Jason Griffith

About Blake Herrington

Blake Herrington learned to climb while living in Bellingham. He has spent time living in Colorado and Stehekin, WA between expeditions to Alaska, BC, and Patagonia. He lives in Leavenworth, WA where he waits tables, writes articles, and climbs throughout the Cascades between trips to farther-flung spots. He counts himself among the best camp chefs he's had the opportunity to climb with.

Index Climber’s Festival – Celebrate What Was Saved

Five years ago, the future of Washington’s premiere crag was in doubt. Long owned by a private citizen, the heart of Index’s Lower Town Wall was closed for climbing. Index’s world-famous climbing routes draw users from across Washington, as well as globe-trotting athletes eager to test themselves against the notorious sandbags. But in September of 2009, no-trespassing signs popped up around the cliff during the prime autumn climbing season, and rumors swirled of a potential sale and quarrying operation that [...]

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Jetboil Sol – A Major Upgrade Gets it Right by Blake Herrington

When the Jetboil Personal Cooking System first came onto the market in 2004, it was truly a “game changer” for climbers. The system (originally around 15oz before fuel) wasn’t any lighter than a small cannister stove and cookpot, but its genius was the integration of stove, lighter, burner, and 1liter cookpot that would al click together into a single unit. For climbers rapidly breaking out the stove on a snowy belay ledge, or squeezing it into a cramped Firstlight or [...]

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Jetboil Alpine Cuisine by Blake Herrington

There is no denying the convenience of dinner in a bag. The makers of pre-packaged “backpacker” meals know this, and make ease-of-use a primary selling point. But Snickers or meal-replacement bars are convenient as well, yet we don’t see those being labeled as “diner for two” despite often having nearly as many calories. An accepted rule of thumb for maximizing backcountry food efficiency is to stick with products that contain at least 100 calories per ounce, yet many of the [...]

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Forget that Bulk Webbing by Blake Herrington

Six common pieces of gear and why you’re better off leaving them behind.

Blake Herrington rappels in the Mendenhall Towers, Alaska. He and partner constructed this rappel line and each rappelled it 3 times in the course of a week, using just 6mm cord and no rappel rings.
Backpackers cut the handles off their toothbrushes to save weight. Alpinist just don’t brush. But while we meticulously save grams for multi-day trips, many of us carry far too much gear around on our harnesses for a day at the crag, attempting a hard lead, or an afternoon of multi-pitching. Before leaving the car or tieing into the rope, analyze your gear and strip off the items that aren’t vital. You’ll climb harder and have more fun.

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Alpine Belay by Blake Herrington

The GriGri as a an all-around tool for the mountains Skinny sport climbers know and love the Petzl GriGri. Though they smoke cigarettes and warm up on 5.13. They’re not interested in glacier climbs or multipitch ridge scrambles. And the folks who do train for these routes often eschew the weight and singular purpose of such a heavy belay device. But that doesn’t mean that those of us who are interested in the mountains (and who don’t climb 5.13) shouldn’t [...]

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