I love people. I love hearing what they’ve done and where they’ve been. I love seeing the hardship they wear on their face and getting insight into the aspects of life that they try to hide. I love when their eyes light up and a smile creases their cheeks.
On my recent hike up Green Mountain, I got a chance to talk with a man named Roger. He’s lived in Boulder for most of his life. He taught high school physics for decades and still tutors students in the craft. He’s worried about cell phones and social media and what they’re doing to human interaction. He pursues a green lifestyle.
Roger has also found toe-holds and hand-holds to take him up the east face of Longs Peak, known by climbers across the globe as The Diamond, more times than anyone else in the world. Having strapped on his climbing shoes at the base of the 900 foot vertical wall over 103 times, the East Face is like an old friend. Perhaps his most ambitious attempt would be the time he biked from Boulder to the Longs Peak trailhead (that’s a 40 mile ride with 4,400 feet of elevation gain*), then ran the trail to the base of the Diamond, then free-climbed (as in didn’t use ropes) to the top. Pretty amazing.
Moral of the story? Ask questions. People are interesting and crazy and crazy interesting.
*Check out MapMyRide.com for the beta on that trip.