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The Desert – is now officially released (plus Spring Book Tour)

Apr 23 • 607 Views • No Comments on The Desert – is now officially released (plus Spring Book Tour)

“I’m not saying I’m going to rule the world, or I’m going to change the world, but I guarantee you that I will spark the brain that will change the world.”...

The Salajeet Collectors (Or Flying Squirrels in Pakistan) by Amanda Forrest

This story starts and ends with a chicken. On a bright morning in a high valley of the Hindu Kush, the doomed bird lay pinned atop a low...

Mar 5 • 2341 Views

The Desert by Luke Mehall, Release and Spring Tour

Dear readers, reviewers, promoters, podcasters, reporters, editors, bloggers, and anyone else interested in climbing and the great...

Mar 4 • 913 Views

Write for The Climbing Zine

The Climbing Zine is always accepting stories, photography, and art. Below are our loose guidelines, informal pitches from solid writers...

Feb 21 • 4208 Views

Read The Zine – Deals for the Week

We know you’re stoked to “read the zine” so we’re now offering a deal every week. Here’s what we have going...

Feb 10 • 3398 Views

Jim Bridwell’s Memorial in Yosemite (a photo essay)

When I heard that Jim Bridwell had died, my first thought was, I bet even he didn’t think he’d live this long. Between pushing the...

Jan 2 • 1432 Views

Events We Support: Get Complimentary Zines for YOUR Event

At The Zine we’ve got a plan. We started out small, really small, and we printed like 100 copies per issue. In 2019 that number will...

Dec 21 • 1355 Views

Where to Find The Climbing Zine – Independent Outlets

The Climbing Zine and Benighted Publications pride ourselves on independent distribution. Below is a list of our beloved retailers where...

Dec 9 • 3633 Views

Replacing The Seamstress Corner with Dave Marcinowski by Luke Mehall

There are climbing partners, and there are the climbing partners. The partner you want to climb to the ends of the Earth and back with. The...

Dec 6 • 1150 Views

Review: Lowa Alpine Pro GTX (womens)

Usually, just the thought of a new pair of mountaineering boots would make my feet ache, but that is not the case with the Lowa Alpine Pro...

Dec 5 • 2818 Views

The Giving Bolt, An Ode To The Bolt by Jimmy Keithley

Well here we are, old bolt; let me just say this before I remove you. You should be proud because great care was taken when you were...

Nov 30 • 1435 Views

The Desert (Mehall’s fifth book)

The Desert, Luke Mehall’s fifth and final book in his “dirtbag climber series” begins a Kickstarter campaign today to...

Nov 12 • 1600 Views

The Desert and The Dog by Luke Mehall

This is the most beautiful place on Earth, but of course, like Cactus Ed Abbey said, every person carries in their heart an image of the...

Nov 3 • 2550 Views

Powders of Persuasion by Luke Mehall (from The Desert)

My college years in The Desert were adventurous and crazy, a complete immersion in the unknown. After I graduated, I began to roam from...

Oct 19 • 1681 Views

Basaseachi by Matt Spohn

The teenage Federale slings his machine gun over his shoulder and bends toward my bag. Cocaine? he asks. Marijuana? I have a stash of weed...

Oct 18 • 2250 Views

The Long Way Back by Mike Reddy

“Oh you feel and you taste it and you want to go higher. So what do you do? And so you peak into the mountain where your desire goes....

Oct 1 • 3139 Views

The Painted Wall by Luke Mehall

It is like any other start to a day of climbing in the Black Canyon. Dave and I are up before the sun, throwing down coffee and a quick...

Aug 3 • 1623 Views

Going It Alone by Vic Zeilman

At some point in my early to midtwenties, I came to the conclusion that life is not about rock climbing. There’s just too much other...

Jun 25 • 5305 Views

Time Continuum of Desert Road Tripping by Kevin Volkening

The Pinnacle of Technology, as we called her drifted through the endless space, the time continuum that is road tripping. Flakes of snow...

Jun 5 • 4946 Views

A Venture Backward, Inward, and Upward by Rhiannon Williams

In Memory of Towyn Williams (1926 – 2016) I associate much of my childhood with a little white farmhouse in the Welsh countryside. My...

May 29 • 3987 Views

Hayden by Andrew Bisharat

Hayden, I am just so sad that you’re gone. The news struck me like a train. It literally knocked me off my feet. Since then I have felt...

Apr 20 • 2580 Views

Fill The Void by Shay Skinner

The reflection targets my disfigurement. If only the borders of this mirror could protect the rest of the world from my hideousness. My...

