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Wade308


Oct 22, 2012, 11:23 AM
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Re: [oldguy53] older climbers [In reply to]
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I refuse to get old.


gunkiemike


Oct 22, 2012, 1:54 PM
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A ripe old 56 TODAY.

Entered my first ever climbing comp yesterday and didn't embarrass myself too badly.


Partner robdotcalm


Oct 22, 2012, 2:27 PM
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Re: [oldguy53] older climbers [In reply to]
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Time to contribute, since I think that at 82 Iím the oldest active-climber on rc.com. So far this year Iíve had a decent season in Colorado and Wyoming having climbed outdoors 52 days and am looking forward to an upcoming trip to Joshua Tree. (Iíve climbed a few days in the gym but donít keep track of that). With 6 grandkids and their 4 sets of parents local, family activities and social obligations limit my climbing time (Iím not complaining, just describing; Iím glad to have the family close by). At my age Iím grateful that Iím still walking ( as so many of my contemporaries have problems with that) and have a sense of thankfulness each time I climb that Iím still able to. If you had asked me 20 years ago, if Iíd still be climbing when I was 82, I would have said, ďProbably, not.Ē In terms of probabilities that was a good answer. A lot of luck is involved in being able to stay active as one gets old. I take my climbing seasons one at a time. I look forward to climbing next year and thatís as far ahead as I can contemplate.

Yesterday, reminded me of my luck. For a starter, my wife and I attended the third funeral in a month for one of our contemporaries. In the evening, we went to a concert and met two more of our contemporaries. One was using cane for his hip. The second recently had spinal surgery for degenerated disks. Lots of hardware installed. This fellow always has kept in good shape--six months ago, he had hiked a 14er. No injury involved in disksí deterioration.

I started climbing when I was 41 so that Iíve now been climbing for 41 years--half my life. I currently lead trad 5.8 (sometimes having to work at it a bit) and follow 5.9--from slab to wide cracks. This is a noticeable decrease from what I could do years ago. For example, this summer I followed a 5.8 that I thought was hard. In 1991, I on-sight soloed the route and thought it was easy. If youíre going to keep climbing as you get really old, say past 75 or possibly 70, youíll have to enjoy doing easier climbs. Iíve know a couple of climbers, who, when their abilities started declining, no longer enjoyed the sport and stopped. Thatís not been the case for me. I enjoy being challenged, and the easier climbs now challenge me.

My upper body strength has stayed OK, at body weight 135 I do chinups with 50 lbs in a backpack. There is a significant decline in my maximal aerobic capacity so that Iím slow on approaches and appreciative when my younger partners (well, they are all younger than me) will carry most of the gear. Alpine routes are no longer feasible because of my slowness and even some crags, e.g., Sundance at Lumpy Ridge, now seem too far to be enjoyable. Fortunately, the places that I climb the most Eldorado, Vedauwoo, and Joshua Tree have predominately short approaches with little elevation gain. And, of course, when youíre old, recovery time takes longer.

My wife doesnít climb, but we enjoy hiking and weight lifting together. Iíve lifted weights regularly for 60 years. There have been many discussions on rc.com on whether or not lifting is helpful for climbing, and Iím not entering into how it applies to younger climbers. I know that if I didnít lift, I would lack the sturdiness to climb and the muscle mass needed for strength. Also, high-repetition medium weight squats keep my knees functional including an arthritic, off-injured left knee. Hiking, even with a heavy pack, does not provide the same therapeutic benefit. I have a nice 425 sq. ft. lifting room at home (enclosed patio). All my lifting is done with free weightsóno machines.

This summer and last, my partners and I managed to put in a few first ascents at Vedauwoo. (http://www.mountainproject.com/...playground/105972860) Sarah Palinís Drill, Day of Wrath, Panhandle, Barbed Wire. (From the description of Barbed Wire, there may not be a second ascent.) To finish leading it (onsight, ground up), I removed all my gear except for my harness, squiggled up the exit crack and then retrieved the gear with a sling when I got to the belay stance on shelf. Fun stuff for an old man. (There are some nasty comments about me on the MP page, but at my age itís satisfying to still be able to create controversy.)

