It seems that there is a lot of negativity in the media these days. After the ugliness of the last election we wanted to try and figure out a way to bring a little bit of positivity to the world we live in.
Usually, you try to fall back on specific skills you have and hope to channel them into something productive. We spent most of our free time developing our climbing skills - strength, technique and overall knowledge. Climbing is inherently selfish. A person could train for years, invest time and money, give a tremendous effort, and the best result you could hope for is to stand on top of a big rock. Even if you do succeed…who cares?
BCM has given us a way to translate our otherwise useless skills into something that might help somebody else.
Big City Mountaineers transforms the lives of under-served youth through wilderness mentoring expeditions that instill critical life skills. They partner with community-based youth organizations and volunteers who act as mentors in the field to help young people realize their potential. Their curriculum improves self-esteem, responsibility, decision-making abilities and communication skills in close to 1,000 youth annually. BCM has a proven track record of improving young peoples’ lives with:
• Increased likeliness to stay in school
• Reduction in violence
• Reduction in drug use
(Learn more here: www.bigcitymountaineers.org)
We put a lot of thought into how we wanted to fundraise and what climb to do. We felt it needed to be a climb that was worthy of donations; something that would really push us both mentally and physically.
We settled on the route Lurking Fear on iconic El Capitan in Yosemite National Park. Lurking Fear is 2000 vertical feet, broken into 19 pitches (lengths of rope). It was originally climbed in 1976 and is still one of Yosemite's most popular aid routes.
This route will test our current skills, while requiring us to pick up some new ones along the way. I have never done a route that requires aid climbing. Roxanne has never been on a big wall before - she will also need to learn how to haul, jumar (ascend a hanging rope) and clean an aid route. We estimate the route will take 3 days to climb, meaning we will spend at least 2 nights on the wall. It’s a tall order, but one that we feel we can fill if we work hard enough to prepare.
On top of that, it will mark our one year wedding anniversary - what better way to celebrate?
In addition to the effort we will give on the wall, we thought it would be fun to add a little extra spice (and to make sure we don’t take ourselves too seriously) by offering incentives to donate. The idea is to raise as much money as possible to BCM, so the incentives are purely for fun and added challenge!
We will document our training regimen before the climb, and our daily progress, including live updates from the wall (and shoutouts!)
Here’s the rundown:
You Give: $0.50/Pitch ($10 Donation)
You Get: High Fives every time we see you!
You Give:$1/Pitch ($20 Donation)
You Get: Shout-outs while live streaming (and high fives).
You Give: $2/Pitch ($40 Donation)
You Get: You pick your personalized shout-out while live streaming (Please keep it PG Rated; one shout out per donation).
"The Warren Harding"
You give a one-time donation of $50, and we haul up an inconvenient meal of your choice (think: Thanksgiving dinner).*
"The Tommy Caldwell"
You give $5/Pitch ($100 Donation) and Ryan free climbs an aid pitch of your choice.*
"The Beth Rodden"
You give $5/Pitch ($100 Donation) and Roxanne leads a pitch of your choice.*
You give $10/Pitch ($200 Donation) and Ryan aid climbs a free pitch of your choice.*
"The Costume Party"
You give $20/Pitch ($400 Donation) and we will climb in a costume of your choice. If we get multiple requests, we will divide them up in blocks/days. (We reserve the right to adjust the costume for safety reasons.)
To let us know which incentive you chose and how you'd like to see it, or to send in a request of your own, email Ryan at: firstname.lastname@example.org (subject line "BCM").
We will be footing the travel expenses ourselves - all money donated here goes directly to BCM.**
Route Breakdown and Ratings:
(The aid ratings will contain free ratings for what Ryan does not plan to aid climb. You can find a more detailed route description in our photos section.)
Pitch1 - 5.9 C1/ 5.12c
P2 - 5.9 C2 / 5.13c
P3 - 5.10 A0 / 5.12d
P4 - 5.10b C2 / 5.12a
P5 - C1 / 5.12b
P6 - C2 / 5.12c
P7 - C2 / 5.13c
P8 - 5.10d C1
P9 - 5.10 A0
P10 - C2 / 5.12c
P11 - C2F / 5.13a
P12 - 5.10 C2+/ 5.12d
P13 - 5.8 C1 / 5.12b
P14 - 5.11a
P15 - 5.10c
P16 - 5.10b
P17 - 5.7 C1 / 5.11d
P18 - 5.10a
P19 - 5.3
More route information can be found here:
*If we run out of options for the different donation tiers we still encourage you to donate and email us with more fun ideas that you feel fits your donation!
**Even though we are breaking down the donations per pitch we do not have a way to re-charge people as we climb. All donations will be for the entire climb, if we do not make it to the top we will credit back what we did not accomplish.