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Joined: 09/01/1996 Posts: 15178
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I wish we could meet up and do some blue runs... maybe someday

When I got married in 1070, my bride was a 20 year old ski instructor. She has always been a beautiful skier, smooth and perfect. I do my best, and like you, I have been doing this since 1961, but I'll never be as good as she was.

I haven't had a problem with heights in general, and a leeson I learned when I was climbing, the more you do it, the easier it is to handle the exposure. I was doing a solo climb on an easier route when I was 20, and I got used to going up the route unroped, about 350 feet. That is the height of a 30 story building, but it didn't bother me a bit then. A year later, I did a climb with a friend that had about 2000 feet of exposure. I was shaking. The difference was huge. I had to control my fear completely, since in rock climbing, fear will rob you of your free balance and your wits. My lesson was learned, it is a relative thing. A frame of mind. A condition where you have control, but only to a point.

This last summer I have done a lot of hiking. I have gotten up to high points all around Yosemite, but not in any way that was scary to me. I always felt safe, since I would not allow myself to go to a point where I could be in any real danger. I know from experience a good fall of 20 feet on granite can kill you, it does not have to be 1000 feet. So I take my time when I am in a place where even a smaller fall could take me off the trail. just getting older and wiser.

But I had an experience once, when I was climbing by myself, I was in my early twenties, on a peak that I had done several times before. I went a slightly different way, and found myself in a situation where I knew I could NOT downclimb the last 20 feet, and I had to move across a 6 to 8 foot very smooth section that was at my very limit of friction climbing. A slip would take me to the rock about 150 to 200 feet below. I stood there for about ten minutes, knowing what I had to do, but fully aware that I was risking it all, and it could very well be the last thing I ever did in my life. I finally did it, got past it, and swore I would never be as foolish again. That memory is still with me, I feel OK if I don't go past a certain point.

I think we all have to conquer some element of self control, the idea that we are doing something that is self destructive (your thoughts of jumping off) creates a different level of fear, and we have to have the security, the certainty that we know we will not do it.

Anyway, I wish I was skiing in Colorado. Keystone, Loveland, Copper, Breckenridge, any of them. Enjoy the day next time!

[Post edited by buffdad at 01/11/2016 01:12AM]

(In response to this post by cswilliam)

Posted: 01/11/2016 at 01:09AM


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Current Thread:
Fear -- cswilliam 01/11/2016 12:23AM
  Re: Fear -- Gateway 01/11/2016 1:11PM
  Nice -- buffdad 01/11/2016 01:09AM
  You are far beyond my skills -- cswilliam 01/11/2016 01:26AM
  It may be possible -- buffdad 01/11/2016 01:32AM
  That would be great! -- cswilliam 01/11/2016 07:43AM
  That is a good story ! Thank you ! Glad you are safe ** -- Buffs4Ever 01/11/2016 12:59AM