Attached image is getting ready for another day's work at Vedauwoo

Cheers,
Rob.calm


(This post was edited by robdotcalm on Oct 22, 2012, 2:43 PM)
Attachments: R with Valley Giant.jpg (73.6 KB)


gblauer
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Oct 22, 2012, 6:29 PM
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Re: [robdotcalm] older climbers [In reply to]
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It would be an honor to climb with you and rgold.

I am at the gunks...Rgold will you climb with me sometime?
Colorado may be more problematic but feasible if you would climb with me.

I would like to climb well into my 80's as well.

Take good care!


oldrnotboldr


Oct 23, 2012, 5:17 AM
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Re: [oldguy53] older climbers [In reply to]
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Wow, what a bunch of old farts! Last I knew (last year I think- I forget) I was pushing 59. Used to climb pretty hard (5.10, 5.12). Last five years or so I do more bouldering and low grade stuff. There are a few others around up north here that still climb, a couple of them climb 5.9 or better.

If you ever get north of Ind. look us up. There is still plenty of unclimbed crags in northern Ontario. Some pretty easy to 5.12 or better!


TradEddie


Oct 23, 2012, 7:12 AM
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Re: [oldrnotboldr] older climbers [In reply to]
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I was beginning to feel that impending doom as I reached my late thirties, but one day up in New Paltz, Gail mentioned that "some old guy" was giving a slide show in R&S, that "old guy" was Fred Beckey, who qualifies as old by any measure. After that show I realized that I was still very young, and could never use age as an excuse.

TE


oldguy53


Oct 23, 2012, 6:46 PM
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It seems no matter what time , no matter what age THE ADVENTURE CONTINUES. I've gain new insight, some knowledge, perhaps wisdom. thanks to all. bobo


jorgegonzalez


Oct 23, 2012, 9:09 PM
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Re: [oldguy53] older climbers [In reply to]
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I'm 57 and my first lead was the Bastille Crack in 1974 with a 16 year old Lenny Coyne. Slowing down a bit but still lead 5.9 trad, and although I'm dicey on steep climbs, I'm still a monster on slab and cracks.

I ride an Andalusian stallion most mornings and regularly ride a bike, ski often in the winter, and am now a soccer coach/intermediate referee (U-14/16).

I once had a partner older than myself who kept putting off a planned climb in the Sierras. When I confronted his lack of dedication to the objective he told me: "The difference between you and I is you see all those climbs you haven't done and still hope to do them. I see the same climbs and wish I had already done them."


(This post was edited by jorgegonzalez on Oct 23, 2012, 9:12 PM)


JohnCook


Oct 24, 2012, 6:04 AM
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Re: [oldguy53] older climbers [In reply to]
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63, still leading English E2 outdoors, F7a+ indoors. Only climb routes that look fun. Total mileage since January when I returned to the UK from USA approx 55 000ft of routes from 5.4 onwards. I have promised my mother that I will stop climbing when I grow up! Hence I still do stupid childish things. And intend to continue climbing until they are screwing the lid down! (Even then I may try to climb out of the box)


yanqui


Oct 24, 2012, 6:59 AM
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Re: [oldguy53] older climbers [In reply to]
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I'm 54 going on 55, with more than 30 years of climbing experiences around the world, but after reading through this thread, I've decided I'm still too young to have anything relevant to say. Maybe I'll post back, again, after I've climbed another 20 or 30 years. Maybe then I'll actually have something of interest to add.


Partner robdotcalm


Oct 24, 2012, 8:40 AM
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Re: [gblauer] older climbers [In reply to]
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gblauer wrote:
It would be an honor to climb with you and rgold.

