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Dut Adventure StQi'ts Heie

Mistress Tabatha president and founder, The Masochist Society iMMllOUl

"Worst Harness 2010"

- The Masochist Society

If you climb because you love pain, this isn't the harness for you. The Petzl SAMA failed to itch, chafe, scrape or cause pain in our intensive testing sessions. The harness incorporates breathable mesh in both the waist belt and leg loops inside a lightweight frame, taking all the fun and pain out of climbing. The sweat and raw skin that we've come to rely on from snug-fitting harnesses has all but vanished, making this gear utterly useless to pain seekers.

Petzl Sama The Masochist Society

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^ CONTRIBUTORS

With a century of combined rock experience under their swamis, these four contribs are representing for our 40th anniversary issue.

Topher Donahue

"Sometimes, I'll put [my rock shoes] on at my desk, just to get psyched." says Topher Donahue. 38, of Nederland, Colorado, who calls himself a "stay-near-home dad." Donahue also has a successful career as an adventure photographer and writer. This avid skier got into climbing as a kid in the 1970s and pursued climbing journalism because climbing "occurred in isolation, [without an] audience, so cllmbing's writers and photographers were the only connection between the experience and the rest of the world." Donahue is a repeat offender, contributing to Climbing consistently since the 1990s. In this issue, he helped portray Heidi Wirtz ("Heidi Almighty," p.52), a climber Donahue describes as "the real deal." Donahue also recently wrote his first book. Bugaboo Dreams, the story of heli-skiing and its roots. Of his personal relationship to climbing, he says, "[it] has become like a martial art or yoga-a state of mind more than an athletic pursuit."

Craig Demartino

Craig DeMartino A commercial and editorial photographer by trade, Craig DeMartino, 44, learned to climb at a bachelor party in Pennsylvania almost 25 years ago. Later, just four months after visiting Colorado and witnessing the Front Range's climbing bounty, DeMartino packed up and moved to Fort Collins-soon he was climbing daily. Now a resident of Loveiand, Colorado, a small mountain town at 4,982 feet, he continues to climb and write, for this issue penning the starkly personal Roadkill piece "Life and Death on Werk Supp" (p.32), reflecting on a pair of 2008 groundfalls in Eldorado Canyon, Colorado, as well as his own 2002 accident on Whiteman in Rocky Mountain National Park, a fall that claimed his right leg below the knee. People commonly ask DeMartino how or why he came back to climbing after his accident, "God made climbing part of my DNA," he explains. "It would be like not breathing to not climb."

Tom Slater Nipomo

Tom Slater

His first rope was a chopped, half-length hand-me-down from a girlfriend's brother. Still, Tom Slater, 42, found a way to make it work climbing at Castle Rock State Park in the Santa Cruz Mountains of California, where he got his start almost 23 years ago. Leading routes with five biners, two chocks, and a two-foot sling acclimatized him to runouts and creative placements, skills that helped him send routes across the United States and Europe in his dirtbagging days. Now Slater lives in Nipomo, California, with his wife and kids-Owen Yose-mlte, 6, and Charlotte West, 2 - and works as a middle school English teacher and guidebook author. He leveraged his guidebook expertise to write this issue's Mileage (p.75) on the central California coast and its bouldering and route climbing. With Owen Yosemite, who already climbs 5.7, Slater continues to explore granite slabs and send new routes in the Shuteye Ridge area of central California.

Beth Wald

Minnesota-native Beth Wald started climbing innocently enough at her local areas of Devil's Lake and Taylor Falls, but on an early road trip to Devils Tower, she fell in with Todd Skinner's gypsy band of climbers and life was never the same. Wald learned the road-tripping ropes on a shoestring budget and a regimen ruled by the motto, "climb through the pain." Though she was soon one of the few women in the country leading 5.12, in Skinner's crew she was no ropegun. To earn her keep, Wald started writing articles and shooting photos, doing her part "to keep the team on the road." Based out of Boulder, Colorado, Wald now travels the world for clients like National Geographic and Smithsonian; favorite subjects include the gaucho culture of Argentina, and her current project, the Wakhan Corridor of Afghanistan. Despite the risk to her reputation, she agreed to dust off some of her 1980s lycra shots for our 40th Anniversary feature on p.42.

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