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ith each print edition of Alpinist, we aim to create a work of art, paying attention to every detail—from our extended photo captions to our carefully selected images and well-crafted stories. Inside our pages, we strive to offer our readers an experience like that of exploratory climbing, a realm of words and images where they can wander, discover surprising new viewpoints, and encounter moments of excitement, humor, awe and beauty.

By publishing the work of climbers from a wide range of ages, technical abilities, nations and cultures—united by their passion for adventure and wild places—we hope to reflect and enhance the sense of community within the climbing life. Over time, back issues have become collectors’ items, serving as historical references and ongoing inspirations. Like our readers, we believe that great writing and art about climbing demand the same boldness, commitment and vision as the pursuit itself. JOIN US.

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photos from our members

tales from our members


a Q+A with Ashley Saupe


the Ultimate Shadow Player by By Jim McCarthy


from the Archives


by Jeff Shapiro



a Glacial Wander by Emma Longcope


by John Long

38 FELLOWSHIP AROUND THE WORLD One Climb at a Time by Chris Weidner


BETA everything you need to know

Jenn Flemming takes a breather on the Nose, Triple Direct. AAC member Nick Martino

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WELCOME, Our climbing community is changing. We’re no longer a small band of counterculture dirtbags hiding from park rangers in Camp 4. Today we’re everywhere, in plain view. We’re in D.C. fighting for our public lands. We’re scientists on mountains, collecting data to better understand the health and sustainability of mountain environments. We’re the park rangers and search and rescue teams keeping others safe on our days off from climbing. We’re mentors in climbing gyms and at crags, promoting inclusivity and welcoming new climbers into our community. In March of 2017, the AAC reached a new milestone: 18,000 members. We are young and old, experienced and novice, from every geography, culture, and background—we’re an organization for everyone who loves climbing. As our Club becomes more diverse, our priorities have shifted. Nationally we’re investing in climber education and advocating for and stewarding the places we love to climb. Locally we’re supporting an expanding network of volunteer-run chapters that bring together passionate climbers through meaningful local events and grassroots initiatives. This year’s Guidebook focuses on you, the remarkable people who care for our climbing community. You’ll find a story from stonemaster John Long, who has dedicated much of his life to educating climbers. You’ll read letters from our members who are fighting to protect Bears Ears National Monument. And you’ll hear from a father and daughter, mother and son, wife and husband, about the powerful draw of the rope—the heart of our climbing partnerships. A strong Club is a force to be reckoned with. It keeps our climbing areas healthy. It provides all climbers with opportunities for education. Your support as a member brings us together. Together we write the story of climbing. —THE AAC P.S. When you’re done reading, flip to the back of the book to find information on how to maximize your member benefits. From rescue services, gear discounts, yearly publications, and local meet-ups—it’s all in here.

a Forest Woodward tempts his camera's fate with a

summit selfie with Jenny Abegg, Graham Zimmerman, Alix Morris on the summit of the Direct East Buttress of Hall Peak, (5.9+, 2,000') Leaning Towers, BC. A AC member Forest Woodward

4 | American Alpine Club


Guidebook to Membership | 5




Production Director: Whitney Bradberry Editors: Emma Longcope, Erik Lambert Contributing Editor: Chris Kalman


Art Director: David Boersma

CONTRIBUTORS Photographers: Merrick Ales, Andrew Bradberry, George Cave, Clinch Collection, Jeff Deikis, Andy Earl, Ken Etzel, Mark Evans, Tess Ferguson, Bob Gaines/Vertical Adventures, Jason Gebauer, Jon Glassberg, Alan Goldbetter, Stephen Gosling, Alice Hill Collection, Michelle Hoffman, Bill Johnsmiller, Andrew Kauffman Collection, Cheyne Lempe, Lightner Collection, Michael Lim, Nick Martino, Alex Moody, Ben Moon, Woody Pahl, Brian Poon Photo, Greg Powell, John Price, Alton Richardson, Jeff Rueppel, Karuna Sah, Ashley Saupe, Mike Schirf, Jeff Shapiro, Austin Siadak, Edwin Teran, Matt Van Biene, Magdalena Waluszek, Jeremiah Watt, Chris Weidner, Forest Woodward, Bernd Zeugswetter Writers: Tess Ferguson, Alan Goldbetter, Mike and Lilliana Libecki, Kai and Connie Lightner, John Long, Emma Longcope, Jim McCarthy, Ashley Saupe, Jeff Shapiro, Mark and Janelle Smiley, Chris Weidner, Alice Hill, Libby Sauter, Andrew Schurr, Jonathan Wachtel Artists: Emma Longcope The Guidebook to Membership is made possible by contributions from members like you. This is your Guidebook. This is your Club. Our Vision: A united community of competent climbers and healthy climbing landscapes. Our Mission: To support our shared passion for climbing and respect for the places we climb. The American Alpine Club 710 10th Street, Suite 100, Golden, CO 80401 Phone: (303) 384-0110 • Website: Printed in the U.S.A. All rights reserved. Copyright ©2017 The American Alpine Club. Reproduction without permission is prohibited. Photographs copyrighted by photographer unless otherwise noted.

a [Cover] Jewell Lund scouts out her next



move on the Labyrinth (5.11R), a classic test piece of the Darran Mountains, belayed by the late Kyle Dempster in the fog below. Kyle made incredible contributions to the climbing community and was lost in the Karakoram during the summer of 2016. Read Nathan Smith's tribute to Kyle in the upcoming 2017 American Alpine Journal (page 369). AAC member Forest Woodward [Right] Dylan Johnson enjoys the steep and featured sandstone at Table Mountain in South Africa. AAC member Austin Siadak

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17-55 mm 1:28 NS

L E N S 72MM


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a Nathaniel Boucher and Cory Chikie scale Cardiac ArĂŞte (5.10c) on the Grand Sentinel, Banff National park, Canada. AAC member John Price

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a Hjรถrdis Rickert enjoys perfect hands on the inaptly named climb, The Headache (5.10) in Zion National Park, UT. AAC member Bernd Zeugswetter

10 | American Alpine Club

a Forrest Shearer and Nick Russell ascending one of the steepest lines the Wasatch Range has to offer. AAC member Andy Earl T H E




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17-55 mm 1:28






a [This Page] Pat Kingsbury battles

the final roof pitch of Rusty Dagger (5.12a R) of the Black Wall, Mount Evans, CO. AAC member Jason Gebauer [Facing Page, Top] Erica Engle on the ultra classic Cascading Crystal Kaleidoscope (5.8 PG13) in the Gunks, NY. AAC member Jeremiah Watt [Facing Page, Bottom] Katha Saurwein sticks the last move on Slap Dancer (27) on Albert's Tomb at the Organ Pipes near the summit of Mt. Wellington, Tasmania. AAC member Jon Glassberg

12 | American Alpine Club

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a [Left] Edwin Teran enjoys alpine climbing on the Magic Dagger (5.13a) at the Wizard's Gate, in Estes Park, CO. AAC member Michael Lim [Top Right] A snowy approach in Joshua Tree, CA. AAC member Ben Moon [Bottom Right] Lindsay Hastings' commands: "Climbing?" "Climb on," "Rocking?" "Rock on!" AAC member Alex Moody

14 | American Alpine Club


a [Top Left] Crystal Yin Lie enjoys a hand jam rest before heading into slopey finger locks to the anchors on Rebar (5.11a) in the Red River Gorge, KY. AAC member Greg Powell [Top Right] Mikhail Martin enjoys the classic Atari (V6) at the Happy Boulders in Bishop, CA. AAC member Ken Etzel [Bottom] Dave Allfrey sets up the portaledge camp on the Great Cross Pillar, Sam Ford Fjord, Baffin Island. AAC member Cheyne Lempe






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a [This Page] Meredith Riley goes

all in on the human-powered experience in Yellowstone National Park. AAC member Jeremiah Watt [Facing Page , Top Left] With a backpack full of gear and a cardboard sign, where would you go? AAC member Matt Van Biene [Facing Page, Top Right] Soggy alpine Scrabble provides a temporary distraction from the rainy weather at basecamp. AAC member Forest Woodward [Facing Page, Bottom] Carl Zoch takes a breather from longboarding in Bishop, CA. AAC member Ken Etzel

16 | American Alpine Club

Guidebook to Membership | 17



An interview with Sharp End podcast whiz Ashley Saupe


e caught up with nomad Ashley Saupe as she was moving into a school bus outside of Haines, Alaska for her fifth season dispatching at a heli-skiing operation. The rest of the year she lives out of her van, White Fang, instructing at the Outward Bound School in Colorado and Alaska and climbing, snowboarding, and surfing around the country. Her Sharp End podcast, which brings alive stories and lessons from Accidents in North American Climbing, has been downloaded tens of thousands of times and is earning rave reviews on iTunes. Ashley was kind enough to share her behind-the-sounds perspective, and what keeps her motivated on the road.

AAC: What’s your background, and how did you get the podcast idea?

AS: I was raised in Alaska, and I just love the mountains. After skiing and snowboarding much of my childhood, I got really into climbing rocks when I was 20 and did pretty much only that. I would work for three months, go on three- to four-month climbing road trips, then repeat that cycle year after year. I bought a van in the States (an Alaskan’s term for the Lower 48), and there were long stretches of road where my selection of music got old. I started getting into podcasts and found that they didn’t hold my attention, or the shows were too long, and I started thinking to myself: “What do I want to listen to?” I wanted to listen to Accidents in North American Mountaineering (now titled Accidents in North American Climbing). I wanted those stories to come to life. I called Accidents editor Dougald McDonald and said, “Hey, I have this idea. What do you think?” I told him, “I just got my first-ever computer last year, and I don’t know what the ins and outs of making a podcast are. But I’m a quick learner… I want to figure it out.”

How do you find your subjects?

I think that’s my biggest struggle: getting people to interview. If I ask five people to do an interview, I get “no” maybe four out of five times. I’m not trying to embarrass anyone—I just want everyone to grow from others’ mistakes. How can we as a community learn from this situation? Another sad but significant setback: many of the stories in the book are fatalities, so that doesn’t really make for a good interview, right?

What’s your creative process?

This all happens from the road. I don’t think I’ve ever recorded an interview in the same town. Interviews often happen on the side of the road or in parking lots, sometimes pirating McDonald’s Wi-Fi. I’ve edited podcasts on airplanes, in the passenger seat of cars on road trips, in tents, and during Wilderness First Responder courses. It’s been a huge learning curve. I think that editing is the biggest challenge for me, because I can have an hour-long interview, but I feel like there’s something about 20-25 minutes that is really the golden length of time; that way people can really hang on and listen. It’s a lot of shaving and cutting and piecing together, which is challenging for me, especially when I have minimal Wi-Fi.

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You’ve now released 13 podcasts. What accident trends do you see?

QQ The majority of my interviewees have been men. Maybe it’s because men are more eager to talk about their accidents. Maybe it’s because they tend to have more incidents. I think I’ve only interviewed one woman, and she had the incident because of a male partner. Also, men want to impress women. It’s an interesting common theme, men… have that human factor. QQ Mistakes in judgment. You coast, and then you think, “Oh, shoot, why did I do that?” Frequently you have no idea what caused you to make a poor decision. QQ General overconfidence and inaccurate self-assessment. QQ Poor planning around (and inability to read) the weather. QQ Wanting to be really fast and efficient doesn’t always have the best outcome. QQ All 13 stories so far have resulted in major injuries—“I fractured my pelvis and had a compound femur fracture,” or “I had a major concussion,” or “I had to get heli-dragged off something major.” Consequences can be very real.

What do you hope your listeners will take away from the podcast?

I hope it affects the community. I hope that the Sharp End is a valuable resource that people actually use and learn from. These stories aren’t what-ifs—they’re things that have happened. They could happen to your brother, they could happen to your best friend, or your boyfriend or your girlfriend; they can happen to anybody, and they can happen to you. It’s serious, and if we really are the outdoor community we think we are, we will come together and we will learn, grow from, and share each other’s mistakes.

How have listeners reacted to the podcast?

Most of the episodes have been really well received. I’ve gotten three specific emails that have said something like, “Ashley, that podcast could have possibly just saved my life.” It’s a good reminder of why I started this and why I spend 15 hours editing each episode.

Anything else you want the community to know?

Everything we do has a ripple effect. If we’re willing to share mistakes and misjudgments and experiences, then we as a community can learn from them and really, truly come together for the better of all. A lot of accidents happen, but the important thing is: How do you respond in that very moment? Do you freak out? Do you take care of the situation? Do you panic? Do you help others? Who are you, in that very moment? And then what do you do post-accident, in terms of your growth? These are questions worth considering, even if you’ve never been in an accident or near-miss.

Why are you an AAC member?

The community. It’s a place where we value each other; we value each other’s knowledge; we value each other’s experience. I get to meet people, hear their experiences, and share them. That’s important to me—sharing—and I see our whole community doing it: sharing experiences, sharing stories, sharing gear, sharing housing… that’s why I climb.

a [Facing Page] Ashley on a snow mobile trip up the

Jarvis Glacier, Alaska. AAC member Woody Pahl [This Page] The refurbished school bus in Haines, Alaska, where Ashley lives for part of the year. Ashley Saupe Collection

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REMEMBERING NICK CLINCH The Ultimate Shadow Player


By Jim McCarthy

first met Nick Clinch in the Canadian Bugaboos in 1954. That’s more improbable than you probably think. Being a climber on an expedition to the Bugs in the ‘50s was nothing that present day climbers could possibly imagine. The old mining road was totally impassable to normal vehicles. We

retained a rancher and convinced him to haul us in using his tractor, and it took a full day just to get to the trailhead (as if you could call what we hiked up a “trail”). There just weren’t many climbers out there doing those sorts of remote expeditions. Another climbing team was the last thing we expected to see.

