Magnetic North - equipping alpine seekers
equipping alpine seekers



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Training journal entry: Solo and unsupported

Eagle + swans

When I first sat at my favorite table to work, an insincere snow squall poured through The Narrows, its evanescence belching from a nearly-cloudless sky. Again finding myself in the land of my project, I seek for this summer’s expression to bring about greater balance for me, my family, and for the people who are uplifted by my spirit-work.

So much process goes into this work, that were I an ‘end justifying the means’ kind of athlete I would have given up long ago. Perhaps that is why some of the things I have done, looming obvious in plain sight, no one has ever done before. Surely, I cannot credit this fact to sturdy limbs or ten-gallon lungs - I have proved to be quite proletariat at the human monkey tricks around which much of ‘sport’ (and how I loathe to call it that) revolves. Only when I engage the body as simply a willing vehicle of gnosis; the living, moving, always-shifting manifestation of the beauty I sense pushing up through the land and reverberating through my watery flesh; do I achieve the postures and places I set out to become.

There is no hope, nor volition, in me to ever subjugate the more-than-human with whom I move to some insecurity-placating notion of ‘conquering’ a mountain, ‘adventuring’ on a trail, or ‘finishing’ a climb. Even the goal itself falls away as a superfluous finger-pointing-at-the-moon when I am in the throes of creation, the act and beingness of no-self.

Any drive one might observe as an element of my mountain practices is simply my reverence for what it takes for me to form myself into a tool capable of a tight twirl; the positions my body takes in nature among my omniscient rock, tree, and animal friends; and the invisible path of travel that I leave behind as paint if only in my body, mind, and soul after the event for which I had trained is complete. It is not the satisfaction of having done so I do not have to do again. In fact, this year’s top summer project is to re-do something I have already done while in a style, in a physical form I find more aesthetically and ethically pleasing.

Always solo (never alone); always unsupported (never without).