Climbing Partner Musings

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Flyingfish
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Re: Climbing Partner Musings

Post by Flyingfish » Thu Feb 25, 2021 11:18 am

bergsteigen wrote:
Wed Feb 24, 2021 1:19 pm
I do have a problem with tall fast people leaving me in the dust.
Sorry bout that one.

I guess when looking for a partner it is mostly just someone who I can talk with and get along with since for me having a distraction can help get through the miles and make a trip more fun. Unfortunately most hikers and backcountry people are introverts not extroverts. Not a ton of big talkers that I have encountered on peaks.
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Re: Climbing Partner Musings

Post by oldmanforest » Thu Feb 25, 2021 11:23 am

Flyingfish wrote:
Thu Feb 25, 2021 11:18 am
bergsteigen wrote:
Wed Feb 24, 2021 1:19 pm
I do have a problem with tall fast people leaving me in the dust.
Sorry bout that one.

I guess when looking for a partner it is mostly just someone who I can talk with and get along with since for me having a distraction can help get through the miles and make a trip more fun. Unfortunately most hikers and backcountry people are introverts not extroverts. Not a ton of big talkers that I have encountered on peaks.
Quiet people are great because they're not gonna talk about how you only actually hiked to the base of the mountains and then checked all the ones within view off your peak lists.
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Re: Climbing Partner Musings

Post by HikerGuy » Thu Feb 25, 2021 11:25 am

FireOnTheMountain wrote:
Thu Feb 25, 2021 11:09 am
^Dude, I'm very happy to read this :)

I even clicked on your page and read that you were a Boulderite which made me even sadder, but I'm pleased to learn that you do actually care. Good on you, and wish there were more like you!!

Unfortunately however, I will forever err on the side of caution and assume everyone cares not about the environment simply because that's what I see all around me, day in and day out. You keep doin you man.
No worries! I guess it's good to call stuff out, because if we don't, nothing will change. My summertime hiking is my yearly "splurge" that brings me great joy and sustenance for the rest of the year. We do try to be mindful elsewhere and I pretty much hibernate in winter, no I-70 ski trips every weekend. I love living in Boulder, but it is full of hypocrites unfortunately. That cracked concrete driveway that does not look perfect, most people would replace it. Well, we are going to have the ugly driveway for quite sometime. I'm not sure people realize how much energy goes into concrete. Our house, 2100 sq ft, plenty big enough, but folks are still chasing, building bigger homes. New cars every 3 to 5 years? Um, no thank you. We try and I am sure we could do more, but no way I am getting rid of my dogs, haha! No kids, though!
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Re: Climbing Partner Musings

Post by hellmanm » Thu Feb 25, 2021 11:41 am

I like a climbing partner that I don’t have to worry about. If they’re a mile ahead or a mile behind, I’ll worry. If they’re unprepared, I’ll worry. If I can’t make conversation with them, I’ll worry about communication on the important stuff. The best climbing partners are friendly, prepared, and level-headed. Pace/skill isn’t that important as long as they’re honest and we adjust our planning, our expectations, or our wakeup times accordingly.

I prefer to hike within earshot of my partners. Sometimes I’m really chatty, and sometimes I’m quiet. I worry about everything, though (which is part of why I climb — to overcome that anxiety). That worrying keeps me safe, but I don’t want to have any other unexpected worries added on by a partner. Newbies are fine, bc I know what to worry about going in and can adjust based on their needs. The mountain has enough surprises, though; I want partners who can help me adapt to the mountain’s challenges, instead of partners who ARE the challenges.
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Re: Climbing Partner Musings

Post by highpilgrim » Thu Feb 25, 2021 11:55 am

oldmanforest wrote:
Thu Feb 25, 2021 11:23 am
Quiet people are great because they're not gonna talk about how you only actually hiked to the base of the mountains and then checked all the ones within view off your peak lists.
:lol:
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Re: Climbing Partner Musings

Post by mtn_hound » Thu Feb 25, 2021 12:18 pm

CoHi591 wrote:
Thu Feb 25, 2021 8:20 am
This is a stress point for me as well. I really like climbing peaks a s backpacking solo on my own terms, which is why I haven't really enjoyed the small handful of times I've gone with internet people. I'm also extremely introverted and quiet and I don't want to make someone else feel uncomfortable if we aren't chatting. Sharing a 3-4 hour car ride each way with a stranger is a nightmare.