We were pretty shocked when we arrived in Boulder Camp to precisely that. But when a tall, lanky guy ambled over to us, stuck out his hand, and said, "You must be Hans Kraus, and you must be Jim McCarthy,” ‘shocked’ doesn’t even begin to describe the way we were feeling. ‘Dumbfounded’ would be more accurate.

How Nick had any idea who we were, I didn’t know then, and I still don’t know today. But that was Nick Clinch. Through out 50+ years of our friendship, he was always surprising me with the depth of his learning, and his intellectual stamina. I got used to him knowing things that I couldn’t fathom how he knew.

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Nick and I became fast friends on that trip to the Bugs. At that time, I was not yet a member of the AAC, and Nick had just joined. Nick got on to the council (what later became the board of directors) within a year or two of joining the club. A few years later, he was president! To this day, he is still the youngest person ever to hold that distinction. The AAC was a very exclusive club at that time. If you wanted to join, you needed two letters of recommendation from present members plus a complete list of everything you’d ever climbed. Nick understood very early on in his career that such prerequisites not only would, but also should, change. Opening up the AAC to more reasonable membership requirements, and really making it a national community (instead of basically an aristocratic Ivy League, East Coastonly institution) ended up being the great achievement of my presidency (from 1986–1988), but it was Nick who planted the seed of the idea. Of course, that’s how he operated. He hated the limelight, and he often utilized me, or others, as front men for his campaigns. But behind the scenes, he was a magician. His work—much of which has gone unheralded, since he was so quiet about it—really laid the foundation for what the AAC is today. One of Nick’s best magic tricks was the acquisition of the Climbers’ Ranch. During his presidency, climbers were notorious for causing a ruckus at the Conservation Campground in the Tetons. As a result, the Park Service exiled them to an old work camp that was basically a dump. There was an old incinerator there that Yvon Chouinard cleaned out and lived in for a long time, to give you a sense of the place at that time. Meanwhile, climbing visitation was increasing. So climbers and the Park Service in the Tetons were on a collision course that Nick, in particular, wanted to avoid. Now, it just so happened that Horace Albright, one of the icons of the National Park Service, lived right next door to Nick in Palo Alto, California. They used to get together from time to time. One day, without expecting much, Nick went to Horace and said, “Look, we got a problem in the Tetons, where you used to be the superintendent. It’s come to my attention that there’s an old dude ranch there you guys just took over. Why don’t you give that to the AAC? We’ll fix it and use it as a place for climbers and other people to stay.” He never thought that Horace would go for it, but that’s precisely what happened. You could write a book about everything Nick did, and was, to American climbing, and to the AAC. On top of everything you’ve just read, he was the main player in helping bring the AAC its first female president, Alison Osius. Nick is widely recognized as one of the finest expedition leaders in the history of big mountain climbing. He amassed the greatest private collection of climbing literature and memorabilia in the world (which, thanks to his generosity, is now housed in the AAC library). Trying to sum up Nick in a few sentences, or a couple pages, is an almost impossible task. And yet, here I am trying to do just that. What I remember about Nick is that he was blessed with vision. As we look at the state of climbing today—not only nationwide, but also worldwide—a lot of what we take for granted today, such as the popularity of bouldering, Nick foresaw at quite a young age. Today the American Alpine Club is a community that inspires and brings together climbers of all walks of life, regardless of gender, education, skin color, social class, status, or anything else. That is something I am very proud of, and it is something that may not have happened without Nick’s constant guidance. What else is there to say? Nick was the ultimate shadow player. He never wanted the spotlight to be shining upon him. Now that he’s gone, it feels good to celebrate him, and put him, for once, in the spotlight where he belongs.

a [Facing Page] Nick Clinch reporting home on the Gasherbrum I / Hidden Peak 1958

Expedition. Andrew Kauffman Collection [This Page, Top] AAME team back at McMurdo (left to right) Standing: Evans, Wahlstrom, Clinch, Corbet, Schoening. Kneeling: Hollister, Silverstein, Marts, Long, Fukushima. 1966 AAME team [This Page, Middle] Nick arriving in Tahiti. 1966 AAME team [This Page, Bottom] Nick and his books at his home library. Clinch Collection

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A R T I FA C T S from the AAC Library

EVEREST EXPEDITION GLACIER GLASSES Climbers on the British 1933 Mount Everest Expedition wore these goggles while setting the altitude record for climbing without supplemental oxygen (28,120 feet). This record was not broken until 1978.

MOUNT MORAN PITON This piton was likely placed on the North Ridge of Mt. Moran (in the Teton Range) by Paul Petzoldt when he made the first ascent of the route circa 1940. The piton was pulled out by George Wallerstein in 1963.

FIRST ICE SCREW USED IN THE U.S. While climbing in Switzerland in 1958, Nicholas Clinch was inspired by the first ice screws. He took the pictured lag screw to New York, where he fashioned a small new version with an eye loop. These screws were tested on the second ascent of the Nisqually Icefall in 1959.

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BRADFORD WASHBURN’S CRAMPONS These Cassin crampons, donated by Brad Washburn, were used by Riccardo Cassin on the South Face of Denali [Mt. McKinley] in 1961.

THE MAKING OF A PITON These pitons, gifts from Yvon Chouinard, show the tool’s progression over time.

COIL OF HAWSER 3 STRAND ROPE This rope was found with the body of Art Gilkey in 1993, 40 years after he was swept away by an avalanche during the 1953 K2 Expedition. Charles Houston speculated that Gilkey had cut himself loose to save the lives of his teammates.

YOSEMITE LANTERN SLIDE This photographic transparency of Climbing Mt. Lyell in Yosemite National Park was likely taken on a Sierra Club Trip circa 1910. The shot was taken by Francis Farquhar (18871974), longtime member of both the American Alpine Club and Sierra Club.

To learn more about our community's history check out the online exhibits at

aAAC member Michelle Hoffman Guidebook to Membership | 23

UN SPOKEN by Jeff Shapiro

a Chris Gibisch crests a ridge line at 20,000' on Brammah II's lower wall after the pair's first full day on their new route, Pnuema (VI AI4, M5, 1300m). AAC member Jeff Shapiro

24 | American Alpine Club


s I stopped to catch my breath, I looked down and saw 20,998’ on my altimeter. During the momentary reprieve, I scanned across the expansive Kashmir Himalaya and Himachal Pradesh. Surveying our quintessential morning and the progress we’d made brought a smile to my sun-cracked lips. Each step had been earned. Not just another dreamy escape from routine life, being here, now filled my heart, my head, and my lungs. Balanced on my front points, I looked down at my partner, Chris Gibisch. Behind him, an expanse of jagged peaks reminded me of teeth in the open mouth of a Great White Shark surging from a dark ocean. The early morning sun creeping in highlighted our height and remoteness. I could tell by the way he moved that Chris felt strong. He was a small contrast of bright color amongst a background of black, white and cool blues. I took another deep breath, this time more of a sigh, knowing we had come so far but still needed to maintain momentum. When I looked down to see if he was ready, he flashed me a smile, as if to say, “Can you believe how epic this is?” Chris and I had climbed together for so long that we no longer needed words to communicate. We had come to Northern India almost a month prior, looking for adventure and exploration. The last time we had gone on a major expedition, deep into the heart of Western China, our trust and bond grew to sacred. We were lucky to have established a new route on Mt. Grosvenor’s steep and beautiful northwest face, but during our descent, we were caught in a violent storm. In our fight to rappel endlessly down rotten ice and rock, the lack of sleep and massive effort caught up to us, causing Chris to involuntarily fall asleep at each rappel anchor. Our routine for survival was simple. I’d rap to the end of the ropes, swing around the face while fighting high winds and blinding snow, and find something solid. After establishing an anchor, I’d yell up to Chris, waking him up so he could slide down the ropes to me. After that expedition, we were no longer friends—we were brothers. It had been six years since that trip to the Daxue Shan and so much “life” had happened. Chris and I had climbed all over the world together, and now, couldn’t have felt more ready to be nearing the summit of a wild and beautiful new route in the Kashmir Himalaya. However, as our day progressed, I felt increasingly strung out due to dehydration and lack of acclimatization. During our first rappel after reaching the top, with one of our two ropes staunchly stuck, I started to bonk. It was a strange feeling to recognize that my energy source needed to switch from physical strength to mental fortitude, and a willingness to suffer. My body was beginning to fail, and Chris saw it in my eyes. Without a word, he tied into a free end and went back up to clear the rope. As he left the belay, my mind drifted back to that long and trying decent in China, and I thought, “Oh, how the tables have turned.” Once a route is done, it’s done. No story or description can accurately explain or give that experience to someone else. The magic is the experience. When a route changes me, the fact my partner also lived it—present to share the suffering, the growth, and even the profound— makes the experience less lonely. I’ve found that as attempts, triumphs, and defeats build, the partnership becomes less about a reliance on each other and more about a tangible solidarity. To honestly tell your partner, “Hey man, I just don’t have it today,” to find encouragement when it’s appropriate and understanding when it’s required, creates a level of trust that’s hard to come by in non-consequential life. In India, high on Brammah II’s south face, I told Chris I was worked and needed to stop. It was dark, and an energy-sapping traverse made me want give in to my weakness. I was threatening our momentum. Chris knew he needed to do his job as my partner—as my brother. We needed to keep moving, to solve one problem at a time with a calm patience. He knew this would create our best reality. I knew he was right, and I was proud, humbled, and grateful to be there with him. Around midnight, we sat with our boots, harnesses and helmets on, wrapped in our bags on icy seats chopped into a steep slope at almost exactly 20,000’. To be stationary, able to rest our minds and bodies, felt euphoric. As lightning strobed the distant horizon, we brewed enough water to make the cells in my body come back to life. I looked over at Chris, smiled and realized with certainty our partnership was the defining highlight of our route, many times more powerful than the view from any summit.

Guidebook to Membership | 25


PARTNERSHIPS C limbing is an inherently partnerand community-based pursuit: you rely on your belayer for physical and sometimes emotional support or

encouragement when things get tough. From penguins to pee and everything in between, four different duos sound off on what they've learned from their closest belay buddies.


Over eight years ago, I was climbing a route when I encountered a huge dyno move. I was terrified to attempt the jump but too stubborn to come down. My mom (belaying) screamed up, "Go for it. I got you." I heard her, but I wasn't convinced and still refused to jump. Then she yelled, "Think about it like this: I am motivated to keep you safe. Not just because of love, but money. If you fall and get hurt, I will have to pay the expensive doctor bill." I thought about it, looked down at her and laughed, then went for it. My mom has always been my primary belayer. There is no one who I trust more. When I'm frustrated on a route, she helps me calm down and relax. She also helps me figure out sequences when I’m projecting a route and offers advice on making moves more efficient. She can read my body language when I’m climbing and instinctively knows when I’m timid about making a move, getting tired, or about to fall. As I prepare to head off to college this fall, my biggest concern isn't being on my own or learning to handle life independently. Instead, I'm most concerned about finding a replacement belayer who can fill her "big shoes."

a [This Page] Kai and Connie in Yosemite. Lightner Collection [Facing Page, Top left] Tess and Alan topping out on the summit of Pirita Central. AAC member Alan Goldbetter [Facing Page, Bottom Left] Alan searching for the next objective. AAC member Tess Ferguson [Facing Page,Right] Tess starting the long journey home. AAC member Alan Goldbetter

26 | American Alpine Club


Being the primary belayer for a young competitive climber is a job that could drive any parent to drink. You have to be on your feet belaying for hours at a time, four to five days a week. The job is unpaid, and your "client" often has an attitude and gets mad at you for something that you said or did WHILE TRYING TO HELP HIM. Thankfully after persevering through the first six years, my climber/ belayer relationship with my son significantly improved, and I began to enjoy the job. It's rare for a teenage boy to want his mom to tag along during trips and events. However, if you're a mom belayer who doesn't mind bringing him and his friends on trips AND agree to belay full time, you suddenly become cool. I started belaying Kai at age 6, during the first week that he began rock climbing. If my kid was going to climb, I wanted to be responsible for his safety. I know him better than anyone. I can watch his body movements on a climb and know what he is thinking and how he plans to do a sequence. This allows me to prepare in advance to make adjustments in order to keep him safe. Moreover, after accumulating a large number of belay hours with the same climber, you learn their climbing style and have a huge database of past sequences that you have watched them climb. This comes in handy when they're projecting routes and need help figuring out the beta. Although I might complain a little (okay, a lot) about our early climb/belay years, if I had it to do over again, I would make the same decisions. Being intricately involved in my son's journey through the climbing world has undoubtedly forged a closer bond between us. That's my baby... all 6'3" of him.