Dec 27 • 7381 Views

Flirting with The Nose In A Day in The Valley of Stone

“Whatever you can do, or dream you can, begin it. Boldness has genius, power and magic in it.” Goerte I grew up in the traditions of...

Jun 22 • 10517 Views

Kansas City Urban Summits, a buildering adventure by Dakota Walz

I could see him clearly from directly across the alleyway. A light was on and a white balding office worker was clearly burning the...

May 26 • 5512 Views

From Midas’s Touch to A Green Thumb: Remembering Doug Tompkins by Joy Martin

Doug Tompkins opens the door to a South American summer evening. At seventy-one—stooped and shuffling, a button-down shirt tucked into...

May 18 • 4578 Views

Tom Randall: Wide Boy, Small Ego, Big Heart by Luke Mehall

Like most desert rats, I first heard of Tom Randall during his and Pete Whittaker’s infamous off-width tour of the United States in 2011....

May 9 • 5374 Views

Are We Born to Climb? by D Scott Borden

Is climbing as innate as sharing, copulating, greed, or even walking? Many evolutionary biologists would offer that the essence of climbing...

May 7 • 12862 Views

Go To The Desert (a poem) by Luke Mehall

Go to the desert Or whatever place Is The Desert To You by Luke Mehall, photo by: Greg Cairns For me it’s The Desert You know why I...

May 3 • 3370 Views

Effort and Folly on Mount Waddington by Drew Thayer

Humbled The cam lobes slide in the fissure as I test it, useless. This dark, metamorphic rock, tortured entrails of a bygone continent, is...

Apr 30 • 3047 Views

Explaining a Memorial Toilet

A memorial toilet is a hard thing to explain. But that’s exactly what my friends were constructing last weekend, a new toilet in the...

Mar 30 • 6803 Views

Hear Mehall on The Enormocast

Check out Climbing Zine publisher, Luke Mehall on the Enormocast with Chris Kalous. Please throw the Enormocast a buck or two if you like...

Mar 27 • 5969 Views

Walmart Parking Lot (a poem) by Georgie Abel

by Georgie Abel (photo by Dylan Hightower) I was this close To forgetting what it feels like To sleep in a Walmart parking lot Somewhere in...

Mar 16 • 3472 Views

The Pain (of the desert) by Luke Mehall

The other day, on the Internet, I read about a climber whose fingertip broke off in a crack when he fell. Fingers in a Lightsocket the...

Mar 6 • 2196 Views

The Secret Spot by Joy Martin

If these rocks could talk, they’d tell a hell of a story: one of nature and development, of perseverance and triumph, of mountain lions...

Mar 1 • 3033 Views

Awake On El Cap by Tristan Greszko

Awake. Alone. It’s 3 am. Only two more hours to sleep, the clock is ticking. The world is silent.  Maybe there’s a breath of wind here...

Feb 21 • 8003 Views

The Crimson Bunny (Going at it alone) by Alexis McLean

A roommate and dear friend of mine used to talk both eloquently and incessantly about her Purple Rabbit. She would describe its power, its...

Feb 12 • 4443 Views

Jugs on Jugs by Gaelen Engler

Pulling into The Chief campground in Squamish for my first time, I had to double-check the sign to make sure my boyfriend and I...

Feb 8 • 42296 Views

Rambling In The Bugaboos by David Fay

We rounded the bend and there were half a dozen people lining up at the base of the route. Rock climbing pioneers had valued the virtue of...

Feb 7 • 3652 Views

Rasta, A Wise and Crafty Crag Dog by D Scott Borden

Editor’s note: Longtime Climbing Zine contributor D Scott Borden wrote this piece for Volume 7, and sadly as the Zine was going to...

Dec 25 • 4948 Views

The ’59 Sound, Remembering Eric Klimt by Kathy Karlo

The alarm blared repeatedly until I was jolted awake, not knowing what was a dream and what was real. I had to go to work for a few hours;...

Dec 2 • 4087 Views

Becoming A Modern Dirtbag by James Lucas

Every day 500,000 outdoor enthusiasts* put on a pair of rock shoes for the first time. But with every new climber joining the tribe,...

Aug 22 • 12050 Views

The Long Run, a profile of Alan Carne by Luke Mehall

“There were no girls when I started climbing [in England],” Alan said, in a tone more serious than joking. I’d just met Alan Carne...

Jun 13 • 5680 Views

My Golden Era (a poem) by Elliot Natz

by Elliot Natz Note: This piece is published in The Climbing Zine, Volume 10 photo of towers in Canyonlands National Park, Utah by Luke...

