Weekly Feature Archives

Obituary: Layton Kor (1938-2013)

Posted April 26, 2013

The name says it all. Everyone who is a climber has heard his name. Every climber has seen his name plastered all over the guidebooks and on route names like Kor's Flake, Kor's Door, Kor's Korner and the Kor-Ingalls Route. Layton Kor was ubiquitous in the 1960s. The man was everywhere, stirring up an impatient storm on the rocks wherever he landed.

In Gold Blood

Posted April 8, 2013

One year ago I sat idly and watched as my friends enjoyed a beautiful, warm winter day of cragging at the New River Gorge in West Virginia.... I reminisced of moments from weeks prior: the sound of our machete as it cut through thick vines; the unmistakable metallic squawk of the Bearded Bellbird; waterfalls; flowers; heaven on earth; black flies; dazzling views; big walls; dirt in my eyes; ant bites; the sound of a breaking bone...

50 Years on Everest

Posted February 14, 2013

Each year, the Everest situation comes under greater scrutiny, with new stories of crowds and deaths and with new allegations of climbers lacking compassion for each other.... Each person's choice of style is his or her own, a decision that has to do with highly personal variables. Regardless of how we feel about the use of various aids, the people who stand atop these peaks still take each step themselves.

Future First Ascents: The Faces of the Mugs Stump Award

Posted January 28, 2013

We already introduced their objectives. Now meet the nine teams chasing those summits with all of Mug Stump's boldness and commitment to light and clean alpinism.

Alpinist 41: The Cover (Back)story

Posted January 28, 2013

We were on the North Face of the Eiger. Clint Eastwood was dangling free over an ugly overhang with his rope attached to the end of a ladder that was rigged like a diving board. It protruded about 20 feet over the edge of a rock ledge....

Mugs Stump-Funded Expeditions: 2012 In Review

Posted January 9, 2013

Find out what happened to each of the teams funded by our 2012 Mugs Stump Award.

2012 Bozeman Ice Festival Livestream

Posted December 6, 2012

You don't have to be in Bozeman to see the ice tower competition and talks by Hayden and Michael Kennedy, Doug Chabot and others at the Ice Fest! Find the live footage here.

Dirtbaggery, Vol. 3: Surviving Thanksgiving Small Talk

Posted November 16, 2012

When we meet people for the first time, we ask their name, and we ask them their job. And although I know climbers who've adopted unorthodox monikers such as Trout Man, Chongo, Coach or Alf, they have no trouble answering their names. The job category, that one's often tougher. If you're like me, you put on a sheepish grin and give a halfway-there explanation, and struggle until failure to explain what you're doing with yourself and why.

Bozeman Ice Fest Writing Contest

Posted November 2, 2012

Does the sound of crunching leaves underfoot and a biting frost on your morning run have you itchin' to break out the pointy hardware and sniff out some vertical ice? Nostalgic for your first time swinging a tool? Eager to enjoy some meditation time on your front points? Tell us about it.

Dirtbaggery, Vol. 2: Saving Time, Wasting Time and Explaining Climbing on the Internet

Posted November 1, 2012

As a beginning climber, I would read Internet forums and climbing blogs for hours. I justified these pupil-glazing sessions as "research" into a world I knew nothing about....In the interest of helping others avoid such hours fraught with peril, I'm going to attempt to answer nearly every Internet climbing conundrum in the span of a single Q and A session.