I’m shamelessly doing something between whimpering, shivering, and crying. It’s midnight in Patagonia, and we have one more river to cross to return to camp. My senses are clouded by the compounded stress of the past 48 hours of climbing, but my fear of water has not dulled. I also know that if there’s anyone I’ll follow into the icy abyss, it’s this Alan person, this stranger I have come to respect, trust, admire, and need over the past month. The icebergs lurking at the lake’s outlet flash upstream as the convulsive water envelops my hips. When Alan and I began our expedition we had spent fewer than 12 hours together. Positive references and “overstoke” about remote first ascents united us for the most challenging climbing objective either of us had attempted. As the trials of the trip worked us raw we became machines, exploiting each other’s strengths and protecting one another’s weaknesses. Alan led the run-out slabs, I led the loose alpine terrain. He cooked, I divided the gear. If I wanted to cry he made me laugh instead, and I helped him to believe in our potential. It wasn’t until we were well across the black and frothy water that I released my death grip on Alan’s gear loop. I hugged him long and hard. Trying adventures have the potential to bring out my best while simultaneously tempting me towards a lesser self. Alan not only praised the good, but pulled me away from the lurking provocation of pessimism, cowardice, and angst. A belief in a common goal is what brought us together, but a belief in each other is what ultimately brought success on Pirita Central.


With the help of the AAC’s Mountaineering Fellowship Grant, I was about to attempt a new route in Patagonia with a woman I had never tied in with. I wondered if I would even recognize Tess’ face as I scanned the horde of backpackers in the hot, dingy bus station. After finding her sitting on the dusty floor, surrounded by climbing gear, I added my own bags to the pile and began nervously chatting away. With each passing hour the awkwardness dissipated, and a bond was formed. Our partnership, a happy, platonic, climbing-based relationship, is strengthened as much by our differences as by our similarities. Tess’s realistic self-confidence and uncanny ability to know just what we can handle helped open my eyes to our true potential. Conversely, my tendency to balk while making tough decisions helped us to better critically evaluate our options. In many partnerships this dynamic feels like a tug-of-war. With Tess, it feels like the encouraging, gentle tug I feel on the rope as we work our way up the mountain, one step at a time. Thanks to Tess, I understand that many goals I deemed impossible are achievable. Without her, I never would have felt worthy enough to attempt a first ascent on our maiden voyage. Our summit photo depicts pair of battle-weary climbers wearing triumphant grins, and beneath the surface is the symbiotic bond forged by the red-hot coals of exploratory climbing.

Guidebook to Membership | 27


Climbing with my wife on classic routes across North America has taught me so much. One of the main lessons that comes into play again and again is that we each have natural strengths and weaknesses. A great partner is strong where you are weak and vise versa. Janelle is really good at climbing tight chimneys. I am not. I am good at climbing sketchy run-out sections. She is not. Equipped with this kind of knowledge, we strategize how to tackle a given route. The bigger the route, the more important it is to play to our strengths. The end goal is always the same: moving safely and efficiently up and down the route. Decision making (a.k.a. mountain sense) is a department that we're equally strong in. This is nice because it allows us to share the load 50/50. Many people underestimate how much energy it takes to make decisions while climbing. Macro and micro route finding, finding and building strong anchors, watching the weather, eating and drinking enough, and time management all fall in this category. Sharing this “mental load” makes our time in the mountains that much more enjoyable and relaxing.

a [This Page] The Smileys celebrate on top of Denali after climbing the

Cassin route. Smiley Collection [Facing Page, Top] Mike and Lilli skin for a first descent while in Antarctica. AAC member Mike Schirf [Facing Page,Bottom] Mike and Lilli walking around Ushuaia, Argentina before leaving for Antarctica on the ship. AAC member Mike Schirf

28 | American Alpine Club


It’s easy to get dehydrated on a big wall like El Capitan, but that wasn’t exactly our problem at the moment... I had to go. Badly. Luckily I had the haul bag at the hanging belay. As Mark jugged below, I pulled out the tube of Pringles we had brought to use as a pee bottle (after enjoying the crispy, salty treat). I relieved myself in the can, careful not to drip any on to Mark. Then it was his lead, so we switched out all our gear, and he started off. Once he left the hanging belay, I grabbed the pee tube and dumped it out, away from the wall. What I didn't consider was the updraft, which caught all the urine and unleashed it upon Mark. Four years later, Mark had the opportunity to return the favor at nearly 20,000’. We were nestled in our two-person sleeping bag after skiing Huandoy Este in Peru. To ward off the effects of altitude, we were drinking lots of water. For dinner, we enjoyed an ever-so-tasty freeze-dried meal. After the edible contents are consumed, the dinner bag can serve another purpose. It was dark, and Mark felt the strong urge. He couldn't find his headlamp, so he grabbed the bag, kneeled in our shared sleeping bag right next to my head, and started to relieve himself. It did not have the depth of sound he was used to, and at that moment he realized the bag was upside down, pee splattering all over our sleeping bag and my head. So, pick a partner you can pee on, and laugh about it later. That’s the trail to true partnership.


My daughter turns 14 in a couple weeks. Soon we will be off to Peru for more humanitarian work and an attempt at her goal of climbing a 6,000-meter peak in South America. Lilliana is my favorite partner on adventures, and we have been thankful to travel far and wide, from near our home in the Wasatch Mountains to Yosemite, from Antarctica to Nepal and Africa. I never imagined that she would teach me so much. I am reminded of another inspiring family member. In 1936, my grandfather Harold was also 14 years old, growing up on a farm in North Dakota. On a cool spring day at school in a small country classroom, he saw a picture of Yosemite National Park in a magazine and was instantly enchanted. He hitchhiked, rode trains, and walked many miles until he found himself among the majesty of Yosemite Valley! If it were not for my grandfather and his wanderlust, my family would not have grown up in the foothills of the Sierra Nevada Mountains, just 30 miles from Yosemite National Park. On my first climbing trip to Yosemite at 17 years old, I also became enchanted. I went to my grandmother (Harold’s wife) to discuss my dilemma of wanting to leave college and climb every day. She said, “Michael, the time is now, and you must live right now; you have a passion and you must listen to it.” I drove to Yosemite and never looked back. I lived in Yosemite and in my truck for the next five years. My climbing lifestyle became training for big first ascents all over the world. I hope that I somehow inspire my daughter to love the mountains, and to find some of her greatest joys while high on summits, making sweet turns in powder snow, or during any joyous frolicking among steep nature. We have spent many days in the grandeur of Yosemite, where she learned to love steep walls and waterfalls. I am so grateful to my grandfather. Were it not for him, we may never have begun this family tradition of adventure, seeking out nature and new experiences with Mother Earth.


Being in the mountains with my father is a chance for new opportunities. Breathing in the fresh air and listening to the organic, beautiful sounds of nature clears my mind, and I only think positive thoughts, such as how lucky we are to live this life. My dad is not only my dad, but also a reliable and fun adventure partner. He is constantly motivated, and there is never a boring moment when we are together. With optimism comes patience and positive energy. When my dad and I were on our expedition in Antarctica, we were getting ready to ski down to penguins in hideous, howling winds, and my dad thought that he had lost one of his skins. He paced around looking for it, checked his pack a million times, and even said, "Well, I think we lost a skin, this should be interesting." I knew that it was in his pack, told him to look again, and there it was! Teamwork and optimism are everything. My dad has taught me that when I go into the wilderness, prepared for adventure and mystery, I instantly become a happier, more productive person. Any chance you get to go outside—take it. It will be an eye opener. Whether you are an artist, a climber, a skier, a journalist, or anyone really, there is always something new to inhale in nature.

Guidebook to Membership | 29

30 | American Alpine Club

BEARS EARS 32 | American Alpine Club

This past year, incredible areas with unmatched climbing in southeastern Utah have faced potential threats due to proposed legislation. When we asked for your support, over 1,135 of you wrote letters to your elected officials. You shared your unique perspectives, highlighted the importance of conserving these unique lands, and helped us communicate with policymakers and partners in Washington, DC. On December 28, 2016, President Barak Obama protected the area by designating the Bears Ears National Monument. Our advocacy efforts paid off: this Monument designation is the first ever to include rock climbing in the proclamation. These excerpts are from your letters—they remind us of the beauty and opportunity in the Bears Ears region.

a The beauty of Bears Ears National Monument, as seen from The Wall, Indian Creek, UT. AAC member Mark Evans Guidebook to Membership | 33

“Being one of the very few women in computer science at a prestigious government laboratory is a trying feat in itself, but I can attribute my tenacity and determination to give back to my country directly to my love for our wild spaces. There is no better force than that of nature to encourage me to continue as a minority in a difficult field for an incredible cause such as national security; when my strongest love in life is for a place like Southern Utah, there is no question in my mind as to why I choose to serve my country to protect it.”


34 | American Alpine Club

"The dead silence of a night under the Cottonwood trees and the desert stars is one experience I wish every American could have. Some of the most formative years of my life have been spent in the deserts of Utah and it pains me to think that special interest groups threaten the sanctity of these areas.”

—BRIAN ZIELINSKI, NY “I had recently separated from the military after eight years of service in the Navy and found myself in a spell of depression. I was advised to try something new and challenging to give me something to work towards and accomplish. I enrolled at a local climbing gym for a two week trial and took to it immediately. After a few months of learning the ropes and getting into shape, I took a trip out to Utah to try the real deal. I hired a guide who has since become a good friend and he empowered me to achieve success on a route that challenged me both physically and mentally and put me further into my reserves than I have ever been. Standing at the top of Ancient Art in the Fischer Towers was a pivotal moment for me. I broke down and wept, standing so high above the desert with nothing but beautiful landscape in all directions. I formed a connection with that landscape that truly is one of a kind; that landscape became the foundation of my recovery and my ability to tackle daily life once again.”


a Sonia Buckley enjoys last light and wide hands on Steve Carruthers Memorial Route (5.11), Indian Creek, UT. AAC member Austin Siadak




y the early 1980s, clean climbing tools largely equaled the holding power of pitons and often were more versatile and efficient to use. However, the standardized safety checks and practical modus operandi—already prescribed in virtually all other adventure sports—simply did not exist for climbing. Universal strategies were limited to “never step on the rope” and “never take your brake hand off the rope while belaying.” To address this issue, publisher George Meyers asked me to write the first definitive book on climbing anchors. I took the gig, wondering how I could ever gather all the far-flung information. It took more than a year to compile the data, drawn from many sources, to name (and in many cases, invent) protocols and techniques, then wrangle the whole gorilla into a text. Over the next few years, the book became a de facto manual for thousands of climbers. Someone would buy one copy, then pass it on to 50 others. At that time I’d spent most of my life in school, but it took the publication of Climbing Anchors to appreciate the power and need of education. Others came to share, discuss, and endlessly revise my methods. Many other books and articles on safety and anchors quickly followed, each a work in progress as lab testing continued and techniques were refined and field tested on cliffs the world over. Educational tools and standardized procedures are not only practical and efficient. They also directly save lives. While I have always considered myself primarily a short story writer, I’ve lost count of the people who swore to me they would have died had they not studied that first anchor book. Of course people exaggerate, and that too is part of our climbing nation, when the team was saved by the rusty sky hook, cha cha cha. How we love to talk about gear. And if you don’t know how to use it, you might die. That’s what makes the game the real deal, and education so important. My own takeaway from this progression is that education builds connective tissue between distant groups and individuals. It nurtures community and refines methods though a collective process. One of the lasting benefits of group input and peer review is the establishment of universal standards for basic procedures: the alpine equivalent of the dive tables found in SCUBA, or the building code for engineers. These don’t attempt to tell a diver where to dive, or an engineer what bridge to build, but they go far in keeping people alive, no matter the situation. The recent video series (produced jointly by the AAC and Adidas Terrex Outdoor) adds a much-needed digital dimension to this end. A sport without standardized systems is little more than the individual players. A community is made from the shared values and procedures we all respectfully follow, and which promote, rather than limit, our freedom in high places.

36 | American Alpine Club


Over the next few years, the book became a de facto manual for thousands of climbers. Someone would buy one copy, then pass it on to 50 others.

a [Top Right] John on the Lost Arrow Spire, 1984. [Bottom Left] John in El Cap Meadow, 1985. [Bottom Right] John Long on Hades (5.12) Suicide Rock, CA 1984. Bob Gaines/Vertical Adventures



Nothing cements trust like the vulnerability and intensity of sharing a rope. For well over a decade, climbing has kickstarted lasting friendships and helped me connect with partners and places around the world.

YOSEMITE, 2010 At the AAC's third annual International Climbers' Meet (ICM)M, I climbed with Eszter Vorhath, a 35-year-old Hungarian, fulfilling her lifelong goal of climbing in the Valley. She told me this trip, her first to the U.S., had changed her life by inspiring her to travel, climb, and prioritize her dreams.

a [This Page, Left] Eszter Vorhath on Sons of

Yesterday, Yosemite. AAC member Chris Weidner [This Page, Right] Chris Weidner and a foreign climber sharing stoke after a difficult crack climb at Indian Creek in 2008. AAC member Magdalena Waluszek [Facing Page] Climbers bouldering above Tehran, Iran. AAC member Chris Weidner

38 | American Alpine Club

UTAH, 2008 When the American Alpine Club organized the first-ever ICM in the U.S., I immediately volunteered as a host climber, eager to experience the fellowship of ascent. Fifteen languages from 24 countries overwhelmed the crackle of the evening fire at Indian Creek, Utah. Jane from Ireland raved about learning how to jam, Julia from South Africa recounted her hardest trad lead ever, and Yasushi from Japan pantomimed his hilarious battle with a 5.11 offwidth.

