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A Dream Come True


 

by Daniel Byrne

August 02, 2002

At around eleven I joined Boy Scouts as a lot of young boys do. I was fortunate to be introduced to climbing by one of my scoutmasters soon after. I had always climbed trees but now I was using real harnesses and ropes and climbing on real rock and not my cheap nylon rope swami. It was great and my mother approved of it.

Sometime later he gave me two paper bags full of past climbing mags. I feasted all my urges and took in all the knowledge that I could. In one issue of Climbing I saw an article on Camp 4 and Yosemite. So I wanted to know and see more of Yosemite so I went to the downtown library and check out the book "Camp 4". That book has and will always be an inspiration to me. My mind was set, I was going to go there one day.

A year later my buddy scoutmaster stopped climbing and I was on my own. I joined the local gym and climbed as hard as I could. I progressed pretty well too. A year later I was climbing high 10's. But I needed more in the outdoors.

A few years past and I still hadn't made it to Yosemite. Talk about sad. I would sit at home looking at my Royal Robbins poster and imagine it was me on the Salathe making the first ascent. Then one day my chance came. My sister wanted to go hike the Half Dome trail which required camping somewhere in the Valley. So I tagged along with her. When we got up there I asked her where we were staying. She told me the backpackers campground. I was like where? I didn't know of any backpackers campground. We drive around the Valley rode and pull into Camp 4 of all places. She says this is the place and I go nuts. I can't sit still. We were really lucky cause we got the last campground. As we walk to the spot I see groups of climbers on both sides sorting gear and going over routes and even rope walking. I was in awe. We got set up and I walk over to the Columbia boulder to check out Midnight Lighting. There happens to be about 20 people there climbing and watching. So I took a seat amongst the crowd. It was amazing. There were people from all over there collaborating and having a great time. There was a drunk guy from Sweden and a couple from Spain and even a guy from Japan. They didn't talk much but they would play as I would call it charades and there were a lot of smiles among them.

I did some climbing the next day and went home that night. My dream was short lived but will remain with me for the rest of my life. As insignificant as it seems to a lot of people plays a huge part in my life. Every time that I now return to that place that I call "Heaven on Earth" I will be brought back to the moment when I had first arrived.



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Live To Climb

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