Because it’s there*. Having asthma since before I could remember, I had been limited in what activities I could participate in. I couldn’t stray far from home in the winter, I couldn’t horseplay or laugh too hard without my inhaler around, I couldn’t…I developed an avoidance of the mountains. I missed out on skiing and snowboarding with friends because I was afraid of being a liability with my lungs.
I summited my first glaciated route in 2018 on Mount Baker with Kaf Adventures. I hiked solo with an overnight stay at Blue Lakes in Colorado and took an early morning excursion to Blue Lakes Pass at 13,000ft in the morning in 2017. It feels like conquering an old demon. I climb because I can and through experience believe that I will succeed. Anyone can tell you that you’ll be OK, but hearing it from someone who lives with the same condition can make all the difference in the world. That’s why I climb. Climbing with asthma presents you with an opportunity to do what others dreamed you cannot.
* An oft quoted George Mallory when questioned about his repeated Everest attempts.
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Yesterday, January 7th, I completed the first training run of the 24 week expeditionary mountaineering program by Steve House and Scott Johnston. I haven't run a full hour in quite a while and was pleased to see I hit the goal of less than 5% in the Pace:Heart-Rate ratio. 5.75 miles in 60 minutes while maintaining Zone 1 and Zone 2 intensity levels is a great start to a program and a New Year.
Yes, the program runs a bit beyond the climb date of Mt Hood, but I do have other mountains in mind this climbing season. This climb is a special one and a great kickoff because it's not about me, it's about all of those individuals that suffer from the myriad of lung ailments.
by Frederick Caton on Tue, Jan 08, 2019 @ 10:23 AM