May 29 • 2125 Views

Lindsey Schauer: The Quintessential Climbing Mom

In the Last Pitch section of the new Climbing Zine, there’s a great, sentimental piece, written by Mallory Logan. Titled “The...

Sep 30 • 5199 Views

Hippies, Dirtbags, and A Gift From Grandma

When I was in my later years of being a teenager I was convinced that I was born too late. I wanted to live in the 1960s. I was going...

Jul 16 • 4818 Views

Perfectical Prose Perfectical Prose

Suicide and Pirates by Andrew Allport

May 17 • 7075 Views • 5 Comments on Suicide and Pirates by Andrew Allport

My father taught me how to climb, just as he taught me how to play guitar and ski—badly, I could say. But that isn’t quite right. Perhaps impatiently or unevenly. As...

Elegant and Brutal by Cristina Marcalow

I. Trapped Kaiser Santa Clara Hospital, June 2018 The haul bag sits, a stuffed pig in the trunk. Cams, nuts, and two...

May 16 • 542 Views

Yucca Ropes: The DIY Ancestral Puebloan Static Line by Len Necefer

In the late 1300s, experts point to drought and other environmental stressors impacting the Puebloan people in the...

May 4 • 1009 Views

Susie and The Gnar by Joshua Smith

Some are blessed by fate With thews and spines of steel, Some work hard and fiercely fight To rise above the common...

May 1 • 222 Views

Mountaineering Changed My Perspective On Beauty by Rebecca Ross

Most women, at some point in their lives, get discouraged about their appearance because they may not possess the ideal...

Apr 28 • 1841 Views

Finding Protection In Bears Ears by Josh Ewing

“Yucca sandals,” I say to myself. “How’d they do this move in yucca sandals?” The sheer sandstone wall below...

Apr 24 • 393 Views

The Art of The First Ascent by Luke Mehall

You know you’re getting old when they start replacing the bolts you used for a first ascent. That was my first...

Apr 17 • 347 Views

Climbing En Plein Air by Birch Malotky

The dance of renewal, the dance that made the world,  was always danced here at the edge of things…   —Ursula...

Apr 2 • 448 Views

More To Give, The First Solo-Free Single-Day Ascent of El Capitan by Pete Whittaker

Walking up to the base of Freerider, I felt rested, light, but increasingly nervous. Two years ago, I’d never climbed...

Feb 26 • 22119 Views

Reflections in The Black by Vic Zeilman

The following is Vic Zeilman’s piece “Reflections In The Black”, written for the recently released...

Feb 22 • 4332 Views

A Culture of Climbing: An Interview with Len Necefer

“I try to pursue my enjoyment with the idea that folks care and love for the land the way I do for my own home. I try...

Jan 27 • 2813 Views

Just A Climber, For Bears Ears (a short film) by Luke Mehall and Greg Cairns

Greg Cairns and Luke Mehall have finished their second short film together, called “Just a Climber, For Bears...

Jan 9 • 629 Views

Icons In Danger and Desert Medicine by Birch Malotky

Joshua Tree National Park is a refuge. I don’t know if I’d decided this by then, sitting folded into the crook of...

Jan 8 • 4514 Views

A Campfire Tale With The Old Man In The Desert by Stewart M. Green

The sun’s last rays glance across the underside of a cloud-swept November sky as it sets south of the La Sal...

Jan 6 • 1099 Views

A Narrow Escape on Mt. Kenya by Jason Haas

“Hey, wake up. Wake up!” Brian whispered harshly. “There’s someone out there.” I half opened an eye and...

Jan 6 • 4422 Views

Luke’s Vignettes by Luke Mehall

“Everybody must give something back / For something they get” —Bob Dylan, “Fourth Time Around”   On...

Jan 5 • 704 Views

Monster Cracks by Pete Whittaker

Over hundreds of thousands of years, water has trickled, raged, and poured down cracks and creases, winding and weaving...

Dec 30 • 4391 Views

Hidden Dragons by Chris Schulte

I started climbing in Durango, Colorado, a small and isolated burg on the edge of the desert and the mountains, pushing...

Dec 27 • 6624 Views

Pain and Perseverance: Linking Sixteen Towers in a Day by Matt Pickren

“If you just stop for a second, I can show you there’s no road out there!” Ben said. “I know there’s a road...

Dec 18 • 2335 Views

Fall on Rock by George Perkins

I clipped her to the anchor, untied her knot, and pulled the rope through the gear. “I need more time.” Jessica...

Dec 17 • 4271 Views

The Joy Pendulum, Swinging High and Low in Yosemite Valley by Lauren DeLaunay

As I listened to my boyfriend make his tenth phone call of the hour, I absentmindedly stirred vegetables and reflected...

