Thoughts about WA vs. CO climbing communities

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Re: Thoughts about WA vs. CO climbing communities

Postby seano732 » Wed Nov 06, 2013 8:15 pm

Great topic Matt.... Another huge difference I noted, alluded to above, is ACCESS. On my first trip to the Cascades, I was freaking out just GETTING to what we wanted to climb, never mind the actual route we had chosen. The term " bushwacking" is on a whole nother level (11?) up there.... Then there's crevasses, moats, bergschrunds, and all other types of "adventure" that you don't have in Colorado... That being said, I've climbed with a lot of "adventurous" Colorado mountaineers.... At the time I just called em crazy motherfu@$ers!!! Peace!
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Re: Thoughts about WA vs. CO climbing communities

Postby Matt Lemke » Wed Nov 06, 2013 8:19 pm

Winter8000m wrote:It depends on who you know in the climbing community. If you are comparing to then I sort of feel like you are comparing a hiking community to about (Mainly CO based) to I feel there isn't much difference from what I've seen. A lot of CO climbers go for it more then WA climbers but then again a lot of WA climbers go for it more then CO climbers? Feel like the comparison is off based.

Does it even matter though?

Maybe a good comparison is comparing Colorado to Slovenia, if you know what I mean.

That's a very good point Noah. I was mainly comparing people I know directly and their respective friends along with what people are generally looking to climb when they are looking for partners on sites like MountainProject, Cascadeclimbers, 14ers and NWHikers. A small part of my thinking was based on the fact that I have trouble finding people interested in some of the lesser known adventure routes in the Colorado alpine. I know they are out I know you and Brian climb many things I would love to climb but I can't seem find many people interested in these kinds of climbs. Many partner posts I find for Colorado on MP are looking for people to hit the classic crags like Lumpy or Eldorado etc.
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Re: Thoughts about WA vs. CO climbing communities

Postby d_baker » Wed Nov 06, 2013 8:23 pm

rijaca wrote:
d_baker wrote:
Winter8000m wrote:Does it even matter though?

No. I think we're all in it for the fun and adventure. Whether it's hiking or climbing, and how we do it is our own doing and choosing. So long as we have a good day, or days, just do it.

Dammit NO! I'm in it for the bragging rights! :mrgreen:

I just looked at your peak have some work to do before you can brag. ;)
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Re: Thoughts about WA vs. CO climbing communities

Postby shredthegnar10 » Wed Nov 06, 2013 8:28 pm

I climb because it's fun, and for the adventure. Adventures are fun. I usually bring a topo map and maybe a photocopy of a brief, general route description (e.g. "Hike up X trail to the junction with Y and Z. Take the trail for Z. Traverse the talus slope, go to the saddle, and climb the ridge to the summit.") Climbing in the Cascades was definitely a call to "step up my game," so to speak.
The climbing community in Colorado is very visible, and with websites like this one, it's really easy for people of any experience level to find suitable partners for stuff they want to do. It's a great place for someone who has absolutely no experience and doesn't know where to start to get into climbing and progress to the level where they can do harder, more serious, more committing climbs.
Meeting climbing partners in the PNW required a little more planning, but I didn't usually run into any problems.
Both places have their own pros and cons, so to speak.
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Re: Thoughts about WA vs. CO climbing communities

Postby highpilgrim » Wed Nov 06, 2013 8:47 pm

rijaca wrote:Dammit NO! I'm in it for the bragging rights!

Cow dude! You're such a SEE ME BOY. Pretty soon, you'll be hanging out in summit hot tubs and hanging with the coolios. Maybe even the new coolios, and not even the old coolios.

