Entries by Patrick

Rites of Passage

“So far this is type three fun,” Matt comments. The first two pitches have been miserable. The ice is fine, or at least good enough, but the wind and low temperatures are BRUTAL. Up to this point, I’m kicking myself for getting out of bed and passing up on sleeping in with my girlfriend, wasting […]

Scottish Winter

I was in Scotland this past week  to take part in the the BMC’s International Winter Meet, an event held every two years to bring climbers from around the world together to experience what winter climbing in Scotland is all about.

The Heretic

  Heresy: An unorthodox practice, publicly avowed, and obstinately defended. Heretic: One who carries out the above; traditionally burned alive as penalty for sins.   THE HERETIC article by Patrick Cooke   ***** There’s a particular dogma within our community that drives us and binds us together: get out every chance you can. Our season is […]

Overcoming Fear – Taking the Sharp End

“Even from the base, Whiteman Falls is an intimidating line: a cone of crazy aerated bobbles of ice the consistency of styrofoam (if you’re lucky) leads the way up to a cave on the left below a crazy mushroom that looks like one of the monsters from Calvin’s Imagination as he daydreams of being Spaceman Spiff. From there, an often hollow tube of a pillar leads to further overhangs that guard the exit.”

Lost and Found

Lost: Sense of humility,  proper assessment of ability. Last seen somewhere between Canmore, AB and the belay atop first pitch of Whitemans Falls. Lost: Pair of balls. Last seen between 2nd and 3rd screw, pitch 2. Lost: Dignity, pride, ego. Last seen between 3rd and 4th screw, pitch 2. Beer if returned to owner. Found: […]

Fear – Taking the Sharp End

“This was supposed to be the easy line. Soft sticks, a fun groove, and good stems made for fun climbing. Somewhere along the way though, everything changed – Now I’m 20 feet out from my last screw snd I’m absolutely terrified.”

Seeking Repentance

“What the fuck do I do here?” I don’t know who I’m talking to… it’s just me and the huge chockstone looming above. Doubt is creeping in, but it’s kind of a moot point. I’m committed. The ice below the chockstone is ok, but it isn’t really of the quality that I’d be psyched to […]

Renormalization – Taking the Sharp End

“The messed up weather we’ve had this winter makes climbs harder and rarer to form, but renormalization has become a concept in my life that transcends climbing. Emotions are heightened, patience is lacking – so much has changed and needs to be embraced. Nothing is as it once was.”

Change of Venue – Taking the Sharp End

“Staring up at 110 feet of frozen vertical candles, thoughts drowning in doubt and fear… This is what we came here for. This was why I left New Hampshire to come to the Catskills. The Advocate is in as good shape as one really could hope for after only a week of cold, but it’s been a brutal, bitter, cold, and I wonder if each swing, or each kick, or the weighting of a tool will blow out the delicate formation above.”