IRAN, 2011 During an AAC-organized climbers' exchange, we were fortunate to boulder, clip bolts along a remote highway, and climb multi-pitch granite above 13,000 feet. After two weeks in Iran I felt like a privileged guest. Strangers treated us with extraordinary kindness, and many went so far as to thank me personally for visiting their country. This exchange taught me that Iranians and Americans are of very similar hearts and minds.

SIBERIA, 2009 Alex Honnold and I were the token Americans in the first Siberian meet to accept foreign climbers. He and I clocked the fastest time in a bizarre speed-aid competition, though we didn’t exactly “win” because we couldn’t understand the rules. In any case, we laughed and bonded with the Russians over climbing, our only shared language.

IRELAND, 2016 After six days of sunshine, I experience the dreary Northern Ireland I had imagined since accepting Damien O’Sullivan’s invitation to the Fair Head climbing meet. I last climbed with Damien in 2006, at another climbing meet in Wales. The weather was awful, and I was flummoxed by double ropes, among other British impedimenta. But it became one of the most meaningful trips of my life. Since 2006 I had changed jobs, bought a house, gotten married... but climbing is wonderful like that. You rope up with someone after 10 years and, save for deeper creases around the eyes and whiter hair, it’s as if time has barely passed. He and I stroll to what feels like the edge of the world. I drop my pack to the wet earth and, crouching low, peer over the edge. You’d never guess this is land’s end; the Atlantic Ocean has disappeared and the ground is lost in fog. The horizon fades in and out as phantoms of cloud appear and then vanish with the wind. Damien throws one end of an 80-meter cord off the cliff. It will just touch down. Sheer, columnar dolerite passes before my eyes as I sink into the murky void on the single line. We climb back up via the two-pitch Sandpiper (E2 5c), a vertical corner crack splashed with delightful face holds. The mist, gummy and palpable, sticks to my skin. The rock isn’t exactly wet, but the ubiquitous veneer of green and white lichen feels slicker than yesterday. With a giant grin, Damien mantels the perfectly flat clifftop.

SOUTH AFRICA, 2017 This year I’ve organized a climbing exchange where 11 Americans, including me and my wife, will rope up with South Africans for two weeks in Cape Town and Johannesburg. Next year, with support from the AAC, we’ll reciprocate by hosting a climbing tour of Colorado and Utah.

Despite cultural differences—and in many cases, because of them—our global community is defined by climbing. It’s our common history, our language, our people, and our gateway to the world. Guidebook to Membership | 39

2016 Annual Report Safety, Strength, Support You’ve become accustomed to annual reports that lead with our financial position and our membership growth. These metrics are great indicators of the quality of our work, programs, and outreach—and they’ve been growing for many years. Yet there are so many behind-the-scenes stories to tell, and more work on the horizon to support our shared passion for climbing and respect for the places we climb.

safety translated into a major focus of our programming in 2016 through the establishment of active conservation and education programs, deepened by partnerships with regional clubs. We truly are operating and cooperating nationally, and participating locally, in a better future for climbers. I expect we’ll look back on this year as a turning point for the Club—and for our community—as we move from supporting our passion for climbing to actively sharing it.

The success of indoor climbing gyms over the past decade has ignited an unprecedented interest in climbing. As we welcome new participants to our world, we have a responsibility to lead and to share best practices in environmental stewardship, climber safety, and technique. For the whole of 2016 we had, for the first time, staff attending to education. While there are many goals in our education program, the main one is to ensure that the people teaching climbing are doing it well. Over the coming years, we will provide the opportunity for volunteer leaders and teachers to access training and education affordably. We cannot do this alone, so we have established partnerships with many regional clubs—the Colorado Mountain Club, Mazamas, and Mountaineers—to deliver more consistent climbing education across the country.

Take a look at some of this year’s biggest milestones and key achievements:

We also identified one skill shared by all roped climbers—the belay— and began a conversation about technique. In 2016, our education team offered more than 100 clinics and published articles + videos to open the dialogue about our most common and essential safety skill. That conversation has not always been easy, but it is one we need to have if we are to establish a thoughtful and comprehensive set of best practices. Also in 2016, we expanded our staff in Conservation and Advocacy. We hosted a day packed with policy meetings in Washington D.C. (two bills on which we commented were passed by the 114th Congress). Notably for climbing, Bears Ears National Monument was designated to protect cultural and recreational resources in southeast Utah. The proclamation for the monument was the first ever to specify rock climbing as a valued activity. The Secretary of the Interior and the Chief of the Forest Service both made formal commitments to improve the recreational permitting system and increase access to our public lands. This is especially important to our partner organizations, which require access in order to teach how to climb safely outdoors. The AAC’s concern for environmental stewardship and climbing 40 | American Alpine Club

QQ We ended the fiscal year on September 30, 2016 with 16,793 members, up from 15,597 in 2015: a 7.7% increase. QQ Total revenue in FY16 was $3.485MM compared to $3.432MM in FY15: a $53K increase. QQ Our total expense in FY16 was $3.614MM compared to $3.462MM in FY15: a $151K increase. (Increased expenses were due to our new investments in education and conservation— both of which were anticipated). QQ Over 600 of you volunteered time at events, on committees, and remotely to help deliver our mission and programs. QQ Sections and chapters continued to expand across the country: 20 new chapters incorporated in 2016 QQ 300 local events were held with 32,000 participants—that’s double our membership. QQ In 2016 we also acquired the funding to increase our Research Grant awards from $4,000 annually to $10,000, for 2017. QQ We awarded $35,000 in Cornerstone Conservation Grants. QQ We launched the Cutting Edge Grant to inspire advanced climbing athletes in pursuit of world-class climbing and mountaineering objectives. QQ Our Live Your Dream grant awarded $20,000 to 58 individuals eager to advance their mountaincraft. QQ Thirty-three rescue missions were operated during fiscal 2016. We did this all together. Thank you.

Phil Powers CEO Read the full report:

Fiscal 2016 Performance 12.91%

12.91% 44.56%


44.56% 14.82%

Expenses $2,502,374

Revenue $3,270,192



Program Services Salaries


Contributions & Grants

Contributions & Grants Membership

Programs & Services Other

2017 Member Survey Results Get to Know Your Fellow Members 83

106 248 1117





5 Favorite AAC Programs

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Guidebook to Membership | 41

Membership Join the Community Together, we share a passion for climbing. When you join the AAC, you’re part of a tribe that’s making a big difference. We support each other with rescue insurance, publications, critical lodging facilities, conservation projects, advocacy, grants, discounts, and more. Regular: $75/year (on auto-renew) $85 single year. Our most popular plan. Student: $40/year (on auto-renew) $50 single year. Must be currently enrolled at an accredited institution. Family: $75 for first adult, $65 for second; $30 for each child (auto-renew) Additional $10/year for single-year plans. Options for one or two adults (18+) plus up to five minors. All members receive full benefits, but we send only one set of publications. Introductory: $45/six months First-time members only. Plan automatically renews at $75/year upon expiration. Visit or call (303) 384-0110.

Connect Member Profile By visiting your online profile at, you can: QQ QQ QQ QQ QQ

find AAC events in your area access all your benefits donate to the Club access Member Share and connect with other members update your account settings

Member Share Meet members. Climb. Share beta. Member Share is a network of members that have opted in to share resources or meet up. It’s completely optional and a great way to meet people in your local climbing community or around the country. By opting in, you can: QQ QQ QQ QQ

find a climbing partner find a couch to sleep on during your next climbing trip search local discounts on gyms, guide services, and gear shops sync up your Mountain Project ticklist

To access Member Share, sign in at

Social Media

#AACGRAM a John Lehrman on the Central Pillar of Frenzy (5.9) during the International Climbers' Meet in Yosemite National Park, CA. AAC member George Cave

42 | American Alpine Club

Support the Club How to Give


The AAC team and the Vertical World's youth team get ready for a fun climbing competition at the 2016 Climbers' Gathering in Seattle, WA. AAC member Brian Poon Photo

Your tax-deductible gift to the American Alpine Club helps members and volunteers pursue the mission and core programs of the Club. From conservation to competency, your donation will work to protect the climbing experience for years to come. Options for giving include a one-time gift, monthly giving, matched gift, stock donation, combined federal campaign, or Great Ranges Fellowship contribution. Visit or email us at to donate or learn more about your preferred method of support.

Piolet Society The Piolet Society honors those who remember the AAC in their estate plans. Most estate gifts come as a bequest through a will or living trust, or as a beneficiary designation of an IRA or life insurance policy. Each of these options allows you to retain full control of your assets during life. Through the Piolet Society, you can leave a legacy as timeless as the mountains themselves. For more information about charitable estate planning, or to join the Piolet Society, please contact us at (303) 384-0110 or

Great Ranges Fellowship The Great Ranges Fellowship (GRF) brings our donor-members together with exclusive events and trips, timely insider communications, access to staff and officials like never before, and more. At the AAC, we value every gift—no matter its size. In recognition of our most generous donors, we’ve created this program. The GRF provides consistent benefits, recognition, and communication to donors at various levels. Most gifts qualify toward annual membership in the GRF including those directed toward key operating programs such as the American Alpine Journal, Accidents in North American Climbing, the American Alpine Club Library, the Grand Teton Climbers’ Ranch, and grant programs. The program does not include Corporate Partners, Media Partners, or fiduciary programs such as expedition support. POWERED BY: Teewinot Fellow: $1,000 QQ exclusive GRF branded Patagonia pack QQ recognition in the American Alpine Journal QQ recognition in the Guidebook to Membership QQ subscription to Alpinist magazine QQ inclusion on the Fellowship insider email QQ AAC membership

Robson Fellow: $2,500 QQ all the benefits of Teewinot Fellow QQ a limited-edition hardcover American Alpine Journal QQ invitation for two to VIP Reception at the Annual Benefit Dinner with purchase of tickets Alpamayo Fellow: $5,000 QQ all the benefits of Robson Fellow QQ two AAC gift memberships to share with your friends and family Eiger Fellow: $10,000 QQ all the benefits of Alpamayo Fellow QQ two additional (four total) invitations to the VIP reception at the Annual Benefit Dinner with purchase of tickets QQ two additional (four total) AAC gift memberships to share with your friends and family Learn more at Guidebook to Membership | 43

Get Involved AAC volunteers are crucial to the functioning of the Club and its programs. Our dedicated volunteers across the country do everything from presiding over the Board of Directors to pouring beer at local events. If you'd like to volunteer on a local level with your section or chapter, visit your section page through and send an email to your section chair.






Twin Cities Chapter

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Salt Lake City Chapter Tahoe Chapter UTAH

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MID-ATLANTIC Central P.A. Chapter


Charleston N.C. Chapter

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Philly Chapter Pittsburgh Chapter Maryland Chapter GREAT LAKES Baltimore Chapter Northern Virgina Chapter D.C. University Chapter Seneca Rocks Chapter WASHINGTON D.C. Richmond Chapter


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Idaho Section Section Chairs: Meghan Kahnle, Jason Luthy Phoenix Chapter Chapter Chairs: Eli Berko, Ben Watson

Western Region Sierra Nevada Section Chairs: Kristin Nute Tahoe Chapter Chapter Chairs: Sam Nies, Adam Selby San Francisco Chapter Chapter Chair: Jeff Rueppel Southwest Section Section Chair: Tony Yeary, Eric O’Rafferty

Flagstaff Chapter Chapter Chair: Jeff Snyder Tucson Chapter Chapter Chair: Lee Jenkins Hawaii Section Section Chair: Open

Northwest Region Cascade Section Section Chairs: Chris Mutzel, Erin Schneider Co-Chairs: Andrew Puhl, Jean Spencer

San Diego Chapter Chapter Chairs: Jonathan Wachtel, Tom Vokes Oregon Section Section Chairs: Graham Zimmerman, Ally Imbody Los Padres Chapter Co-Chair: Preston Corless Chapter Chairs: Paul Hendricks, Will Leith Treasurer: Allison Hendricks Alaska Section Events and Outreach: Julie Farley Section Chairs: Cindi Squire, Clint Helander Arizona Section Section Chair: Open 44 | American Alpine Club

Montana Section Section Chairs: Kevin Brumbach, Emily Stifler

Sawtooth Chapter Chapter Chair: Kevin Dugan

Rocky Mountain Region Front Range Section Chair: Carol Kotchek Denver Chapter Chapter Chairs: Nate Allen, Casey Allen Co-Chair: Colin Holt Boulder Chapter Chapter Chairs: Asa Firestone, Erik Dutilly Western Slope Section Chair: Open Durango Chapter Chapter Chair: Mitch Dorsk Treasurer: Pavel Kostadinov Utah Section Section Chair: Blake Summers Salt Lake City Chapter Chapter Chairs: Byron Havirston, Shingo Ohkawa

Wyoming Section Section Chair: Micah Rush New Mexico Section Section Chair: Dillon Parker

Central Region Midwest Section Section Chair: Ray Kopcinski Chicago Chapter Chapter Chairs: Savannah Buik, Avi Rubinsky Co-Chair: Myung Jin-Oh Twin Cities Chapter Chapter Chair: Steve Schreader Social Chair: Rodel Querbin

