Scaling Peaks Like He's... 88?
He may be turning 90 next week, but legendary dirtbag climber Fred Beckey still has it.
Climber Richard Shore documented the nonagenarian's 300-foot climb (click through to see more photos) up the Tranquility route on Moosedog Tower in Joshua Tree last week, complete with photos and crotchety asides: "I'm climbing shitty today," Beckey tells Shore at one point. Later, he doesn't quite catch the name of the tower: "Hedgehog? Moosecock? Moosecat? Oh, Moosedog! Like the one I did in the Karakoram."
Although Beckey's no longer racking up first ascents like he used to—he required some extra assistance from his partners—the three-pitch, 5.6-grade ascent was no small feat for a man who started climbing pre-World War II.
Celebrated in the climbing world as the original dirtbag, Beckey has authored a number of memorable guidebooks, including his most recent, Fred Beckey's 100 Favorite North American Climbs, published last January by Patagonia Books.