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Climbing Mt. Shuksan is interesting on many levels. I should know. I stood atop her serrated summit (far distance) recently, climbing through the clouds on my way to the stars. In doing so I had to deal with empty air, thousands of feet of what climbers nonchalantly refer to as "exposure," a downplay on words to say the least. Many times I found myself clinging to rock or ice with white knuckled fingers and toes, whispering the mantra "Don't look down!" Occasionally I cheated and looked anyway, which resulted in tighter grasping and much gasping.

I don't want to overstate my climbing abilities. I was well guided on this ascent. I always go with someone who can catch me (on this occasion her name was Georgie)! And, per usual, as I stumbled my way to the summit in unheroic fashion, in Georgie's shadow, I felt pretty damn good about it. And even better when we made it back down in one piece.


I climbed Mt. Shuksan in 1998. It was a training climb for Aconcagua, in Argentina, the tallest peak in the Western Hemisphere. I trained for two years to achieve the goal of bringing in the new millennium atop that great summit.

© Danny Kimberlin 2015