Southeast Region Deep South Section Chair: Michael Kidder Southern Appalachian Section Chair: Danny McCracken Columbia, SC Chapter Chapter Chairs: Jennifer Kane, Heather Stuckless Charleston NC Chapter Chapter Chair: Robert Lavarnway Triangle Chapter Chapter Chairs: Dave Thoenen, Brian Peters, Matthew Arevain

Heartland Section Section Chair: Jeremy Collins

Charlotte Chapter Chapter Chair: Garrett Gossett

Arkansas Chapter Chapter Chair: Steve Kirk

Triad Chapter Chapter Chair: Todd Mullenix

Texas Section Section Chair: Adam Mitchell Austin Chapter Chapter Chairs: Brian Deitch, Dan Firer North Central Section Section Chair: Mark Jobman Great Lakes Section Section Chair: Bill Thompson Southeast Michigan Chapter Chapter Chair: Erin Lynch

Asheville Chapter Chapter Chair: Corey Winstead South Carolina Highlands Chapter Chapter Chair: Topher Davis Washington, D.C. Section Section Chair: Dave Giacomin Social Chair: Aliana Zagaytova Education Chair: Tom Cecil D.C. University Chapter Chapter Chairs: Aaron Rabonwitz, Katherine Keimig

Baltimore Chapter Chapter Chair: John Richardson Richmond, VA Chapter Chapter Chairs: Diane Brown, Ben Howard Northern Virginia, Chapter Chapter Chair: Dominic Metcalf Seneca Rocks Chapter Chapter Chairs: Diane Kearns, Tom Cecil Maryland Chapter Chapter Chair: Piotr Andrzejczak

Northeast Region New England Section Section Chairs: Rick Merritt, Nancy Savikas Boston Chapter Chapter Chair: Sam Masters Mid Atlantic Section Section Chairs: Barry Rusnock Social Chair: Rachel Hess Philly Chapter Chapter Chairs: Alex Wildman, Shawn Ryan Central PA Chapter Chapter Chair: Adam Hartman Pittsburgh Chapter Chapter Chair: Jim Kunz Upstate New York Section Section Chairs: Will Roth Metro New York Section Section Chair: Howard Sebold

Chapter Pilot Program Chapters are smaller, more localized organizations within the American Alpine Club. Our Chapters work on a grassroots level in climbing communities across the country, giving members a chance to connect with one another through events, stewardship, and education. Don't have a local Chapter in your area? Would you like to start one? Please email Adam Peters at


“As a new climber attending the Naval Academy, I hit up the New River Rendezvous (now New River Gorge Craggin’ Classic) to escape the daily rigors and to see how my self-taught trad skills measured up. At some point between sandstone sends and nightly dance parties, I met some AAC volunteers who shared the Club’s benefits and its vision of a community of competent climbers. Far from competent myself, and in search of others with the same passion, I was stoked. It wasn’t long before I was at another AAC event outside Washington, D.C. I would go on to rope up with a number of the climbers there and develop lasting friendships. In the Club, I’d found the community I was after. After moving to San Diego for work, it was obvious that the climbing in SoCal was exceptional... but it was missing the community I’d come to enjoy. This led Piotr Andrzejczak and me to found the San Diego Chapter. We envisioned fostering a community based in education, conservation, and stewardship. The response has been awesome, and we’re thankful to have met so many remarkable folks along the way.” —AAC San Diego Chapter Chairman Jonathan Wachtel

Guidebook to Membership | 45

Events The AAC brings our community together at hundreds of events throughout the year, from the Annual Benefit Dinner, which attracts members from across the country, to locally organized climbing meetups and more. AAC members enjoy discounted access to most events.

Craggin’ Classics

Climb the Hill


The American Alpine Club and Access Fund are teaming up to represent climbers in Washington D.C. for our annual "Climb the Hill" event. We will meet with Members of Congress and agency officials to advocate for the protection of public lands, to support outdoor recreation, and to improve climbing management policies.

The Craggin’ Classic series unites climbers around the campfire at world-class climbing destinations nationwide. Each fall, these festivals combine clinics to promote competency with stewardship projects to keep our climbing areas healthy. But most of all, they are an opportunity to hang out and climb. They are gatherings of the tribe.

2017 Dates: May 11–12

Excellence in Climbing Awards

2017 Lineup Smith Rock, OR (is back!) Sept. 15–17

Shelf Road, CO Oct. 20–22

New River Gorge, WV Sept. 22–24

Moab, UT Oct. 27–29

Devil’s Lake, WI Oct. 13–15

Bishop, CA Nov. 3–5

This unique event celebrates inspirational climbing heroes whose achievements also make the world a better place. Honorees at this inaugural Denver-based event include the Hall of Mountaineering Excellence inductees and Cutting Edge Award recipients. The 2017 event, which is sponsored by Adidas, will be capped off with an after party featuring live music, lots of dancing, and a gear raffle. 2017 Date: June 3

International Climbers’ Meet


a AAC member Jeff Deikis {

"The Fall Highball Craggin' Classic is one event I make sure not to miss—and it keeps getting better every year. Climbers from all over the world come together for a weekend of camaraderie, films, and stewardship. Downtown Bishop comes to life with lights, music, gear, beer, and hundreds of psyched climbers laughing, hanging out, and sharing stories. A huge highlight is the volunteer effort to help clean up and care for Eastern Sierra climbing areas. The ’Milks and the Tablelands need the love, and the community pulls together to give it!" —AAC member Andrew Schurr 46 | American Alpine Club

Spend a week climbing and dining in the country’s most iconic climbing destination, Yosemite Valley, with climbers from every corner of the globe. ICM participants have the opportunity to participate in clinics and conservation projects, all while sharing a rope with partners from around the world. For information on how to apply, visit 2017 Dates: Oct. 8–14

Hueco Rock Rodeo The Hueco Rock Rodeo is an annual tradition that will turn 25 years old in 2018. Throughout the years, this competition has been a staple for boulderers all over the world to test their mettle amongst some of the best boulder problems in the United States. The Club is proud to host and organize this annual tradition at Hueco Tanks. The Rodeo is a two-day competition for climbers of every age and experience level. In the evenings, competitors gather at the AAC's Hueco Rock Ranch for cold beverages, food, vendor village—and a wildly popular Saturday night after party that includes a dyno comp, DJ, and legendary bonfire. Rodeo staff work closely with Hueco Tanks State Park and Historic Site and Climbers of Hueco Tanks Coalition to ensure that fun times are hand-in-hand with park regulations and respect to this historic and delicate desert area. 2018 Date: Feb. TBA

Annual Benefit Dinner The Annual Benefit Dinner is the Club’s largest, most anticipated event of the year. Each year, the packed weekend schedule includes a Friday Night Climbers’ Gathering and Saturday morning panels and presentations leading up to the main event. The 2017 Dinner, sponsored by The North Face, was located in Seattle, WA and gave over 550 guests the chance to rub shoulders with climbing legends, enjoy fine dining, and celebrate the year’s greatest climbing achievements. The 2018 dinner will celebrate the 40th anniversary of the first American summit of K2 and will take place in Boston, MA.

Section Dinners, Chapter Gatherings, and More

Stay up to date on other local happenings—including section dinners, presentations, movie nights, and more—by keeping an eye on your section emails and the AAC events calendar at

2018 Date: Feb. TBA

a Post climbing party shenanigans in the heart of Bishop during the 2016 Fall Highball. AAC member Jeff Rueppel

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Benefits of Membership AAC members enjoy discounts on gear, lodging, gym memberships, guide services, and more.* For the most up-to-date list of discounts, as well as information on how to redeem each discount, log in to your profile at and visit the members-only discount section.

Featured Discounts*

20% off

30% off

15% off, with restrictions

PMS 647c c100 m56 y0 k23 r0 g86 b149

48% off

40% off

40% off

25% off

25% off

40% off 90% BLACK

100% WHITE

20% off

20% off

20% off

20% off

$15 off

$10 off

10% off

Additional Discounts* Alpina Asana Big Agnes Black Diamond apparel BlueCosmo Satellite Communications Dry Ice Tools

Feathered Friends Gneiss Apparel Supply Co. Himali Huckberry Insta-Bed Kelty

Lowe Alpine Mountain Gear Mountain Tools NEMO Equipment Rack Attack Sharp End Publishing Slumberjack

Top of the World Books Ultimate Direction Vertical Medicine Resources Vigilante Wenzel Y&Y Belay Glasses

*Gear discounts are subject to change and restrictions may apply. Discount percentages listed are approximations and may not apply to every product. Though we try to provide you with accurate information, we cannot guarantee you will receive the discount rates listed here or on our website.

In-Store Discounts* Feathered Friends Seattle, WA

Second Ascent Seattle, WA

Down Wind Sports Marquette, MI

Rock and Snow New Paltz, NY

GreenLife Adventure Sports Norfolk, VA and Glen Allen, VA

Ibex Boston, MA location only

The Mountain Shop Portland, OR

Patagonia New York, NY, Boulder, CO, and Denver, CO locations only

Rockwerx Barre, MA

Anvil Crash Pad Rentals Chattanooga, TN and Atlanta, GA AAC members also have access to discounts on over 300 more brands through To join the AAC’s Experticity team, follow the instructions detailed on the Gear Discounts page of your online profile at

Magazine Discounts*

1 year, 4 issues: $29.95 2 years, 8 issues: $54.95 48 | American Alpine Club

1 year, 8 issues: $9.95

1 year, 10 issues: $12.95

1 year, 2 issues: $13.98

Gym Discounts* Boston Rock Gym Woburn, MA Initiation fee waived. $50/month with no contract. Intro to Climbing and Learn to Lead: $25. Boulderdash Indoor Rock Climbing Thousand Oaks, CA Initiation fee waived. Boulder Rock Club Boulder, CO $59/month on ARB. $645/year. Brooklyn Boulders Brooklyn, NY; Long Island City, NY; Chicago, IL; Somerville, MA Initiation fee waived. 15% off membership. $25 day pass with gear. Climb Nashville Nashville, TN 10% off membership. The Crag at Cool Springs Franklin, TN 10% off day pass. Earth Treks Climbing Centers Columbia, MD; Timonium, MD; Rockville, MD; Golden, CO 50% off initiation fee. Edgeworks Climbing Gym Tacoma, WA 50% off initiation fee. 10% off membership. Evolution Rock & Fitness Concord, NH 15% off three-month pass. Flagstaff Climbing Center Flagstaff, AZ 50% off initiation fee. Granite Arch Climbing Center Rancho Cordova, CA $2 off day pass. $45 monthly pass. The Gravity Vault Upper Saddle River, NJ; Chatham, NJ; Middletown, NJ 10% off day pass. Green Mountain Rock Climbing Center Rutland, VT; Hartland, VT 10% off annual pass. 10% off monthly pass. $10 day pass. 10% off guided trips.

Hangar 18 Hawthorne, CA; Riverside, CA; Upland, CA $10 day pass. $33 monthly pass. High Point Climbing and Fitness Chattanooga, TN $2 off adult day pass. Mesa Rim Climbing and Fitness Centers San Diego, CA; Reno, NV (coming soon) Initiation fee waived. MetroRock Rock Climbing Centers Boston, MA; Newburyport, MA; Essex, VT; Brooklyn, NY (coming soon) Initiation fee waived. $14 day pass. New Jersey Rock Gym Fairfield, NJ 10% off day pass. Peak Experiences Midlothian, VA $60 monthly membership. Petra Cliffs Burlington, VT Initiation fee waived. 20% off monthly pass. 20% off day pass. First visit free. Phoenix Rock Gym Tempe, AZ 10% off two-week pass. 10% monthly pass. 10% off quarterly pass. 10% off semiannual pass. 10% off annual pass. Planet Granite Belmont, CA; San Francisco, CA; Sunnyvale; CA Initiation fee waived. Rock Fitness Gym Wildomar, CA Initiation fee waived. 20% off monthly membership. 20% off day pass.

Salt Pump Climbing Company Scarborough, ME 10% off day pass. 10% off punch cards. 10% off membership. Sanctuary Rock Gym Sand City, CA $12 day pass. $40 monthly pass. Seattle Bouldering Project Seattle, WA 10% off monthly membership. $10 day pass during Send and Social events. Sender One Climbing Santa Ana, CA 80% off initiation fee. Solid Rock Gym San Marcos, CA; San Diego, CA; Poway, CA Initiation fee waived when you pay two months upfront. $13 day pass. Stone Summit Atlanta, GA; Kennesaw, GA 10% off all options. Tennessee Bouldering Authority Chattanooga, TN 10% off membership. Threshold Climbing and Fitness Gym Riverside, CA Initiation fee waived. $5 day pass. Touchstone Climbing & Fitness San Francisco, CA; Berkeley, CA; Sacramento, CA; Concord, CA; Oakland, CA; Fresno, CA; San Jose, CA 75% off initiation fee. Urban Rocks Chattanooga, TN 10% off membership.

Rocknasium Davis, CA $12 day pass. $34 monthly pass. $374 annual pass.

Vertical World Seattle, WA; Redmond, WA; Lynnwood, WA (coming soon) Initiation fee waived.