As an aside I've always joked about starting my own "Introverts mountain guiding business". Need company/a guide on the peaks for safety and a second set of eyes on the route, but want general solitude and absolutely no small talk otherwise? I'm you're guy!

Kidding of course. I'm not good enough to guide.
I'm pretty extroverted, I can and often do talk all day to anyone in my general vicinity about nothing in particular. But, I also hike solo a lot and truly don't mind hiking with a partner and having minimal conversation. We do need to be able to discuss important points relative to the hike (routefinding, safety issues, etc.). Usually I warn people up front that I can be rather loquacious and make sure they know I won't take offense if they tell me to stfu.
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Re: Climbing Partner Musings

Post by bergsteigen » Thu Feb 25, 2021 12:36 pm

GeezerClimber wrote:
Thu Feb 25, 2021 11:07 am
Sometimes I think finding a good partner is more difficult than finding a spouse!
I’d say the opposite :roll: I have had lots of good partners over the years.
Flyingfish wrote:
Thu Feb 25, 2021 11:18 am
bergsteigen wrote:
Wed Feb 24, 2021 1:19 pm
I do have a problem with tall fast people leaving me in the dust.
Sorry bout that one.
I was firmly on the struggle bus that day! Not only did my leg hurt like hell (something Tiger Woods, and others with rods, will learn all about in the next few years), I was also having another medical issue that didn’t get diagnosed till 8 months later (since taken care of). You can make it up on future hikes.
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Re: Climbing Partner Musings

Post by Trotter » Thu Feb 25, 2021 3:46 pm

oldmanforest wrote:
Thu Feb 25, 2021 11:23 am
Flyingfish wrote:
Thu Feb 25, 2021 11:18 am
bergsteigen wrote:
Wed Feb 24, 2021 1:19 pm
I do have a problem with tall fast people leaving me in the dust.
Sorry bout that one.

I guess when looking for a partner it is mostly just someone who I can talk with and get along with since for me having a distraction can help get through the miles and make a trip more fun. Unfortunately most hikers and backcountry people are introverts not extroverts. Not a ton of big talkers that I have encountered on peaks.
Quiet people are great because they're not gonna talk about how you only actually hiked to the base of the mountains and then checked all the ones within view off your peak lists.

Oh snap!
After climbing a great hill, one only finds that there are many more hills to climb. -Nelson Mandela
Whenever I climb I am followed by a dog called Ego. -Nietzsche
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Re: Climbing Partner Musings

Post by d_baker » Thu Feb 25, 2021 5:04 pm

It's interesting to hear/read about over-talkative partners. For those that had the chance to hike with Steve Gladbach probably realized pretty quickly how much he could talk! He wasn't one of those people that talked so much that you couldn't help but hope his story would end soon though. His stories were fun to listen to. HE could talk non-stop going uphill, meanwhile if you're behind you're huffing and puffing and you didn't necessarily need to worry about trying to maintain the pace and carry on the conversation, or respond, because he was/could be non-stop!

As for me, most of my hiking partners over the years I met beforehand in person and developed a friendship before going out hiking high peaks. Partners I've met from here on this site it's been different. I/we got to know one another from posts made to the forum, or through reading trip reports. There are plenty of people on here that I've always thought I would like to meet and hike with, and for some I have.
Then there are some that I know from reading their posts that I wouldn't want to meet them or hike with them. That very likely could work both ways, and that's ok!

A good partner is someone that still wants to hike with me again at the end of the hike.
There's been a few one and done hikes, and there's been some that fell to the wayside after several hikes together -- for whatever reason.
I have mainstays though, and those are the ones I tend to go back to time after time.
I'm not a "peakbagger" nor do I get summit fever. I've turned back early on hikes, and later in hikes for whatever reason. I've had partners want to do the same.
It's all good, but I realize that can be disappointing for either of us, but if we end the hike and talk about next time, cool.

Being safe and cognizant of the hazards is a plus.
Being fun to talk with and at least laugh a little is a bigger plus.
Someone that stresses out easily on tougher terrain can be taxing sometimes, but fortunately I have a decent amount of patience (but there's been times early on that I was the one that stressed out).
Common interests makes conversation flowing, as does common goals in the mountains because let's face it we're hiking with people that have those common mountain goals/lists.

