Colorado Mountain Club

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rayers1001
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Colorado Mountain Club

Post by rayers1001 » Thu Dec 22, 2016 3:49 pm

Hey folks,

I'm relatively new to Colorado and I've been considering buying a membership to CMC. What are your opinions of the membership benefits? Worth it? Thanks in advance for your feedback and experience.
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BillMiddlebrook
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Re: Colorado Mountain Club

Post by BillMiddlebrook » Thu Dec 22, 2016 3:54 pm

“Some things never change, no, don't ever change
And I'm feeling the cold
Thinking that we're getting older and wiser
When we're just getting old”
- David Gilmour
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justiner
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Re: Colorado Mountain Club

Post by justiner » Thu Dec 22, 2016 4:15 pm

They gave me a certificate for completing the 14ers, so that's cool ;)
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scramble
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Re: Colorado Mountain Club

Post by scramble » Thu Dec 22, 2016 4:32 pm

The advanced mountaineering school is pretty fun (gives you something to do on the weekends), and is a good place to make new friends and meet partners. I would say that you need to supplement the classes with a lot of individual practice and research, but I found it to be a great start, and my old snow cave sleepover buddy is still my favorite person to go on mountaineering trips with today! A lot of wonderful experiences were the result of taking that class. (I took the Boulder one cuz that's where I live... Val was great!!)
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rayers1001
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Re: Colorado Mountain Club

Post by rayers1001 » Thu Dec 22, 2016 6:29 pm

Thanks for the links Bill. I got the info I needed.
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Re: Colorado Mountain Club

Post by peter303 » Thu Dec 22, 2016 7:26 pm

Thats where I met Gerry Roach. He is 14er Diety along with Bill. I dont know how active Roach is with CMC these days. I didnt do much with CMC because I am a more spontaneous hiker.
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Re: Colorado Mountain Club

Post by Scott P » Fri Dec 23, 2016 6:32 am

It is certainy worth it if you live in a community with active members. When I lived in the Grand Junction area there were a lot of active members and I led and went on a lot of trips. When I moved to Craig I let my membership expire since there were no active members in the area.
I'm slow and fat. Unfortunately, those are my good qualities.
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I Man
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Re: Colorado Mountain Club

Post by I Man » Fri Dec 23, 2016 8:42 am

Highly recommend the CMC, especially Boulder. For AMS, for cool people and for pro deals!!! Sportiva alone easily pays my yearly membership, saved $400 on my Olympus Mons!
Last edited by I Man on Mon Dec 26, 2016 6:11 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Colorado Mountain Club

Post by Shaolin » Fri Dec 23, 2016 10:24 am

Scott P wrote:It is certainy worth it if you live in a community with active members. When I lived in the Grand Junction area there were a lot of active members and I led and went on a lot of trips. When I moved to Craig I let my membership expire since there were no active members in the area.
The last time I checked with the CMC a few months ago, they have no active chapter in GJ anymore.
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globreal
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Re: Colorado Mountain Club

Post by globreal » Fri Dec 23, 2016 11:35 am

rayers1001 wrote:Hey folks,

I'm relatively new to Colorado and I've been considering buying a membership to CMC. What are your opinions of the membership benefits? Worth it? Thanks in advance for your feedback and experience.
I thought I would chime in here. The reason being, the threads that Bill posted are all pretty old conversations....the latest being a 2013 thread and going back to 2008. Some things have changed.

First, my reason for joining. I had already climbed all of the 14ers...ranked and unranked. And I had climbed the Centennials along with many other 13ers. And I have done a fair amount of winter climbing and even now do rock climbing. So some would ask, with that much experience, why join the CMC? Well, I am now climbing the state highpoints, and so I wanted to get glacier travel &crevasse rescue experience for Rainier and Denali. So, I wanted to take the CMC HAMS (High Altitude Mountaineering School) class. It was excellent and I highly recommend HAMS.

So, for me the CMC is totally worth getting involved with because of their classes alone. They are very affordable and way less than a guide service. I would rather learn the skills and knowledge, than to check my brain at the trailhead and to rely on a guide to think for me. (Go to CMC.org to see all the different types of classes. There are tons of them.)

