The Giving Bolt

A Message from Jimmy Keithley, SLCA Wasatch Anchor Replacement Initiative Committee Chair

Well here we are old bolt….

Let me just say this before I remove you. You should be proud because great care was taken when you were placed. Questions were asked such as “Was this the best spot for you? Was there any place for passive pro? Would you be chopped? Would the coming onslaught of climbers pull you out? Would the harsh weather and corrosive environment weaken your strength?”

And yet you have endured so much abuse over the years…. the hang dogs, the gumbys who put crappy bail beaners on you, the spandex clad climbers of late 80s and early 90s who yo yo’ed you to death, and yet through it all you have hung in there (literally). It hasn’t been all bad though you have seen some amazing things over your lifetime. First accents, first leads, first on-sites and climbers of all walks of life who chose you to protect themselves. What a privilege! There has been priceless moments, where an intimidated leader has clipped you, followed by a deep sigh of relief. Now I know you have been around for a long time, and that your tired of everyone hanging on you. Like many of us you have worked far past your retirement age, without a complaint or budge. Sure you have had a little work done, a tightening of your nut or a new hanger! But it’s still you, your guts are rusting and your strength isn’t what it used to be. But hey, don’t you worry, we won’t replace you with some cheap plated steal knock off. We will use the best hardware available, maybe a sexy wave glue in, possibly a fancy Legacy bolt or maybe even some 316 Euro stainless steal! But wait, your life is far from over! We have plans for you, oh yes! We might use you as a plant holder, a coat rack, a trophy for a collection, a bottle opener, a key chain or use you to educate others. Maybe just maybe…… Brittany Griffith will put you in the Patagonia Store in Brooklyn and a Hipster will gawk at your rustic beauty as they clip eco friendly clothes to you. Either way, your legacy will live on in our hearts and racks. And we thank you for your decades of service to the climbing community….. Now where’s my torque wrench? Let’s get you the hell out of here before you kill someone.

By Jimmy Keithley, SLCA Wasatch Anchor Replacement Initiative Committee Chair

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