Where has this place gotten to?
Last edited by highpilgrim on Wed Nov 06, 2013 8:50 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Thoughts about WA vs. CO climbing communities

Postby sstratta » Wed Nov 06, 2013 8:50 pm

Interesting topic to think about! What I noticed during the time I spent out there is the WA "climbing crowd" was much more separate than the "hiking crowd", whereas in CO the two seem to be more mixed. Also, as someone else already mentioned, winter climbing in CO is much more prevalent than in WA (though still less popular than in the summer, for obvious reasons). The difference here is the weather and TH CO it's much easier to climb throughout the winter, whether that be cragging or peaks, whereas in WA it's just so hard to get up to the bigger peaks in winter that a lot of people just switch to full-time ski mode. I'm not so sure about the adventure vs. fun thing...I've met adventurous climbers and laidback climbers in both WA and CO, and both states also seem to have their fair share of reckless climbers and safe/conservative climbers. I also notice similarities with Denver and Seattle...while both cities have relatively easy access to climbing and the outdoors, it still baffles me how many people in both of these places never even touch foot in the mountains. I guess the bottom line is you can have adventures in both places, as well as fun (had to end it with a cheesy line)!

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Re: Thoughts about WA vs. CO climbing communities

Postby TravelingMatt » Wed Nov 06, 2013 8:56 pm

Colorado has to be the world's best place for the "drive to trailhead the night before, sleep in car, climb something, get back to car in same day, drive into town for food/provisions, drive to next trailhead, repeat" method. Montana works pretty well for this as it turns out. Washington IMO less so.

I've noticed there's a lot more moralizing about how one summits a mountain in the Northwest, even on established trails. I did the Enchantments by dayhiking up and back over Colchuk Pass rather than dealing with the permit system. Apparently this is some sort of taboo -- not in a legal sense, but the "preferred" way to do it is the long way from the other direction.

There's a far greater acceptance of fees in the PNW. A hardcore climber can pay several different annual fees out there, for the Northwest Forest Pass in addition to the separate entrance fees for each national park and the climbing fees for the volcanoes that have them.

They have some of the same problems with access/private property that we do. Maybe a little worse here.

You're right, there's no list mentality in the PNW. The only place besides Colorado where people care a lot about lists is the Northeast. Much less focus on elevation in the NW than most other places. Here a 13er generally doesn't have as much "status" as a 14er does, a 12er not as much as a 13er and so on. You don't get that mentality so much in the Cascades.

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Re: Thoughts about WA vs. CO climbing communities

Postby pbakwin » Wed Nov 06, 2013 10:00 pm

Wait, I thought
Adventure = Fun

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Re: Thoughts about WA vs. CO climbing communities

Postby 12ersRule » Thu Nov 07, 2013 3:00 am

Washington- climb in any whether, glacier shredding, flannel wearing, grunge listening MACHINES. :shock:

Colorado- fair whethered, drive as close to the summit as possible, complain when Roach is off by 0.1 miles, string cheese eating/listening, guide loving loosers.

Washington: Well, I stand up next to a mountain, And I chop it down with the edge of my hand!

Colorado: The shadow from the starlight is softer than a lullabye. Rocky mountain high

Nuff said!

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Re: Thoughts about WA vs. CO climbing communities

Postby tlongpine » Thu Nov 07, 2013 5:03 am

pbakwin wrote:Wait, I thought
Adventure = Fun

I am unable to walk away from the mountain without climbing it. An unclimbed mountain tugs at my consciousness with the eternal weight of time itself. Until I've pressed my face into it's alpine winds, hugged it's ancient granite walls, and put it's weathered summit beneath my heal I'm unable to resist it's attraction.Knowing nature gives the mountain more time than she gives us adds urgency to the obsession. As has been said before; the mountain doesn't care.

It can wait forever. I cannot.

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Re: Thoughts about WA vs. CO climbing communities

Postby Brian C » Thu Nov 07, 2013 6:18 am

I'd bet if you cut a small enough piece of the Colorado climbing "pie" the attitudes/skills/drive would be the same. Like mentioned above, there are simply FAR less climbers at all in the NW. That said I climbed with plenty of folks up there who for them going sport climbing at Smith is the most they ever want to do. I'm with Noah on this, doesn't matter. Go climb what you want to climb and let others do the same. I could care less about a lot of things people drive to do and tend to obsess over things that nobody else cares about at all. Does that make my goals superior or inferior as compared to theirs? Seems doubtful.
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Re: Thoughts about WA vs. CO climbing communities

Postby peter303 » Thu Nov 07, 2013 7:19 am

There are mountains behind all those rain clouds? Oh my!


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