Tim Hinck's thoughts on music and life- There is a lady living across the street from me. She is dying of cancer. I have never seen anyone so full of life and energy. She loves to work outside in the flowers and grass of her yard. I can see her savoring every sunny day... the way she stands up from planting a flower bulb with such satisfaction on her face and claps the dirt from her gloves with resolution. I want to be like that lady.

Location: Schalkwijk, Utrecht, Netherlands

Sunday, May 07, 2006

Lynn Hill's Nose

(phil wiygul bouldering in joe's valley, utah 2004)

well, living here in the Netherlands can sometimes feel like living on another planet. it's so strange to hear the about events that should have made up the activities of your daily life, as if it were old news and statistics. the people i love, the the communities and organizations i put energy into... they all are moving ahead and breaking new ground without me. as if to drive home this point, today i found out that one of the most important achievements in the history of climbing was accomplished almost 7 months ago without my knowing: the 2nd ascent of "the Nose".

a little history:
the climbing route up the most prominent ridge of the most famous granite monolith in Yosemite National Park (and maybe the world)... THE NOSE route on El Capitan. for decades is has stood as a landmark achievement of modern mountaineering and a proving-grounds for the world's newest strong climbers. but this route took a leap of mythological proportions when in 1993 Lynn Hill became the first person to climb this route (about 3,000 feet tall) completely free from artifical aid. this means that lynn used gear and ropes only as a safety backup, and never to pull herself up (as all other climbers do). this means that in theory lynn is the only person who has really climbed this route... an accomplishment that was not equalled by even the strongest of male climbers.

the second ascent went last October, not to some hot-shot punk, but to the quiet, dedicated husband and wife team: Tommy Caldwell and Beth Rodden. the two climbed the route together, placing their gear on lead (and only for protection). a few days later, Tommy came back (with Beth only belaying this time) to climb the route in under 12 hours, leading every pitch. This astonishing accomplishment means that he climbed literally 30 full-length climbs stacked on top of each other (only resting to belay Beth up to him.

here's a link to a Lynn Hill website, where you can read more about this historic route and what it takes to climb it:

Lynn Hill talks about the Nose Route


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