It is six weeks until Rob Greenwood, Matt Pycroft and myself head to Patagonia, hopefully to climb Cerro Torre.
It’s a beautiful mountain, its difficulty almost at odds with its aesthetic nature. A perfect granite peak; the southern hemisphere’s answer to Nameless Tower, and the ultimate ‘Chamonix Aiguille’.
The last couple of weeks I have been trawling back through my guidebooks and climbing photos, noting down some of the wheres and whens of my climbing life, preparing for a future project. It’s nice to look back on some of the amazing places I have been lucky enough to visit, and also to think about some of the amazing people I have met along the way.
In some ways this trip to Patagonia is the ultimate expression of those climbing experiences, as summitting Cerro Torre is one of three lifetime climbing ambitions that I have not yet realised, and the skills and experience I have built up over the last twenty years will all play a part in a successful ascent. And with the Compressor Route bolts now no longer in existence, a summit by any route is going to be a memorable outing.
Looking back at the thousands of photos on my hard-drive, it’s impossible to single any out in terms of importance, but here are a few that brought back some good memories and made me smile. Looking back at all these past adventures has really hit it home to me that it isn’t about hard moves, it’s not about reaching the summit and it isn’t about achieving an arbitrary goal or grade. It’s about burning off your mates! Only joking! But most of my favourite photos were of people, and not of routes. And that must mean something, right?
Email: Jack.geldard ( at) gmail.com