On Episode 202 of the Enormocast, I sit down across an internet gulf with neophyte climber and veteran MMA fighter, Celine Haga. Celine hails from Norway, but is ensconced in Albuquerque, NM to train for a sport that is illegal in her home country. Her desire to fight came after failing several physical fitness tests and being rejected by the Norwegian Army. Soon, the otherwise determined Haga was a powerlifter, then a ju-jitsu devotee, and finally found herself fighting in a ring in Japan. After years of MMA training and bouts around the world, Celine finally found a comparable pursuit to feed her addiction to challenge: climbing. Now a fledgling climber looking at a possible retirement from fighting, Celine Haga has fascinating views on the comparison of fighting an opponent and fighting for the chains.
On Episode 201 of the Enormocast, I sit down at the Monkey House climbing gym in Carbondale, CO with repeat guest Mary Harlan and Rock and Ice’s Francis Sanzaro to answer listener mail. Both Mary and Francis have decades of climbing experience, and Mary happens to also be an experienced guide. On this long awaited edition of Listener Mail, we tackle style, ethics, and culture questions galore. Some good laughs and some deep thoughts ensue. If you contributed, your swag will be forthcoming. If you missed out on submitting this time, hopefully it will be less than 4 years until the next one because these are a lot of fun to record.
On Episode 200 of the Enormocast, I sit down with Timmy O’Neill. Timmy made a name for himself as a speed demon on the walls of Yosemite, but also as a fast-talking wise ass in such films as Urban Ape and Paralellojams. Born on the mean streets of Philly as one member of an enormous Irish Catholic family, Timmy busted a move to the West as soon as he was able and lucked into a scene in Yosemite with such contemporaries as Dean Potter and Sean “Stanley” Leary. His brother, Sean O’Neill, lost the use of his legs as a youth, and Timmy pushed his brother to become a climber and finally climb big walls. The experience of seeing his brother thrive in the vertical world on El Cap led Timmy to help form and help run Paradox Sports for many years. He also became a trusted partner for blind climber, Erik Weihenmayer. Now at middle age, Timmy is able to reflect in a crazy life on the rocks and all the love he feels for the gifts the natural world has given him and for the community that surrounds.