Rock’n & Jam’n Thornton, CO; Centennial, CO 10% off day pass. 10% off monthly pass. 10% off paid-in-full memberships.

Vital Climbing Gym Carlsbad, CA; Murrieta, CA; Bellingham, WA $5 off monthly pass.

Rock Spot Climbing Lincoln, RI; South Kingstown, RI; Boston, MA Initiation fee waived. 10% off annual pass. $12 day pass. $18 day pass with gear.

Warehouse Rock Gym Olympia, WA 10% off membership. 10% off day pass.

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a Making dinner in the desert, at the Hueco Rock Ranch. AAC member Karuna Sah Guide Service Discounts* The AAC partners with the following guide services to offer discounts on instruction and guided trips both in the U.S. and abroad: Alaska Mountain Guides and Climbing School Alaska Mountaineering School Alpine Ascents International Alpine Skills International Alpine World Ascents American Alpine Institute Chicks with Picks The Climbing Life Guides Colorado Mountain School Denver Mountain Guiding

Devil’s Lake Climbing Guides Erratic Rock Exum Mountain Guides Fox Mountain Guides High Peaks Mountain Guides International Mountain Guides Jackson Hole Mountain Guides Kingdom Adventures Mountain Guides Longleaf Wilderness Medicine Mountain Gurus

Mountain Madness New River Mountain Guides Northeast Mountaineering Northwest Alpine Guides San Juan Mountain Guides Southwest Adventure Guides Thomson Kilimanjaro Treks & Wildlife Safaris Vertical Medicine Resources

For specifics on discounts offered and more information on the guide services that support us, visit

Lodging Discounts* AAC members enjoy discounted rates at the following lodging establishments: DOMESTIC Hans’s Basecamp Yosemite National Park, CA

The Keene Farm Adirondack Forest Reserve near Keene, NY

Appalachian Mountain Club Huts and Lodges Various locations, NH, ME, NJ

Mazama Lodge Mt. Hood, OR

The Notch Hostel North Woodstock, NH High Peaks Mountain Guides Guides’ House Lake Placid, NY

The Crash Pad Chattanooga, TN Wexler Hut Seneca Rocks, WV

Bentwood Inn Wilson, WY The Alpine House Jackson, WY Devils Tower Lodge Devils Tower, WY Double Diamond X Ranch Cody, WY

Hotel Engine Up to 60% off accommodations nationwide using INTERNATIONAL Sorcerer Lodge Golden, British Columbia, Canada Refugio Cochamo Cochamo, Chile

Turpin Meadow Ranch Moran, WY

For more information on specific discounts, visit

Huts Discounts* AAC members enjoy discounted access at huts owned and operated by alpine clubs around the globe, including the UIAA huts in Europe, the New Zealand Alpine Club’s huts, and the Alpine Club of Canada’s huts. AAC members are automatically eligible for the same rate as NZAC and ACC members at most huts in New Zealand and Canada; AAC members may choose to purchase a hut stamp for UIAA huts in Europe, where rates vary by country. To learn how to purchase hut upgrades, visit *Discounts are subject to change and restrictions may apply. Discount percentages listed are approximations and may not apply to every product. Though we try to provide you with accurate information, we cannot guarantee you will receive the discount rates listed here or on our website. 50 | American Alpine Club

AAC Lodging

a Molly Kohler-Rennie on Babyface (V7) at the 2017 Hueco Rock Rodeo. AAC member Merrick Ales

The AAC is committed to building and maintaining facilities for climbers in popular climbing destinations across the country. Members enjoy reduced rates at these facilities. For information on additional lodging options, visit

Grand Teton Climbers’ Ranch Moose, WY Located just south of Jenny Lake and four miles north of Park Headquarters, the GTCR offers the most affordable and accessible lodging for climbers visiting Grand Teton National Park. Book your stay at

New River Gorge Campground Fayetteville, WV The AAC campground at the New River Gorge resides on a 40-acre parcel adjacent to National Park land and within walking distance of popular crags. Book your stay at

Gunks Campground Gardiner, NY The AAC’s newest campground, located a short walk from the Trapps and Near Trapps, includes 50 drive-in and walk-in campsites for visiting climbers. Book your stay at gunks-campground.

Snowbird Hut Talkeetna Range, AK The Alaska Section’s Snowbird Hut is beautifully situated in the Talkeetna Mountains on the northern edge of the Snowbird Glacier. The hut is open to the public at no cost. For more information, visit

Hueco Rock Ranch El Paso, TX Located just three miles from Hueco Tanks, the Ranch offers climbers both bunk-style accommodations and tent sites nearby some of the best bouldering on the planet. Book your stay at Guidebook to Membership | 51

a AAC member Andrew Bradberry Rescue AAC members are automatically eligible for $12,500 of total rescue benefits. Step past the trailhead and you have coverage for any human-powered, land-based activity. Trailhead Rescue QQ $7,500 global coverage QQ No elevation restriction QQ To use the Trailhead Rescue Benefit, members must call Global Rescue at (617) 459-4200 as soon as possible during an emergency Domestic Rescue Benefit QQ $5,000 reimbursement for out-of-pocket rescue expenses within the U.S. only—Canada and Mexico excluded QQ File a claim within 30 days of rescue by emailing claims@ or calling (303) 384-0110 QQ Reimbursement subject to verification and approval Rescues in 2016 In 2016, 33 members were rescued thanks to the Trailhead Rescue Benefit. Upgrade Planning to climb internationally? We recommend upgrading to a full Global Rescue membership at a 5% discount. Learn more at or call 1-800-381-9571.

Publications Print editions of the American Alpine Journal and Accidents in North American Climbing are delivered each summer as part of your membership. Digital copies of the books are available anytime through your online profile. To search any article ever published in the AAJ or Accidents, or to share your own story, visit American Alpine Journal Published annually since 1929, the 384-page AAJ documents mountain exploration and the world’s most significant first ascents. With hundreds of first-person reports and photos, the AAJ provides an essential historical record and a feast of inspiration. Accidents in North American Climbing Accidents in North American Climbing is a 128-page book that documents notable climbing and ski mountaineering accidents each year. In this keystone of the Club’s educational mission, climbers, rangers, rescue professionals, and editors analyze what went wrong so you can learn from others’ mistakes. 52 | American Alpine Club

The Sharp End Podcast POWERED BY: In 2016, Accidents launched the Sharp End podcast, hosted by Ashley Saupe and presented by Mammut. Each month, Ashley interviews a climber, ranger, or rescuer for stories about serious climbing and skiing accidents. Find the Sharp End wherever you listen to podcasts. Also see page 18 for a Q&A with Ashley about her creative process and what she’s learned.

Library The Henry S. Hall Jr. American Alpine Club Library provides you with all the information you could ever want on mountain culture, history, and climbing routes. Our staff and volunteers are happy to assist with research and trip planning in person or electronically. Our home base in Golden, CO houses more than 50,000 books and videos, plus countless archives and is one of the world’s finest mountain collections. Contact for information. Bookmail AAC members can borrow up to 10 items (5 max audiovisual items) at a time for 35 days. Books may be checked out online and sent anywhere in the U.S. You pay only for return shipping. Use our online Guidebook Finder map to check out the guidebook you need for your next trip at or search the full catalog at Explore Explore is a community resource that shares the AAC’s special and digital collections online and organizes them into exhibits, from the history of the Yeti to the story of the 1966 American Antarctic Mountaineering Expedition. Check out the exhibits at

Museum A joint venture of the American Alpine Club and Colorado Mountain Club, the Bradford Washburn American Mountaineering Museum in Golden, CO, is the only museum in the U.S. dedicated exclusively to mountaineering and rock climbing. The museum hosts rotating exhibits and showcases a scale model of Mt. Everest, the ice axe Pete Schoening used to save five falling climbers on K2 in 1953, and equipment from the first American ascent of Mt. Everest. Stop by to browse at your leisure, or join us for one of our monthly happy hours. For information, visit

Conservation and Advocacy Since its founding in 1902, the American Alpine Club has been a force in helping safeguard our country’s wild landscapes and natural treasures on the federal, state, and local levels. We believe that as climbers, we bear the important responsibility of protecting and stewarding the places we climb. In addition to advocating for the vertical frontier, the Club is committed to ensuring that guides and organizations that teach climbing can access the permits they need to facilitate climbing experiences on public lands. As members of the Coalition for Outdoor Access, we are partnering with guides, outdoor brands, conservation groups, and the U.S. Forest Service to simplify and streamline the permitting process.

As climbers, we have a unique connection to the land, and as a result, are effective and important advocates. Participation by climbers in our letter-writing campaigns and grassroots efforts have had a significant and positive impact on public lands protection, conservation, and sound climbing-management policy. Our successes in 2016 on the federal, state, and local levels show us that together we're stronger—thank you for your participation. For more information, visit


a AAC member Stephen Gosling "In today's political climate, the voices of rock climbers need to be heard now more than ever. Policy is determined by those who show up and I was honored and proud to join the American Alpine Club and Access Fund in defending our public lands at the Climb the Hill event in Washington, DC." —AAC member Libby Sauter

a AAC volunteers repair and improve the access trail into the Happy's to give back to the community. An integral part of the Bishop Highball. AAC member Jeff Rueppel

Education The AAC has been at the leading edge of climbing education since we began publishing Accidents in North American Climbing in 1948. Today our education team is focused on three objectives:

UIAA, much of our work involves climbing instructor trainings and credentials for volunteer educators and mentors around the country.

1. Educate through Media. We publish definitive educational resources via our “Know the Ropes” department in Accidents in North American Climbing, digitally via our Know the Ropes Index, and through written and video contributions to print and digital media globally. 2. Educate through Outreach. We host educational clinics at Craggin' Classic events around the country, convene writers and educators to advance knowledge, and collaborate with gyms and other providers on national standards (see Universal Belay Program, below). 3. Educate our Educators. We are a national resource for American climber educators. As a member association of the

Universal Belay Program The AAC’s Universal Belay Program is designed to ensure you get a safe catch. We are currently working with the UIAA and institutions nationally to establish common language and safety standards that will reduce accidents. We have already begun disseminating this information through videos and articles, and soon, you will be able to take the AAC Universal Belay Standard course at your local gym, club, school, or course provider. Upon completion, you will receive a Universal Belay Certificate that will give you and your partners confidence in your ability to belay safely. Videos are available at

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Grants Each year, the AAC gives over $100,000 toward climbing, conservation, and research grants to help you realize your climbing dreams and to protect the places we play. For more information about each grant, including application deadlines and funds available, visit CLIMBING GRANTS Live Your Dream Grant POWERED BY: All climbers have dreams. Let us help you live yours. The Live Your Dream grant is designed to help you, the everyday adventurer, take your abilities to the next level. Receive $200–$1,000 of seed funding to jumpstart your next excursion.

of global climber impacts, and support and improve the health and sustainability of mountain environments and habitats. AAC Research Grants are powered by the Alliance for Sustainable Energy and supported by the following endowments: Lara-Karena Bitenieks Kellogg Memorial Fund, Scott Fischer Memorial Fund, Arthur K. Gilkey Memorial Fund, and the Bedayn Research Fund.

Cutting Edge Grant Supports advanced, seasoned climbers undertaking high-level climbing and mountaineering objectives in remote areas, including unclimbed peaks, difficult new routes, first free ascents, or similar pursuits. Grant awards range from $5,000 to $15,000. The Cutting Edge Grant is supported in part through a partnership with Global Rescue. Mountaineering Fellowship Grant Funds American climbers age 25 and younger to into remote areas and seek out difficult climbs. Zack Martin Breaking Barriers Grant A dual-purpose grant that funds projects with a humanitarian primary objective and a secondary objective involving climbing. Copp-Dash Inspire Award Designed for small teams that plan to document and share their ascents, primarily on unclimbed objectives in distant ranges, requiring a high level of skill and commitment. McNeill-Nott Award Funds amateurs exploring new routes or unclimbed peaks with small, lightweight teams. CONSERVATION GRANTS Cornerstone Conservation Grant POWERED BY: Funds infrastructure projects spearheaded by local climbing organizations that protect and conserve climbing areas in the United States. Anchor Replacement Fund Launched in 2015, in partnership with the Access Fund, to address the growing concerns of anchor failure and the access issues that could result from these incidents. Awarded to local climbing organizations and rebolting groups to keep our crags safe. Research Grants AAC Research Grants support scientific endeavors in mountains and crags around the world. We fund projects that contribute vital knowledge of our climbing environment, enrich our understanding 54 | American Alpine Club

"AAC sets itself apart as an organization that has a longterm vision for the future needs of climbers. Their research programs help us better understand complex dynamics in climbing environments—the magical places that inspire us to breathe deep, work hard, and make lifelong friends. Last summer the AAC supported me and fellow researcher Alana Wilson as we worked through the mountains of Kyrgyzstan to tease out how the rivers draining the massive snow and ice systems of the remote Tien Shan range may change in the context of warming temperatures. The rivers are fed by the snow slopes and ice falls that we climb up, they carve the mountain slopes we traverse, and they provide water for mountain people with whom we interact. The AAC understands that, as climbers, we have a responsibility to be stewards of the landscapes that inspire us, and we have a role to play in protecting them going forward. This is real leadership, and it’s one of many reasons why the club is worthy of every climber’s support."


