Mark, Jordan, Last Month discussed on Outside Podcast
With a new friend last month jordan. Cannon celebrated his twenty seventh birthday. The big wall climber likes to set himself a birthday challenge like scaling ten really hard pitches in one day but this year he went even bigger on may second jordan announced on instagram. That he's gay making him the first male professional climber to come out publicly. My post went way better than i than i could have hoped for. positively overwhelming. I would say how did that make you feel very loved. Jordan had been terrified before the announcement until recently. You'd had a hard time even coming out to his close friends and he wasn't used to feeling loved not at all but that's started to change. After jordan met legendary ios seventy climber mark hued on a few years ago. Jordan could legitimately be my grandson jordan and mark started climbing together and soon decided to take on one of the biggest challenges in the sport as a team but what began as an athletic partnership turned into a life changing friendship for both of them. That rare signed that allows you to fulfill your dreams in ways. You don't even believe are possible. What were your first impressions of each other marked. You want to i. She's asking. You owe me trying to avoid the question. What did i think of mark when i first saw the first thing was wow. He's a lot shorter than i expected. Mark is typically Glowing with excitement and energy just to being outside going climbing or talking to his friends and he was friendly yet very charismatic. Not not old curmudgeon. Like you might assume. Some older climbers to be like. They sound like this now but when they first met at a climbing event near lake tahoe and twenty. Eighteen jordan was pretty starstruck by mark. If you know anything about me and my climbing. I really like you semi climbing and i really like climbing history. Mark was a big climbing hero. Mine and somebody who is steeped in the assembly climbing lord that i was really familiar with at this point jordan was already a skilled and ambitious climber but the part of the sport that he loved most free climbing big walls like seventies el capitan. That all started back in the nineteen seventies with mark and his climbing partner max jones. That's when new tools like spring. Loaded anchors allowed climbers to ascend roots in the so-called free style using ropes. Only to catch them if they fell but not to pull themselves up a route well. Free clinton was common but free climbing at a very very difficult level was uncommon and free climbing. Al capp hadn't even been done yet. It was one of those things were as just so big. And so while that people didn't even conceive that you could climb it at one point mark and max free climbed all but three hundred feet of the salif awol one of the iconic routes up the three thousand foot sheer face of el cap and this was in nineteen seventy nine and this blue people's minds big wall free climbing. That's my favorite thing to do. And max and mark are huge players in that history. It's it's pretty funny. Being a legend jordan and mark ended up talking a lot at that lake tahoe event. The even climb together on some nearby routes on donner pass. That mark had pioneered back in the day. I saw that mark was still climbing so climbing. Hard rafer the gecko. It was obvious that jordan was way into it was felt that it was really cool to be climbing there at the cliff. Where maximum i did you know. So many hard routes not surprisingly they got on the topic of yosemite and mark confessed that even though he's now sixty two he still sometimes dreamed of completing a full free climb of el cap. he'd been free rider the same route. That alex hanalei famously climbed without any ropes in two thousand seventeen. I wanted to free. Climb out cap. It's a big thing. I mean it's a it's a giant thing and it's been a big thing in my life and so i thought well i could probably do free writer. I could probably work on it. He'd already done some work on free-rider attempting it a couple of times but he never really got close to the top things just sort of fell apart and nothing really happened. And so i just sorta gave up on it. And i went. Oh well you know. I mean you. Don't get everything you want in life. Sometimes that really surprised me. Because i was like dude what you like. You can't give up. You gotta you gotta go back you gotta you gotta see see it through but seeing through a climb of means putting a monstrous physical effort. That can be tough. Even on young climbers it takes intensive training mark. Figured a years worth even. If you're in top shape climbing free writer can take days and you have to lug a pile of gear up the wall with you when you're on l. cap. You know you've gotta hall all your water your food. You're sleeping gear the extra gear. You've gotta hall all that up the cliff behind you. And so i told jordan i just said i can't haul it. You know there. I just. I can't do any hauling on the whole route. And i would need to devote a year of my life to it. You know i would have to spend a year climbing with someone and getting in shape and psyching up and not have to go work the route and you know that's what i need. So i describe this whole thing to jordan. He said oh no big deal. I can do that. You know i'll do that for you and i said. Are you sure i go. This is a whole year. We're talking about and he goes. Oh yeah no problem. And i went. Okay and here was you know. I've barely even knew this guy. Then they seem to be in very different places in their lives in some important ways they were ready to find. Each other jordan had climbed free-rider once already and after that he and his climbing partner were tempting. Another route on al capp when they witness the death of two veteran climbers right in front of them. Jordan was badly shaken and in the aftermath. He and his partner went in different directions. Because that accident. Like split up my partnership. And so i kind of felt like i was at a point where i didn't have a climbing partner and i also felt like i was had gotten to a point my climbing where i had prioritized my own goals. I didn't want to be as selfish and my climbing anymore. And so when. I met mark when he told me he needs a partner for this thing. I was like sweet. I need a partner to your mike climbing hero. Three help support you on your goal and see your dream come. Full circle.