Interesting topic, fun to read the different responses. Thanks Snow Dog!
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Re: Climbing Partner Musings

Post by Snow_Dog_frassati » Thu Feb 25, 2021 6:52 pm

Flyingfish wrote:
Thu Feb 25, 2021 11:18 am
bergsteigen wrote:
Wed Feb 24, 2021 1:19 pm
I do have a problem with tall fast people leaving me in the dust.
Sorry bout that one.

I guess when looking for a partner it is mostly just someone who I can talk with and get along with since for me having a distraction can help get through the miles and make a trip more fun. Unfortunately most hikers and backcountry people are introverts not extroverts. Not a ton of big talkers that I have encountered on peaks.
Ahahahhaah. Count me as another tall, fast introvert. Although with the right partner I've talked all the way through certain hikes before where I'm sure I was annoying then a little.
"A good decision yesterday doesn't absolve me from a bad decision today"
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Re: Climbing Partner Musings

Post by HikesInGeologicTime » Thu Feb 25, 2021 7:08 pm

CoHi591 wrote:
Thu Feb 25, 2021 8:20 am
This is a stress point for me as well. I really like climbing peaks a s backpacking solo on my own terms, which is why I haven't really enjoyed the small handful of times I've gone with internet people. I'm also extremely introverted and quiet and I don't want to make someone else feel uncomfortable if we aren't chatting. Sharing a 3-4 hour car ride each way with a stranger is a nightmare.

As an aside I've always joked about starting my own "Introverts mountain guiding business". Need company/a guide on the peaks for safety and a second set of eyes on the route, but want general solitude and absolutely no small talk otherwise? I'm you're guy!

Kidding of course. I'm not good enough to guide.
I remember a "Slow Hikers Unite!" thread from a while back. Maybe we need an "Introverted Hikers Unite!" as well as a "Short Hikers Unite!" thread. Anybody else who falls into all three categories, feel free to PM me! :)

But then again, I also suspect evaluating partners is a bit like how my non-asexual/aromantic friends describe evaluating romantic partners: the people you mesh with the best IRL aren't necessarily the ones you'd go looking for online. The partner I'd say I've climbed with the most pretty much doesn't stop talking until he falls asleep (and sometimes not even then), but he's got a consistently interesting perspective that keeps me from thinking about how much my legs hurt/my lungs are burning/I wish I were fast asleep in bed. Another regular partner has 7" on me, all of them seemingly in his legs, but he's considerate about finding routes on scrambles that won't put a shorter-legged climber at too much of a disadvantage. He's also a genuinely good-hearted, generous sort, so I have no idea why he keeps hanging around me. :lol: I've also hiked with partners who looked good on paper, so to speak, but while they were perfectly fine people, I guess the chemistry just wasn't there.

That said, I do have actual, solid, quantifiable standards, mainly going back to Tornadoman's comment about medical conditions: I'm a Type I diabetic. When I say I need to stop to tend to my low blood sugar, I don't mean I'll be getting a little hangrier if we keep going. I mean I can either eat some Skittles NOW, or whoever I'm hiking with is gonna have to call Flight for Life.
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Re: Climbing Partner Musings

Post by dr_j » Thu Feb 25, 2021 10:19 pm

Not intentionally, it’s been largely a solo journey for me. I counted 37 summits where I started out on my own, and with a few exceptions, finished them on my own as well. For a few of them, usually the tougher peaks, I’d encounter a group and ask to follow on sketchier sections. But it was mostly because I can’t seem to get people to join me on the rather tiring drives.

Only recently have I been going with semi-regular partners. Some I’ve met randomly, the rest have been ski / snowboard partners. That’s actually been a good way to see how we get along, from picking a line, to getting an idea about how willing they are to hike to the goods, to seeing how punctual they are about getting started in the mornings.

I’m the old one of the bunch by more than a decade, in some cases two, it keeps me in shape, and I’m grateful for their company. I guess it means that I’m not moving too slowly either.

Now if this only translated to finding partners beyond hiking and skiing. I will admit that Grindr is terrible, so where are the rad dudes at? :-D
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