubtedly are on top. You know, you get to the top of a route, a pitch, a tour and you look around you and you’re just–you’re so stunned. Everything is amazing, life is beautiful that day. But I’ve come to realize that, you know, you get to the top of something and you’re at the pinnacle but you still have to get down. And for myself, I’ve come to realize that my favorite times are, you know, when you finally get back to the ground or to the car and you’re turning off your beacon or taking off your harness. You’re looking your buddy in the eye and you’re just so happy to be back. Those are my happiest moments.

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