I am at the gunks...Rgold will you climb with me sometime?
Colorado may be more problematic but feasible if you would climb with me.

I would like to climb well into my 80's as well.

Take good care!

Let me know when you're planning on coming to Colorado. I look forward to climbing with you.

Cheers,
Rob.calm


Partner rgold


Oct 24, 2012, 11:54 AM
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Re: [gblauer] older climbers [In reply to]
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Sure Gail! Be warned that I'm still rehabbing a torn ACL and am coming off a 7-month layoff, so have to tone it down a bit, but other than that I'd be happy climb with you.

Like you, I'm in awe of RobDot. In addition to climbing, pullups with 37% of bodyweight added is mighty impressive. I don't even know if I'll live into my 80's, but if so I hope I can still climb, and being able to do any kind of pullup would be nice too...


sharensmith


Oct 24, 2012, 9:53 PM
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I just keep my gears well and inspect them before using.


oldguy53


Oct 25, 2012, 5:43 AM
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Re: [robdotcalm] older climbers [In reply to]
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robdotcalm---- Are you still doing routes like the South Face of the Petit Grepon?? I finished the Standard route 11 years ago and have been stormed off the South Face. I would like to take care of unfinished business. I need a carrot in front of my face to keep my training on track. Possible???????? bobo


jgill


Oct 25, 2012, 11:53 AM
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Re: [rgold] older climbers [In reply to]
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Rob and Rich,

Great to hear you are staying very active, fighting the good fight.
Long may you run . . . !

My best to you both,
John Cool


Partner robdotcalm


Oct 25, 2012, 12:39 PM
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Re: [rgold] older climbers [In reply to]
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rgold wrote:
Sure Gail! Be warned that I'm still rehabbing a torn ACL and am coming off a 7-month layoff, so have to tone it down a bit, but other than that I'd be happy climb with you.

Like you, I'm in awe of RobDot. In addition to climbing, pullups with 37% of bodyweight added is mighty impressive. I don't even know if I'll live into my 80's, but if so I hope I can still climb, and being able to do any kind of pullup would be nice too...

Rich,

Thanks for your kind comments, which are encouraging and appreciated.

I had a prosthetic ACL installed (1991) and then uninstalled (2010).The picture shows me with the uninstalled tibia screw after the 2010 surgery. Recovery in both cases was OK. Pretty much back to normal after a few months. Hope your knee works OK and good climbing.

Rob.calm

(This post was edited by robdotcalm on Oct 25, 2012, 12:43 PM)
Attachments: screw 002a.jpg (146 KB)


Partner robdotcalm


Oct 25, 2012, 12:52 PM
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Re: [oldguy53] older climbers [In reply to]
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oldguy53 wrote:
robdotcalm---- Are you still doing routes like the South Face of the Petit Grepon?? I finished the Standard route 11 years ago and have been stormed off the South Face. I would like to take care of unfinished business. I need a carrot in front of my face to keep my training on track. Possible???????? bobo

As I mentioned upstream, approaches are an issue for me. The four miles uphill getting to the Petit makes it impractical for me. On high peaks like that with a long approach, I'd be concerned that my stamina would not be up to what's needed. I think Nun's Buttress in Estes Valley that I climbed in 2010 may be my last climb having a significant approach. See my comments at http://www.mountainproject.com/...05749056#a_106974505

Rob.calm


Syd


Oct 25, 2012, 1:16 PM
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climbingaggie03 wrote:
I'm 31 and I can still climb 5.9, I know it won't last forever, but maybe for another couple of years I'll be able to enjoy it.

Are you kidding ? "Still climb 5.9" ? I'm still improving at 64. I thought I'd plateaued until I bought a hangboard a couple of years back. I'm close to doing a 5.12a clean and my goal is a 5.12c. I think I'd read about a guy 59 doing 5.13d.


Syd


Oct 25, 2012, 1:25 PM
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Re: [robdotcalm] older climbers [In reply to]
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robdotcalm wrote:
Time to contribute, since I think that at 82 ...