The club is no longer an 'old fart" club. I believe there are over 6,000 members across the state and the last couple of years, most of the growth was the under 30 age group. I believe this is due primarily to the new membership rates. Here is the current annual cost to join:
Individual $70 yearly ($125 2-year)
Family $115 yearly ($215 2-year)
Under 30 $30 yearly

There has been a lot of comments about the ratings of climbs and climbers. That has been relaxed somewhat from what I can tell. At least down here in the Pikes Peak Group. I wouldn't let your fear of a "rating system" be a deterrent from joining the club or trying to go on a trip. Usually you can just talk to the trip leader and if you are in reasonable shape, you should be good to go on most trips. There are some exceptions on more dangerous climbs where skills are required.

And lastly, one of the best things about the CMC is making new friends. I climb a lot with the people I've met in the club primarily because they are doing some of the same type of climbs I am doing. It seems to me like a lot of the people on this .com site join to climb the 14ers. Once they have completed "the list", many of those people then fade away. While I've got loads of 14er.com friends, it seems like I've stayed in closer touch with many of my CMC climbing friends.

My suggestion to anyone considering the CMC....try it for a year. Take a class or two...I guarantee you'll learn something. And then see if you want to renew your membership the next year. All you've got to loose is a few bucks, but you'll gain knowledge and friends and that's will be worth what you spent for a one year membership.

Climb on....and Onwards!
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Re: Colorado Mountain Club

Post by Monster5 » Fri Dec 23, 2016 1:18 pm

I've been involved with the CMC for several years off and on as both a HAMS student and instructor. While I've never joined a CMC hike, I do get out regularly with the HAMS Co-directors and senior instructors. Also, I've never taken the Wilderness trekking or basic mountaineering schools. BMS is supposed to be one of the best for getting into semi-technical mountaineering.

CMC pros:
-Relatively affordable instruction. Guides or private outings are significantly more expensive.
-New hiking partners and friends with various skill levels and backgrounds. Many of my HAMS students climb together every weekend independent of the CMC and are close friends.
-Leadership, direction, and goal-sharing available. Many of the goals and objectives are straight-forward and traditional. 14ers to Rainier to Orizaba to Denali type thing, but others are in to obscurities. There are both peak bagger and mountaineer mindsets (and some swing both ways).
-They teach safe and conventional techniques. Adaptable around the world and generally straight out of a book. Yes, there are shortcuts in technique, but they leave many of those to the individual based on climbing style and experience.

CMC cons or limitations:
-Instructors and leaders are volunteers, not professionals. Sometimes they aren't the most qualified, experienced, youthful, or in-shape. Yeah, unfortunately, the in-shape guys don't get that way by teaching twice a week. The ones who meet all of the criteria above tend to be guides at $200 for a half day outing. Some might be by the book with little focus on innovation or extenuating circumstances.
-Goes at a group pace. This can be frustrating if you understand mechanical systems and have good experience/judgment.
-Slow to adopt new techniques. Eh. They teach safe and conventional.
-Instructors and leaders are of varying paces, experiences, and climbing backgrounds. But they are all fairly Type A. They frequently disagree with each other but seem to come to a good consensus for instruction. Students can often choose which instructors they have most in common with.
-The requirements can be stringent and it is up to various instructors to waive and evaluate. In my opinion, they've been burned more often than not waiving requirements. The ability to walk or scramble uphill via standard route 14ers and 13ers really has no effect on the ability to rig a Z-haul or function on a rope team.
-They can't teach experience. They provide the tools to safely gain experience.
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Re: Colorado Mountain Club

Post by TallGrass » Fri Dec 23, 2016 1:40 pm

rayers1001 wrote:I'm relatively new to Colorado and I've been considering buying a membership to CMC. What are your opinions of the membership benefits? Worth it?
What are you looking to do, goals? What do you want to learn? What ways of learning (book, class, hands on, solo, one-on-one, group, comes naturally, takes some practice, weeks of patience, ...) have suited you best? What things attract you and which would you sacrifice for others if you had to?
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