Posted on: March 1, 2008
Most of the time when readers send us submissions, their byline appears prominently in the email. Once in a while they forget, and we have to badger them for details. But this photo, a self-portrait of a soloist on Steve's Arete (5.11a) on Mount Lemmon, near Tucson, Arizona, came with the caveat that if we published it, we were not to use his name anywhere in print. "Some people do not understand free soloing," went the disclaimer, "and I happen to love some of them dearly. [It's] the eternal, internal conflict of the soloist." The semi-anonymous fellow took the image to celebrate his thirtieth year of climbing, at age forty-five. "I have been around long enough to remember when Separate Reality was 5.12," he wrote, "and two or three feet longer than it is now." Thanks, friend, for thinking of us with this photo—and here's to seeing you on the rock for the next thirty years.