A New Climbing Season, A New Life
Last night a breeze picked up and the pitter patter of dried leaves hitting the pavement sparked a drive I was just beginning to lose. The humidity that’s been draped over me the last five months has been dried up by a crisp wind and chilly evenings. The summer haze has lifted revealing stark blue skies and a glow that kisses the skin instead of burning it. It’s that time to break out tents and sleeping bags and sit around fires wearing jackets and beanies. It’s time to use the zippers on our bags, the flys on our tents, the drawstrings on our mummies. It’s time for gloves, time for pumpkins, time for flannel. But most of all, it’s time for friction. It’s climbing season again.
Recently my life has been developing into a dirtbag paradise. I’ve always dreamed of a lifestyle where I could make enough money to take long stints of time off for climbing and other adventures. The catch is finding a job that allows me to take such long periods of time off and still have a job. I’ve never been satisfied as a weekend warrior because trips become too routine and are limited to no more than 5 hour drives.
In a weird turn of events I’ve stumbled onto just that job.
If you know much about me then you know that back in January I quit both of my jobs in Salt Lake City and started living out of the bed of my F-150 and traveling for a bit. I fell in love with that lifestyle for a few really good reasons. One I love seeing my friends and they live all over the country! Two I love the spontaneity of a life on the road where I can chase the weather or see a picture in a magazine and say “I wanna go climb that route.” My ultimate goal in leaving SLC was to end my travels in Rapid City, SD and start a rock climbing gym there as a career.
As I traveled I began to think about what my life would be like as the owner of a climbing gym. I knew it could go many ways but I pictured being married to the gym forever and my hopes of being a traveling adventurer wouldn’t be met. I continued to pursue the gym and even acquired the funding I needed through a generous investment from a good friend. So there I sat, my tips pointed straight down the slope to my dream, ready to take the plunge but I couldn’t dig my poles in to send me over the edge. The idea of settling into the rest of my life just seemed too cliche and so when a cell phone tower climbing job in Dallas randomly fell in my lap I slowly started to consider it.
The next thing I knew I was renting a three bedroom house in the Lake Highlands area of Dallas with one of my very best friends, working 90 hour work weeks on cell phone towers all over Texas. I struggled to take time off to get away from the heat. My climbing decreased drastically, I hated Texas and it’s heat and over crowded cities. However, I was paying off debts and taking baby steps towards a life of travel.
I’m currently broken away from the company I originally started with in Texas because I was uncomfortable with the guy I worked for. Instead, I’m now my own general contractor for wireless solutions including work on the ground and on the tower. I make more money and I can choose when I want to work and when I don’t want to work. And the best part is I can take on work in different states and regions.
The start of this climbing season marks the biggest changes my life has ever seen and my stoke is through the roof. I have an amazing girlfriend who deserves this shoutout and more. I’m making great money and meeting new people all over the country. And in the next few months I will have broken the lease on my Dallas house freeing myself from that hell people actually choose to live in, and I will be buying a camper to pull behind my truck and I will be living out of that. I will have regular long periods of time of between extreme periods of workaholism. Between projects I will simply drive my camper to a desired location and call that home until my next wireless project.
This climbing season is my rebirth.