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#33235 - 09/21/07 03:54 AM Re: Youngest climber on High E? [Re: mworking]
dalguard Offline

Registered: 03/22/00
Posts: 1515
Loc: CT
Things have changed since then and kids are generally far more dependent on their parents than when we were kids.
You say that like it's a good thing.

#33239 - 09/21/07 12:44 PM Re: Youngest climber on High E? [Re: dalguard]
fallenglass Offline

Registered: 08/01/03
Posts: 276
Loc: cornwall
it is amazing that we survive childhood -- when i think of the stuff my brother and i did when our parents weren't looking, i'm surpised that it didn't result in more trips to the emergency room. our species probably wouldn't have survived if children didn't do a little risky play.

i'll occasionally look out the window into the woods and see my kids balancing accross a rotten log over the muddy creek and think 'oh no what if they fall and crack their skull open? or skewer themselves on sharp sticks!' my second thought is, 'man that looks like fun!'

#33240 - 09/21/07 12:45 PM Re: Youngest climber on High E? [Re: dalguard]
museumdork Offline
Site Supporter

Registered: 03/13/01
Posts: 110
Loc: new paltz
for what it's worth, that day we were coming off Proctoscope when Team High E strolled by. There were at least two adults in addition to the six-year old. This suggests (but of course does not prove) she was the middle climber.


#33242 - 09/21/07 01:36 PM Re: Youngest climber on High E? [Re: dalguard]
mworking Offline
old hand

Registered: 05/26/04
Posts: 764
 Originally Posted By: dalguard
Things have changed since then and kids are generally far more dependent on their parents than when we were kids.
You say that like it's a good thing.

Well it is in terms of this discussion it is the reason why I believe what I say.

As far as teaching our children self reliance and responsibility bad. But the alternative parental choices would often be considered irresponsible too. I simply accept that things have changed greatly since I was a child and try to act accordingly.

Added: I have almost no concerns for my daughter like those fallenglass describes. I must admit I have a very few for my 11 yr old son, but they never sound as peaceful is the looking out the window scene described here. For instance most trips to a BMX end when one of us gets hurt - and we haven't gone often because of it! Note the WE, he is dependent and a parent is always present.

museumdork - was one at least one of the High E party recognizable to many on this board?

Edited by mworking (09/21/07 03:09 PM)

#33252 - 09/21/07 04:24 PM Re: Youngest climber on High E? [Re: mworking]
BillH Offline

Registered: 11/16/06
Posts: 59
Loc: Maryland
This is a pretty interesting thread: rock climbers (who most non-climbers see as fooliish risk takers) talking about what risks are appropriate for children. I think a lot of the public would be surprised at some of the views expressed. I have a couple of thoughts.

I agree that many kids today are more dependent on (or controlled by) their parents and other adults than when I was growing up in the 50s and 60s. I do not think that is a good thing. Learning to make good, independent judgemnts requires some independence.

As I consider the risks to which kids can be exposed (traffic accidents, drugs, biking or skate boarding without a helmet, climbing trees, swimming in ponds, crossing busy streets, etc.) I think climbing a 5.6 in the gunks (even High E) between two competent, concerned adults on a nice fall day is pretty low risk. Of course I don't know that there were 2 competent concerned adult on Team High E, or that the child was the middle climber. But, as neither I nor either of my kids was involved, that is really none of my business.

When considering something like this for my kids, I always thought the psycological issues were very important. No one should be up on the rock (or in a race car, or in any other risky activity) unless he or she really, really wants to be there. I would not have wanted either of my daughters to climb unless the motivation was hers and the situation such that psycological supporot was readily avalailable. I see no reason to push a child of mine into a sporting situation where she or he might be terrified.

Finally, one of the things I liked about climbing at the Gunks in the 60s and 70s, and am glad is still the case today, is that no one tried to regulate what or how I climbed or whether I was suitably skilled or mature to climb. [Thanks to the Vulgarians for beating off the Appies.] The rocks are just there and I have the freedom to climb them (albeit now for a modest fee). I hope we all keep this freedom in mind and don't get too judgmental about the ascent of High E that started this thread.
Bill Hutchins

#33264 - 09/22/07 02:11 PM Re: Youngest climber on High E? [Re: BillH]
gunks Offline

Registered: 10/26/01
Posts: 84
Loc: Rosendale, NY
I am surprised at the responses to my two-sentence post. I will leave the discussion of whether it is a risky outing for a 6-year old to other parents. Here are my responses to some of your questions.

The child’s parents are not climbers. Her father was waiting at the base while my second (a mature adult) and I took her up High E. My second belayed me and took out the gear. I led with two ropes with my second on one and the child on the other. My second climbed slightly ahead of her and made sure that she was not off route etc.. To get down, I did a tandem rappel with her. So she was never out of sight or out of reach of her adult partners.

Climbing High E was the child’s idea. She saw the climb on a telescope at my friend’s house and wanted to be on the High E to wave hello to my friend. Before High E, we’ve done several multi-pitch climbs and she had no problem climbing Apoplexy, Higher Stannard (direct start and finish), Birdie Party (1st pitch), Something Interesting and Hyjek’s Horror, just to name a few.

Yes, she had fun. I told her that a famous climber once said that the best climbers are the ones who have the most fun and it’s not worth doing any climb if she’s not enjoying it.

Yes, the child is the same “little Japanese girl” you saw in Central Park. The week after our High E climb, she did a V6 in Central Park. I told two of my climber friends that she did a V6, both of them said, “You mean ‘V 3’?”. No, I mean 5.12. I heard that Urban Climber is doing an article on her.

#33265 - 09/22/07 02:25 PM Re: Youngest climber on High E? [Re: gunks]
chip Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 10/06/01
Posts: 2679
Loc: Sittin' Pretty in Fat City
Thanks for your reply. Sounds like you covered all the concerns and had a great time.

#33268 - 09/22/07 02:51 PM Re: Youngest climber on High E? [Re: chip]
Kent Offline
old hand

Registered: 01/21/00
Posts: 1038
Loc: The Bayards
Very cool Gunks. Nice work.

#33269 - 09/22/07 11:43 PM Re: Youngest climber on High E? [Re: gunks]
Smike Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 05/01/01
Posts: 3143
Loc: in your backyard
Nice Gunks, what an awesome time. Never mind the rest of the dribble around here. Far less dangerous (and way more fun) then soloing 50' trees when I was six years old.

#33276 - 09/23/07 11:32 PM Re: Youngest climber on High E? [Re: gunks]
Rockanice Offline

Registered: 12/24/99
Posts: 146
Loc: New York

10 year old giving hip belay.

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