Jim Bridwell, Yosemite Climbing Pioneer, Dead at 74

Jim “The Chook” Bridwell, one of mountain climbing’s greats, handed peacefully on Feb. sixteen.

Jim bridwell mountain climbing pioneer dies
Record by capability of Wikipedia Ingenious Commons

Jim Bridwell, born July 29, 1944, evolved trendy enormous wall mountain climbing and impressed generations of climbers who came after him.

Bridwell’s record of accomplishments entails thousands of first ascents in Yosemite, with indispensable ascents in Patagonia and Alaska. He evolved trendy wait on mountain climbing methods and primarily based what is likely the most infamous search-and-rescue outfit in the nation, YOSAR.

Bridwell emerged in Yosemite at some level of the mid-60s and promptly started inserting up first ascents up El Cap. He served as a bridge between golden-age Yosemite pioneers admire Royal Robbins and Warren Harding, and the Stone Masters abilities of successfully-known climbers John Bachar, John Long, Ron Kauk, and Dale Bard.

Hiking Icon Jim Bridwell Remembered

Jim Bridwell, heart, with Billy Westbay and John Long; photo by capability of Wikipedia Ingenious Commons

In 1975, he became on the main personnel to climb The Nostril of El Cap in underneath a day, accompanied by John Long and Billy Westbay. This ascent spurred a contest amongst climbers to peep who would maybe well maybe climb it the fastest.

Assorted indispensable ascents consist of the first total climb of the controversial Compressor route in Patagonia on Cerro Torre, and the main ascent of the East Face of the uncovered Moose’s Tooth in Alaska.

All over his heyday, Bridwell became one of the most strongest climbers on this planet. Nevertheless he didn’t conclude young, making his final first ascent on El Cap on the age of fifty seven.

Bridwell died of hepatitis C issues and is survived by his wife, Peggy, and son, Layton. His son started a GoFundMe on the outset of his health issues and described where the disease would maybe well maybe simply have originated. It serves as a lens into the wildly adventurous and fearless persona that became Bridwell.

“My mom suspects he can have shriveled [hepatitis C] from any quantity of his adventures, but more likely than no longer it came from the tattoo he got from the headhunters at some level of his noxious navigation of Borneo assist in the Eighty’s when I became a child,” mentioned Layton.


Beyond a large physique of first ascents, Bridwell leaves on the assist of a legacy all the diagram thru which no Yosemite guidebook is total with out his climbs, and no film of Golden Age mountain climbing history with out his name.

The publish Jim Bridwell, Yosemite Hiking Pioneer, Dull at seventy four regarded first on GearJunkie.

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