—AAC member Alice Hill

2016 Grant Recipients a Austin Porzak traverses the Broadway ledge on Longs Peak. Bill Johnsmiller



Amy Bannon Nicholas Bourdon Bradford Buter John Greer Tad McCrea Vitaliy Musiyenko Bernadette Regan Buck Yedor

Colten Moore Andrew Clift Jane Horth Sean Buehler Lewis Billingsley Don Wargowsky Joshua Cronk Clayton Ernst Erin Lynch Morgan Smith




Samuel Bedell Cat Coe Lawrence Davis Nicole Gaines Mary Gianotti Nate Goodwin Aaron Hanson Emily E. Johnston Tiffany Larson Kimberley Palka Lauren Mork Greg Sievers Chris Simmons Mike Taormina Kelly Thomas Szu-ting Yi


Ben Ammon James Bachhuber Eleanor Barber Mario Davidson Taylor Dickinson Tom Forestieri John Kelley Mallory Lambert Mark Pugliese Marc Ripperger Zachary Snavely Brian Sparks

Alissa Doherty Heather Hudson Ethan Berman Andrew Blease Devin Farkas Michael Posner James Voorhis


Brian Barwatt Amanda Ellis Josh Kraft Alex Marine Kyle Sox


MCNEILL-NOTT AWARD Jake Stuckey Jimmy Voorhis

COPP-DASH INSPIRE AWARD Christopher Gibisch Craig Muderlak Whitney Clark Zach Clanton

MOUNTAINEERING FELLOWSHIP Deni Murray Josh Edwards Harrison Johnson Lance Colley Dylan Cousins Jessica Keil Tess Ferguson Austen Beason Ben Ammon Brett Myers Chance Ronemus Claudia Cedfeldt David Fay Hayden Jamieson Nathan Goodwin Oliver Shaw

RESEARCH GRANTS Trevor Bloom Grant Lipman Patrick Wright Robin Thomas Tim Graham Kristin Schild

ZACK MARTIN BREAKING BARRIERS Lilliana Libecki Danika Gilberts



RESEARCH GRANTS Trevor Bloom Grant Lipman Patrick Wright Robin Thomas Tim Graham Kristin Schild


Red River Gorge Climbers’ Coalition AAC Richmond Chapter Mid Atlantic Climbers Southeastern Climbers Coalition Salt Lake Climbers Alliance Upper Peninsula Climbers Coalition Washington Climbers Coalition Levitation 49 Ohio Climbers Coalition South Central Pennsylvania Climbers Washington’s National Park Fund Rumney Climber’s Association Climbing Stewards


Arkansas Climbers Coalition Southwest Virginia Climbers Coalition Western Massachusetts Climbers’ Coalition Boise Climbers Alliance Ohio Climber’s Coalition Southern Idaho Climbers Coalition Illinois Climber’s Association New River Alliance of Climbers Carolina Climbers Coalition Minnesota Climbers Association Climbing Association of Southern Arizona Southern Utah Climbers' Association Friends of Joshua Tree Friends of Pinnacles Salt Lake Climbers Alliance

Guidebook to Membership | 55

2016 Great Ranges Fellowship $10,000+ Eiger Fellow

Anonymous (2) Brooks-Matthews Foundation

Yvon & Malinda Chouinard Kevin Duncan

Timothy Forbes Clark L. Gerhardt Jr. Robert Hyman & Deb Atwood

Lou Kasischke Ryan Maitland Craig McKibben & Sarah Merner

Mark & Teresa Richey Carey Roberts

Cody J Smith Doug & Maggie Walker

Richard Salisbury Steve & Paula Mae Schwartz Bill & Barbara Straka Duncan Stuart

Steven J. Swenson & Ann Dalton Larry True & Linda Brown

$5,000-$9,999 Alpamayo Fellow

Alpenglow Foundation Edmund and Betsy Cabot Foundation Phil Duff

Jim Edwards & Michelle Mass Chuck & Lisa Fleischman Charlotte Fox

Eiichi Fukushima Gerald E. Gallwas Rocky Henderson Mark Kroese Phil Lakin Jr.

David Landman George H. Lowe III Garry Menzel Miriam Nelson Naoe Sakashita

$2,500-$4,999 Robson Fellow

Lisa Abbott Jon Anderson Vaclav E. Benes Gordon A. Benner, M.D. Audrey Borisov Tanya Bradby & Martin Slovacek Jim Collins

The Duckworth Family Ken Ehrhart Dan A. Emmett Philip Erard Christopher Flory Bruce Franks James & Franziska Garrett David V. Goeddel

Wayne & Cynthia Griffin Richard E. Hoffman, M.D. Scott Holder Thomas F. Hornbein, M.D. Thomas C. Janson Cristin Julian Paul Lego Randy Luskey

Anthony & Carolyn Mansfield Danny McCracken Peter & Kathleen Metcalf Matt Ochs John A. Rehmer Wolf Riehle David Riggs

Darcy Ryan Lauren Sigman Oliver Stauffer Theodore P. Streibert Joshua Swidler Geoffrey C. Tabin, M.D. Jack Tracy

Paul Morrow Mie Nakane Kit Natland Nathan Nicholas Vanessa O’Brien Sean Obrien Bob Palais John Parsons Adam & Merritt Patridge Charles Peck Brian Peters Will Philips Mark Powers Phil Powers & Sarah Pierce Louis Reichardt John D. Reppy Jim Rickards Michael Riley David Robertson Joel P. Robinson Arthur Rock John Rudolph Jeffrey L. Rueppel David Ryon, M.D. Vik Sahney Brian Salomaki Jeb Sanford Janet Schlindwein Mark Schoening

Kristiann Schoening Stephen Schofield Raymond VJ Schrag Stephen Scofield George Shaw John Sirois George N. Smith Brian Sohn Katherine Song Rob & Jennifer Stephenson Bob Street John Sykes Jack & Pat Tackle Crystal Tan Steve & Krista Howard David Thoenen Erwin Thomet Ben Toews John Townsend Dieter H. von Hennig Jeff S. Wagener, M.D. Mark D. Wilford Rich Wilsey Doug Wilson Todd Winzenried Jason Wolfe Fred Wolfe Keegan Young Rob Ziegler

$1,000-$2,499 Teewinot Fellow

Anonymous Jonah Adelman Warren Adelman Mark Aiston Glen Anders Santiago Arteaga James Balog Arthur Barnes Gail O. Bates Doug & Sandy Beall Sumit Bhardwaj Craig & Kathy Blockwick Marty Brigham Paul Brunner & Coleen Curry Deanne Buck Thomas C. Burch William A. Burd Mitch Campbell R.J. Campbell Jay Cassell Dan Cohen Jeffrey Cohen Kevin Cooney John Costello Frederick P. Couper Beckie & Dave Covill Matt & Charlotte Culberson Brittany Cupp 56 | American Alpine Club

John Davidge & Deborah Lott Elizabeth & Joseph Davidson Scott Davis Walter P. Dembitsky, M.D. Stan & Judy Dempsey Kit DesLauriers Ed Diffendal John Donlou Richard & Martha Draves Jesse Dwyer Charles Eilers Stuart H. Ellison Terrence J. English Drew Fink Chas Fisher Keith Fleischman Philip Francis James A. Frank Jim Frush Ken & Rebecca Gart Neil Gehrels Marilyn Geninatti Michael & Kristin Gibbons Bill Givens Charles Goldman Robert Hall James Halle Aaron Hammond Andre Haroche

Roger Hartl Leslie Hassen Ryan Hill Scot T. Hillman Mark K. Hingston Michael Hodges Marley & Jennifer Hodgson Todd Hoffman James Holmes Alex Intermill Steve & Michelle Jones Diane Kearns Arthur Kearns William Kilpatrick, M.D. Joel G. Kinney Erik Lambert Jon Leavitt Michael L. Lederer William E. Long Evan T. Lukow Chris Lynch Brent V. Manning Edwards Matthews George McCown Dan McCoy Brad McQueen Scott Milliman Barrett Morgan Halsted “Hacksaw” Morris

2016 Donors $500-$999 Colorado School of Mines David Anderson Eric Anderson Peter Angood Conrad Anker Archer Law Offices Luis Benitez Sydney Bernard-Hogling Virginia Boucher Wesley Brown Jerry Buck Tina Bullitt Audrey Cadwallader Tommy Caldwell Jeffrey Campbell Jerome Chin James Collins Brian Dannemann Kim Desrosiers Melvyn Douglas Andrew Edstrom Dave Giacomin Tim Harvell John Heilprin Jonathan Hough Bradford Johnston Frank Knowlton Ron and Yael Kohavi Marnie Levine Matt Lloyd Jamie Logan Edward Matthews John G. McCall M.D. Alan Nagel Kathy Parker Marshall Peterson Katie Ramage Jodi Richard Stephen Richards John Sheu Kathryn Shirley Jay Smith John Stauffer Darren Szerdy Mark Tuller John Tunheim Alexander Uy Edward Vervoort Virginia Burns Private Charitable Foundation Carolyn Wallace Ellie Weihenmayer James Williams Timothy Wilt Jessica Worley John Young Alina Zagaytova $200-$499 Larry Achenbach Peter Ackroyd Carol Akerson

Brian Aldrich Frank Alling Carlos Alvarez Barrett Amos Harvey Anderson Christopher Anthony Janet B Wilkinson Matt Baldelli Henry Bass John Beahrs Hugh Behling Manfred Berretz Cameron Bigge Cherie Blackburn Steve Boes Bill Bohn Tom Bowker Jane Bowman Robert M. Branch Keith Brenneman Kim Brenneman Mark Butler Robert Buzzard Strawn Cathcart Mark Chagnon Juliana Chen Nicholas Chope William Combs William Cox Malcolm Daly Emily Davis William Davis Justinian Davis Tony Decaneas Diana Dee Megan Delehanty Sequoia DiAngelo Sasha DiGiulian Mark Dryden David Dugdale Richard Edge Charles Eiriksson Phil Ensign Sarah Estill Erik Fabricius-Olsen Martha Feagin Carla Firey John Fisher ARCS Foundation Paul Frantz Craig Fukushima Jeff Gelles Pete Gilbert Michael Gilliland Brian Glenn Frederick Glover Kevin Goldstein Larry Graham Gordon Green Bill Gunnar Jim Hagar Rick Hanheide Andrew Harmon

Daniel Hartman Daniel Hassell Paul Hayes Giles Healey Jack Heffernan Matthew Heimermann Naomi Helbling Peter Hermges John Hewett Peter Hodge Robert Hoffman Vickie Hormuth Tony Horton Krista Howard Rob Hutchinson Katherine C. Ives Shane Jones Timothy Jursak Michael Kidder Chris Kurtz Sarah & Will Lana Susan Lancelotta Ron & Katharine Lang Christopher Lang Vincent Lee David Lee Joyce Lee Dave Lonack Donald Lund Dougald MacDonald Kevin Mahoney Tim Maly Kent Marshall Rebecca Martin Tracy Martin Nat Matthews Mary Ann Matthews James McCarthy C. Wayne McIlwraith Robert McKay Richard Meinig Stuart Michener Joel Mikle Janet Miller Amer Mneimneh Chris Monz Elizabeth Moran Paul Muscat Kenneth Nolan Hilaree O'Neill Kenny OConnell Justin Paulhamus Jon Pedder Allen Peery David Peterson Christopher Petrini Stephen Pomerance Melissa And Jim Prager E. Prugh Andrew Puhl Bonnie Pullen Greg Pursell Bill Randolph

James Ratliff Dorothea Reilly Robert Richardson John Richardson Chris Robertson David Rothberg John Rupley James Rusk Paul Sanford Jim Schatz Andreas Schmidt James Schroeder Mark Schumacher Friedel Schunk Fred Schwarzenbach Samuel Silverstein M.D. James Simpson Elizabeth Sloss Jim Small Kirk Smith Rock Snow Brian Stafford Mark Stein Ron Stradiotto Scott Strong Mackenzie Sullivan Nick Temali Charles Toner Wayne Goss and Marie Tripp Charlotte Unger Jolene Unsoeld James Valentine Royce Van Evera Colby VanDenburg Mark Vermeal Walter Wadlow Michael Walenta Peter Ward Jim Wagon and Nancy Cohen Alexander Wildman John Williams Robert Williams Corey Winstead Ainsley Woolridge Graham Zimmerman $100-$199 Anonymous (3) Robert Abramowitz Nathan Allen Lori Allen Jesse Amundsen Mark Anderson Burton Angrist Richard Arnold Adrian Arroyo William Atkinson Chuck Aude Russ Austin Mia Axon Darvin Ayre

Jonathan Bachman Fran Bagenal Nancy Baker John Bank Stacy Bare Robert Baribeau Frederick Barth Christopher Bassett Kenneth & Kelly Bayne Christopher Beals John Berg John Berry John Bird Mel Blackwell Judith Bolick Richard Booth Sharon Bovie Bob Box Gillian Bradley Kevin Brenneman Robin Brown Jared Brown Lynn Buchanan Warren Bucher Jake Burkhead Michael Burns Gary Butcher Ailie Byers Angel Canales J. Carmoreau Hatier Gina Carter Kristan Carver Tim Casey Lori Chandler Charles Chapman Donny Chau Olivia Chelko-Long Han Chen Rue Chitwood Stephen Chiu Michael Claes Nicholas Clifford Dale Coddington Jeremy Collins Kevin Cooper Kelly Cordes David Coward Caspar Cronk Spencer Crouch Sally Crowley Lillian Cuthbert Edward Dabrea Karen Daubert Lawrence Dauelsberg Mike Davis Matthew Davis Robert DeBirk Michael Declerck Tom Degenhardt Stephen DenHartog Pierre Dery Christine Di Lapi Tom Dickey Guidebook to Membership | 57

