Book Report: Valley Walls—A Memoir of Climbing & Living in Yosemite

Beginning with a profile of Alex Honnold featuring him soloing in Yosemite on the popular television show 60 Minutes, and followed a few years later by Tommy Caldwell and Kevin Jorgenson’s dramatic ascent of the Dawn Wall on El Cap, climbing in Yosemite has increased its appeal to an audience outside of core climbers. An audience…

Ricky Bobby & A Reason to Ride

For the past five years, I have ridden my bicycle in the Beth Isreal Deaconess A Reason to Ride—a charity bike ride that raises money for cancer research—in support of my best friend’s wife who is living with, and fighting, brain cancer. In the wake of such an inspiring event, you might think I would feel…

Mountain Biking’s One-Hit Wonders

When I first discovered mountain biking, the bikes were rigid, they stopped via manual rim brakes, and wheels were still just 26 inches. Back then, the idea of vast trail networks like Kingdom Trails, the Carrabassett Valley, and my local system, Bear Brook, was the stuff of dreams. My earliest memory of mountain biking is…

Book Report: North

I, like most people, first heard about Scott Jurek from Christopher McDougall’s now-infamous book Born to Run—the incredible story introducing the Tarahumara Indians of Mexico’s Copper Canyons to the world and some of the most accomplished runners. Since first learning of Scott, he has written and published his own books: Eat and Run, detailing his life…

The Expanding Kingdom

It’s hard to believe that it’s been roughly 15 years since I made my first trip to Kingdom Trails in East Burke, Vermont. In fact, it’s been so long that I can’t even remember how I came to learn about how this sleepy town in Vermont’s Northeast Kingdom that was reinventing itself as a mountain…

Building a Better Boulderer, Not Person

Over ten years ago, I was wandering around the Boulder Natural Area of Pawtuckaway State Park, somewhat lost and most certainly confused, in search of any problems on which I stood a chance of success when I first met Ron. He was an older gentleman, slight of build, with a beard, a ponytail, and everything…

Rediscovering that Rumney Rocks

Last winter, I committed myself to rock climbing. I bought books like The Self Coached Climber and The Rock Climber’s Training Manual, developed a training plan, devoted my time to going to the climbing gym, and even focused on trying to make my weaknesses strengths (I still can’t crimp, by the way). All of this led me…

Sometimes Nature Decides for You

I look at my phone’s screen and the message on it from Doug reads, “Ideas for tomorrow?” I’m flummoxed—even the most optimistic version of myself believes the conditions in the backcountry will be icy and a couple of inches of snowfall from the night before will leave the crags too wet for climbing. I reply…

Call It A Great Day on Franconia Ridge

Epic views, an exposed ridge, and tagging the summits of two of New Hampshire’s 48 4,000-footers always makes a hike across Franconia Ridge a worthwhile endeavor. Throw in good friends, great weather, a pre-hike breakfast of biscuits and gravy from Sunny Day Diner, and icy cold Moat Mountain Brewing Call It A Day Double IPAs…