Dec 15 • 5827 Views

Wide Is Love by Chris Schulte

Gray and white clouds rack up in billowed folds like the belly scales of a snake and curl widely across the winded and...

Dec 14 • 1104 Views

Where The Winds Hit Heavy by Matt Spohn

The granite escarpments of Castle Crags silhouetted the western skyway, massive gargoyles hunched and staring. I...

Dec 13 • 920 Views

The Best Crag in America by Eleanor Krause

It’s the beginning of August, 2018. Two months earlier, I’d been fortunate enough to be working for a prestigious...

Dec 5 • 850 Views

Mentors (from The Desert)

It was just weeks into this move that I realized just how much closer I was to Indian Creek, that old friend. It...

Nov 11 • 712 Views

Sanni McCandless: A Force of Nature by Joy Martin

Fear is the cheapest room in the house. I would like to see you in better living conditions. —Hafiz I’ve always...

Nov 1 • 126056 Views

Approach As Pilgrimage by Tim Rogers

Journal entry from 10/15/2014 Zion is the word. Despite all of our differences, to so many people the meaning of Zion...

Oct 24 • 3179 Views

Creeksgiving by Luke Mehall

No place soaks up sun like the Johnny Cat enclave at the Cat Wall, Indian Creek. The maroon cliffs are striped with...

Oct 21 • 3556 Views

Portaledge Protesting In Tasmania by Joy Martin

“They’re not like those trees,” said five-year-old Remi Middendorf, pointing at the young birches lining the hot...

Oct 3 • 6454 Views

Going Out To Come Home by Stacy Bare

The night was cold, and where the moon and stars shone around patches of clouds, they were incredibly bright. There was...

Sep 11 • 3649 Views

What We Talk About When We Talk About Choss by Steve “Crusher” Bartlett

Mudstrosity Yes, it wobbled. Three feet high, one foot wide, a foot deep, probably outweighing me, the block sat at...

Aug 30 • 4038 Views

An Existence of Persistence (a poem) by Devin Dabney

A passion that fuels Is one that burns brightly   Words by Devin Dabney. Photos by Angelique Brown. Published in...

Aug 20 • 1308 Views

A Climber Who Cries (a poem) by Luke Mehall

Do only writers cry when a writer dies? Do only musicians cry when a guitar player dies? Do only climbers cry when a...

Aug 17 • 1088 Views

A Marriage On The Rocks by Barbara Noseworthy

It’s 1981, and I’m 22 years old, about to graduate from college, trying to sort out what happens next. And...

Aug 13 • 1320 Views

Volume 13 Now Available

Volume 13 of The Zine is now printed and available to order. Here’s a look at the introduction from our...

Aug 3 • 966 Views

Love Letter To Climbing by Sara Aranda

Every once and a while I bust out my typewriters for a writing contest. This year at the International Climbers Fest in...

Jul 27 • 1124 Views

The Enormocast: A Review

Note: this piece was originally written for The Gulch, a fine, free magazine out of Durango, Colorado.  Enormocast:...

Apr 17 • 1182 Views

On Fear, Climbing, and Depression by Sonya Pevzner

Trigger warning: This article discusses topics of depression, suicidal thoughts, and anxiety. For some, the content may...

Mar 29 • 4336 Views

Adventures With Two Tent Timmy

“If Jesus can’t save you, life starts when the church ends.” Empire State of Mind by Jay Z Some call him Two Tent...

Feb 20 • 4468 Views

Lawton’s Wall, Wild Mexico

Again, this one starts with a crying baby. This time the baby is Isabella, and we’re deep in a wild Mexican canyon...

Feb 12 • 5306 Views

The Road and First Walls in Zion – from American Climber

This is an excerpt from the book, which documents Mehall’s tumultuous journey to climbing, which ultimately saved...

Feb 6 • 2447 Views

Patience by Chris Schulte

It starts with a plan like a break in the clouds. We set out thinking on the lines, the foods, the sunrises and...

Jan 18 • 4490 Views

Brooke Sandahl on the beginnings of freeing The Nose

Man what a route! As a child, I remember looking at photos of it in my Dad’s climbing books thinking, It must be like...

Jan 8 • 4895 Views

Silent Partners by Luke Mehall

I know he knows. Adam Lawton is proud. In every group of adventurers, there is a leader, and every great leader must be...

Jan 1 • 2433 Views

Explosives and Exploring in OUR Bears Ears National Monument by Luke Mehall

We were about thirty minutes into our adventure and five minutes away from finding the explosives. I looked back to my...

Dec 21 • 2789 Views