Richard Dietz Jennifer Donaldson David Dornan Christopher Downs Daniel Drage Theresa Dudley Cynthia Dugger Julie Dunn Steve Durnal Travis Dustin David Dyess Jon Ehlinger Maria Enrione Michele Evans Janson Evans Job Faber Daniel Fink Gabriel Flanders Casey Flynn Frederick Fonner Greg French Gregory Frux Paul Gagner David Gainsboro Joseph Galbraith Janine Gates Mike Gaunt Stephen Geremia Paul Gill John Gill Aaron Glasenapp Jocelyn Glidden Amy Godfrey Steven Goryl Garrett Gossett Roy Goudy Ian Gourley Keith Gover Cathy Grams Arno Granados Matthew Gray Robert Graziano Eric Green Rodney Green

Evan Green John Gregory William Guelcher Charles Gunn Keith Hadley Matthew Hale Jeff Hanks Greg Hanson Thomas Harper Mike Harris Janet Harvey Michael Heathfield Marjean Heisler Franz Helfenstein Taylor Henderson Daniel Hildreth William Hodgman Joshua Hohner Collin Holt Peter Horan Kristen Hughes Gerald Hunt Noel Hurd Lisa Huston Barry Hutten Bernard Hylands Dale Jamieson Daniel Jarosz Stephen Johnson Roger Johnson Brad Johnson Ben Johnson Arthur Johnson J Jones Josh Josten Christopher Kantarjiev Dale Katzenberg Diane Kay Travis Kemp Kristopher Klein Stephen Knapp Daniel Kobal Lacy Konieczka John Korfmacher

Alfred Kormesser & Kimberly Dukes Al Koury David Krashes Brian Kurotsuchi Gregory La Val Christopher Lane Ellen Lapham Ronald Larsen John Larson Andrea Laue Peter Law Kevin Lawlor Monte Lehmkuhler Carl Lehner Michael Lewer Neal Lischner Benjamin Lough Eric Lundgren Andy Lutz Ross Macfarlane Kristin Machnick Cameron Maier Jerry Mandello Al Marchiando Frank Marin Wallace Martindale Brian Marts James Mathis David Matthys Paul Maxwell William Mayers Peter McCarthy Michael McCormick Michael McCormick Sally McCoy April McCoy John McCue Karen McDivitt Gary McElvany Elizabeth McNichols Ralph Medema John Mercer Mary Messal

Jack Middleton Jack Miller Alison Miyasaki Gary Moe Matthew Moreschi David Morgan David Morrison Jack Morrison Dave Nelson Jared Nelson Tim Newcome Kenzie Novak Mark Novak William Oliver Beth Olson Christine Marie Olson Irving Oppenheim Chad Ovel Todd Paige Adrian Parker Mike Patz Edward Pavelchek Gail Pavlich Jill Perry Michael Personick Scott Petersen Jeff Pickering Ramsay Pierce Ex Pow-anpongkul Wayne Prender Stephen Preston Noelle Price Jerry Radinoff Norman Rasmussen Alexander Read Ted Regan Drummond Rennie Mona Reynolds Monica Reynolds William Ricci Justin Rich Court Richards Jim Richards Sherry Richardson

Natalia Richey John Rigney Barbara Roach Brady Robinson Arnold Robson Scott Robson Jim Rodman Ronald Rogers Richard Rollins Dennis Roscetti Charles Roskosz Kimberly Ross Austin Roth Doug Rothe Eric Rueth Rebecca Schild Robert Schoene Christopher Schroeder Brian Schultz Joshua Scott Connie Self Nikita Shah Paul Sibley David Silsbee David Silverstein Patricia Simpson Roger Singer David Skyer Dan Slack Quade Smith James Sneeringer Dan Snyder ByWater Solutions Rick Spanel Katelyn Stahley Paul Staskowski Jonathan Stone Amanda Stoneham Jonathan Szkil Rowland Tabor John Taylor David Tetley Bruce Theriault & Terry Coble

Peter Thiemann Dan Thompson Alexander Thomson Charles Tint Kathleen Todd Mary Tompkins Alfred Torrisi Thanhvan Tran Claudio Traslavina Clint Treadwell Gary Treml Angelina Trujillo Richard E. Tucker Edward Vaill Jodi Vallante William Van De Graaff Matthew Van Der Graaff Philip Van Schaick John Verrastro Bill Vipond Robert Wadja Andrew Walker William Warrick Malchus Watlington J. Oscar Wells Luke Werner David White Ise Michelle White Roger Wiegand Thomas Wilbanks Lynn Wildnauer Kristin Winter Stephen Wolfe Jon Wolff Rich Wolff Dierdre Wolownick Loren Wood Daniel Woodul Steve Wunsch Heidi Wyle James Zahn Weiyi Zheng Alex Zikakis Michiel Zuidweg

Piolet Society Living Edward Ames Mia Axon Michael A.P. Barker Roger E. Barnes Richard Bence Valclav E. Benes Richard G. Bickel James D. Booth Virginia Boucher Robert W. Burns, Jr. Mark Butler R. J. Campbell

Frank Castle Penny and George Cepull David H. Coward Steven K. Davis Jerry Dixon Robert H. Dodson Phil Erard Ken Ehrhart Keith Martin Fleishman James Frush Clark Gerhardt

Jocelyn C. Glidden & Jim Edwards William C. Guida Judy Hannah William Hauser William & Dana Isherwood Richard M. Jali Mark Kroese Ellen Lapham Don Liska George Lowe III

James P. McCarthy Robert M. McConnell Bob McGown Margot McKee Natalie Merrill Will D. Merrit Gregory Keith Miller Halsted Morris Mike Mortimer Monty & Kaye Music Alison K. Osius Wolf Reihle

Drummond Rennie, M.D. Allen R. Sanderson Willits Sawyer Alan & Jan Scherer Charles Stuart Shimanski Greg Sievers Jim & Marianne Skeen Barbara & William C. Straka Theodore Streibert Steven Swenson & Ann Dalton

Jack Tackle Dr. Brett Taylor Martin Torresquintero Reinhold A. Ulrich Edward E. Vaill Elizabeth White Timothy Wilt Paul R. Winther II Loren M. Wood Michael Yokell

Robert W. Craig James F. Henriot Richard K. Irvin

Henry W. Kendall Reese Martin Polly Prescott

George R. Sainsbury Mell Schoening Lyman Spitzer, Jr.

Bill Stall Robert J. Swanson Bradford Washburn

Paul Wiseman

Deceased Robert Hicks Bates Stanley Boucher Nicholas B. Clinch 58 | American Alpine Club




IN YOUR LOWAs? Since 1923, LOWAs have been essential gear for adventurers as they’ve explored this big, beautiful world. Our new Alpine Pro GTX® is a case in point. It unites a minimalist, low profile design with super-stable, shock-absorbing construction. The result: Superb, close-to-the-ground feel combined with LOWA’s legendary fit and comfort. It’s details like these that go into every LOWA, so that you can get the most out of your time in the mountains.

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a Climbers gather for clinics at the 2016 Shelf Road Craggin' Classic. AAC member Alton Richardson

The American Alpine Club is committed to supporting and inspiring everyone who loves climbing. The work we do has the endorsement, in the form of financial and in-kind support from a multitude of industry leaders. The money we raise each year from our corporate partners is essential to the core operations of the AAC: national and international advocacy and conservation work, publications like the

American Alpine Journal, and events like the International Climbers’ Meet, all of which keep the spirit of climbing thriving. Our Media Partners—magazines, websites, photographers, artists—provide essential in-kind support to improve and spread the AAC’s message. Thank you for supporting those who support us.

Media Partners

Austin Siadak Bedrock Film Works Brian Poon Darby Communications Dirt Myth Photography Drew Smith Cascade Climbers Climbing Zine

Corey Rich/Aurora Photos Fixed Pin Publishing Forest Woodward Gabe DeWitt Garrett Grove Jeff Deikis Jeffrey Rueppel Jeremy Collins

Jim Aikman Jimmy Chin Joe Stock Ken Etzel Luke Allen Humphrey Menno Boermans Mountain Adventure Film Fest

Organizational Partners

60 | American Alpine Club

Nathan Welton Outback Media Sharp End Publishing SNEWS Tegra Nuess Top of the World Books Truc Allen Media Wolverine Publishing

2017 Corporate Partners Summit $100,000

High Camp $50,000

Basecamp $25,000

Patron $15,000

Leader $10,000

Sustainer $2,500 UA T SH



Supporter $1,000

4025 Spencer St. #101 Torrance Beach, CA 90503, USA ph: 424.201.0689 fx: 310.214.2100




Partner $5,000







Member $500

In Kind

Exped • KNS Reps • Kavu • Nite Ize • Organic • Reel Rock Guidebook to Membership | 61



*disc ount a p p l i es t o mo s t i t e m s

a AAC member Michelle Hoffman

Board of Directors [HONORARY OFFICERS] James P. McCarthy Honorary President

[EXECUTIVE COMMITTEE] Matt Culberson President

Theodore (Sam) Streibert Honorary Treasurer

Deanne Buck Vice President Kit DesLauriers Secretary Phil Lakin Treasurer

[DIRECTORS] Term Ending 2018 Mia Axon Stacy Bare Brad Brooks Mark Butler Ken Ehrhart Chas Fisher John Heilprin Lauren Sigman

Term Ending 2019 Philip Duff Kevin Duncan Chuck Fleischman Peter Metcalf Carey Roberts Vik Sahney

Term Ending 2020 David Landman

Staff Phil Powers Chief Executive Officer

Ron Funderburke Education Manager

Bryan Rafferty Boston Membership Coordinator

Nat Matthews Chief Financial Officer & Director of Operations

Vanessa Logsdon Development Coordinator

Bob Baribeau Grand Teton Climbers’ Ranch Manager

Heidi Medema Special Events Manager

Clark Bledsoe Hueco Rock Ranch Manager/Grand Teton Climbers’ Ranch Assistant Manager

Keegan Young Managing Director Craig Hoffman Information Technology Director Vickie Hormuth Development Director Whitney Bradberry Marketing Director Jesse Billingham Lodging Director Katie Sauter Library Director Maria Povec Conservation & Advocacy Director Dougald MacDonald Publications Executive Editor Jeff Deikis Senior Programs Manager, Climbing Grants & Craggin' Classic Series Adam Peters Senior Programs Manager, Volunteer Leadership Program

Shane Johnson Membership Manager Shara Derks Museum Manager Michelle Hoffman Online Store Manager Carol Kotchek Accountant Sam Andree Membership Coordinator Emma Longcope Content Coordinator Allison Albright Digital Assets Librarian Eric Rueth Library Assistant Clifford Simanski New York City Membership Coordinator Matt Ulery San Francisco Membership Coordinator

Blake Bowling Senior Software Engineer

Dakota Walz Denver Membership Coordinator

Sterling Boin Senior Financial Operations Analyst

Truc Allen Seattle Membership Coordinator

John Inzanti Hueco Rock Ranch Assistant Manager Paul Curran Gunks Campground Manager Mark Elsinger Gunks Campground Assistant Manager Natalie Hawley New River Gorge Campground Manager Gene Kistler New River Gorge Steward/Caretaker

Interns Michael Bovee Library Intern Jonathan Oulton Policy Intern Hannah Shea Policy Intern

Guidebook to Membership | 63

. E F I L N A D E #S Club. e h t in Jo . le p peo We are your


Zak Roper manages a top out (dubbed it a V6 R) during rest day shenanigans on top of a little rental car in Rocklands, South Africa. Pictured (from left to right): Edwin Teran, Paul Whicker, Kaelen Williams, Zak Roper, Alvie Walsh, Colton Elsea, Clint Crayton. AAC member Edwin Teran


Photo Š

The newest member of the GRIGRI family.

Don’t panic. The GRIGRI + is equipped with an anti-panic handle, a belay-mode selector for lead and top-rope belaying, stainless steel wear plates, smooth progressive braking, and accommodates single ropes 8.5 -11mm.

Sean Villanueva O’Driscoll turns the corner on a first ascent of Catacomb, which he describes as “one of the wildest wide climbs I have ever done.” Sean and Nicolas Favresse made eight first ascents over the course of their two-month expedition to Baffin Island with Matteo Della Bordella, Matteo De Zaiacomo and Luca Schiera. The lengthy approach (on skis and by sailboat) and remote series of climbs were only half of the team’s epic season. Nicolas Favresse © 2017 Patagonia, Inc.



Profile for American Alpine Club

2017 Guidebook to Membership  

This Is Your Club. We Are The AAC. This is the online version of the Guidebook to Membership—the Club's collaborative yearbook. You are the...

2017 Guidebook to Membership  

This Is Your Club. We Are The AAC. This is the online version of the Guidebook to Membership—the Club's collaborative yearbook. You are the...