Fantastic ! Congratulations on being such an inspiration.

I can see the only reason for ever slowing down is injury. As we get older, we heal slower and gain a growing list of medical problems. I've often wondered what age will be my peak ? It's obviously very different for different people.


climbingaggie03


Oct 25, 2012, 2:01 PM
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Re: [Syd] older climbers [In reply to]
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Syd wrote:
climbingaggie03 wrote:
I'm 31 and I can still climb 5.9, I know it won't last forever, but maybe for another couple of years I'll be able to enjoy it.

Are you kidding ? "Still climb 5.9" ? I'm still improving at 64. I thought I'd plateaued until I bought a hangboard a couple of years back. I'm close to doing a 5.12a clean and my goal is a 5.12c. I think I'd read about a guy 59 doing 5.13d.

Honestly, yes, it's more like 5.7, but I can top rope 5.9 sometimes


budman


Oct 25, 2012, 2:40 PM
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I don't worry too much about getting old except the fear of forgetting my children's names and things like that. Had the ultimate complement from a 5 year old at The Ice Cream Parlor this past weekend. After climbing with her and giving her a belay lesson while her parents climbed together she proceeded to give me a test. I asked what it was for and she replied to see if I could stay and play with them. Passed with flying colors, was allowed to stay and climb and invited to dinner. I had not met her or her parents before, friends of a friend.

Possibly in 10 years or so she will be climbing 12's at the creek and inviting me to belay and enjoy a top rope.

90% of life is showing up. So with that I'll be in Potrero again this winter. No new routes this year unless you bring the bolts and haul the gear to the base. Otherwise I'll be available to climb and just enjoy the climbing this year.

Mental activity I hear is good for the brain. So I graduated high school in 69, you do the math. Moab is getting harder and harder for me to climb consistently at a 5.10 level. Going home to the Gunks is always an option to climb high quality climbs at any level. Wish the weather was as good there as it is here.


oldguy53


Oct 25, 2012, 4:02 PM
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Re: [budman] older climbers [In reply to]
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instead of the math i'll just say i'm a 69 'er too. Roosevelt High . Moab and Gunks you got it made. bobo


dan2see


Oct 25, 2012, 8:17 PM
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budman wrote:
...
90% of life is showing up
...

Yeah.

Sometimes I think the young guys are a bunch of egoistic twerps and I really don't want to spend half the day in the car with them. Anyway I hate mornings. And rain.

But then I bite my tongue and just go along. And of course those guys are actually a lot of fun to share the day's adventures with. I always end up having fun.

That is a lesson I've had to learn: Just show up, and the fun takes care of itself.


hugepedro


Oct 25, 2012, 8:45 PM
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Daaaaang! I thought I was old, but in this thread I'm a punk of 45! Hahaha, suckit, geezers!

30 years in the game. My rock climbing probably peaked 10 years ago, but I still have my eye on my biggest big mountain prize. Unfortunately, my torn ACL and MCL are going to delay that a bit. Wait a minute, does that mean I'm getting old?

I had no idea some of you guys were this old though. I might have to change my sig.


havard


Oct 25, 2012, 10:14 PM
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Re: [Syd] older climbers [In reply to]
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Syd wrote:
climbingaggie03 wrote:
I'm 31 and I can still climb 5.9, I know it won't last forever, but maybe for another couple of years I'll be able to enjoy it.

Are you kidding ? "Still climb 5.9" ? I'm still improving at 64. I thought I'd plateaued until I bought a hangboard a couple of years back. I'm close to doing a 5.12a clean and my goal is a 5.12c. I think I'd read about a guy 59 doing 5.13d.

Syd, you have no idea how this is inspiering me! I was well into my 5.11 trad climbs when I was shut down due to a bad shoulder two years ago. Iīm finally recovering enough to start climbing again, and you still improving tells me Iīve lost nothing! Thanks, man!

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