Dr. Bill Weber became the oldest man to climb Devils Tower a day after his 91st birthday. Facebook photo.
Two weeks ago, a Florida man became the oldest person to summit Wyoming’s Devils Tower, a day after his 91st birthday. The climber, Dr. Bill Weber, was accompanied by his two sons, and made an ascent of the 5.7 route Tad. Weber had heard a story about an 87-year-old making the climb last year, and thought he was up to the challenge. The climb took 12 hours, and tested the limits of the party’s endurance.
The rock monolith soaring high above the plains of Northeastern Wyoming has long drawn rock climbers to its summit. The first known ascent of Devils Tower, also known as Bear Lodge or Matȟó Thípila in Lakota, was in 1893 by to local ranchers, who jammed wooden pegs into a crack system to create a ladder to the summit. The first ascent by modern climbing techniques was by the famed Fritz Wiessner in 1937.
Devil's tower seen from the base. NPS photo.
A single drop of blood fell to the snow, making a hollow plop. Halfway up hiking a backcountry run, Dina Mishev stared down at the lone drop of red on white. More blood pooled to the point of her nose. Dina watched as another drop fell, joining the first one on the snow. The blood stared back at her, a reminder of all the reasons why she couldn’t let herself stop climbing. Fresh from her second round of chemo a few days prior, Mishev was actively ignoring the pain, nausea and exhaustion
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