Mountaineering is one of those odd activities.  In the days and weeks leading up to a climb, it’s pretty exciting.  I like preparing, and sorting through gear reminds me of movies I watched when I was a kid; you know the ones where the heroes put their kit together before they fought for intergalactic freedom. And, visualizing each step along a route has a real zen aspect to it.

The climb itself is, um, fun too… Well, the truth is, it’s a strange kind of fun.  It’s risky, painful, slow, dark, cold, wet, lonely, hungry, thirsty, and uncomfortable in all kind of ways.  While it’s happening, I’ll be honest: I often wonder to myself: What am I doing here?  But after a “successful” climb, which really means getting up and down in one piece, my body and mind reboot and all I can think of is: When can we do it again?  

Not soon enough.

The photograph was taken by my climbing partner, Brian Wilson, on the summit of Mt. President in Canada’s Yoho National Park; 21 July 2015.