5.10′s media event was held in Bend, Oregon this week to learn about the "Brand of the Brave", do some climbing, mountain bike riding, photo shoots, and smoozing with our new journalist friends:) – (Outdoor magazine, Men’s Journal, Backpacker, Climber, theGearcaster.com, Oregonian, Washington Post, decline , etc).
5.10 sponsors most all of the best climbers/flyers/ mountain bikers in the World, so we also met the legendary Dean Potter, Mayan Smith Gobot, JT Holmes, etc. Coming from the biking world, I have to admit that I knew very little about climbing and it's heroes, but met some people who defiantly opened my eyes to a new world and were very inspirational. There are a lot of parallels in sport, so there is something to learn from everyone.
It was a humbling experience to climb for the first time at smith rock. Experiencing all the equipment for the first time, the textures of the rocks, the problem solving strategy once up there, the tunnel vision with a rock a few inches from your nose, etc. It was also probably the most bad ass introduction of all time to climbing with this crew. Dean was our belay for one climb, which I’m sure was hilarious for him to watch a beginner from the perspective of a guy who climbs without a rope and who has done things in this environment that no other human has wanted to or could do. Even his dog- Whisper, did some climbing:) Lives it.
Anyway, The people who work for 5.10 are super down to earth and accomplished athletes as well, so plenty safe, but still the initial fear for a first timer is there. Bryn , Carson Storch, and I were there representing downhill and slope-style MTB, so we were really out of our element. By the end of the day Bryn made it up a 5.9 route, Carson attempted 5.10 and didn't get too far after an hour, and I did a 5.7 or 8 I think. It was mostly a mentally draining thing to do, because of the balance of fear and focus. Once you know what you are doing I am sure the death grip eases off a tad:) 5.10 is named after a difficult climbing grade, which is embarrassing to admit I didn't know, but I learned all kinds of things this week about a world I had no clue about. 5.10 also is the only brand in the world with the perfect sticky rubber recipe, so they continue to dominate in climbing and MTB where their product is a game changer. The merge with Adidas will not effect the core values of the company, just adds better distribution, vendors, etc
For the final day, everyone went on a mountain bike ride with Cog Wild tours. None of the pro climbers came, but it was nice to be back in familiar territory with the roles reversed this time. Everyone there was a specialist at something, whether it be about products, rubber, reviewing gear, climbing , or mountain biking. Just really fun week laughing with a fantastic company:)
It was a great opportunity for athletes to get to spend this kind of quality time with our sponsors. Thank you 5.10!!