On Episode 198 of the Enormocast, I sit down in Ouray, Colorado on a too bright Sunday morning with British alpinist, Tom Livingstone. Tom was born in the climbing desert of southern England, but now bases out of the climbing Mecca of North Wales. A traditional rock climber at first, Tom has made a name for himself climbing adventurous peaks in the Karakorum including completing the long sought after first ascent of the North side of Latok 1. Tom’s hyper-motivated and fun-loving attitude belies the fact that he is also tough as nails and willing to pitch himself at audacious unclimbed faces with style. And, of course, this show is a true lesson in the Queen’s English.
On Episode 196 of the Enormocast, I sit down with couple, Janelle and Mark Smiley. Janelle and Mark spent much of the last decade in a van pursuing the 50 Classic Climbs of North America. In addition to that hair-brained addiction to climbing and alpinism, both are crack skiers and guides, with Mark and 18 year veteran mountain guide and Janelle a champion ski-mountaineering racer . On this episode, we learn of all the trials and tribulations of completing 48 of the 50 Classics (attempting all of them at least once), the ups and downs of love and vanlife, and more. Mark and Janelle also have launched climbing and skiing online learning courses at mtnsense.com with the simple mission of keeping you alive. These two have relentlessly pursued an exceptional life in the mountains together and it shows.
On Episode 193, I sit down with American alpine legend, George Lowe. George grew up in Ogden, Utah, among an extended family of climbers, skiers, river runners that included his equally legendary cousin, Jeff. A self-described dork, George found a home among the small counter culture of climbing and began using his problem solving skills on the granite of the Wasatch and the Tetons at a fairly early age. Decades later at 75, Lowe’s resumé rivals any American mountaineer with winter ascents in the Tetons, first ascents of many “last great problem” type routes throughout the Canadian Rockies and Alaska and finally the Himalayas. Despite his maniacal effort to downplay his achievements, this episode solidifies what we already know: George Lowe is one of the best to ever climb – and also may or may not have helped with denuclearization.
Slideshow images courtesy of Michael Kennedy.