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lander climbing


#WornWear Wagon!!!!



Just in case you haven't looked too closely at the schedule we wanted to remind you that @patagonia is not hosting the clothing swap at this years Trade Fair. BUT, they are bringing the #WornWear Wagon! Check out what they have to say about it: 


We are getting in the #WornWear spirit! Check out the stories ripped and stained into Sean Villanueva O’Driscoll’s clothing. 



Dru Mack on Rhino Skin Solutions

Dru Mack is on the rise. Know for his constant psych and his ever increasing climbing prowis Dru is a boon to the climbing community.

When your home crag is the Red River Gorge, you regularly experience rainforest climates. Sometimes the humidity surpasses the temperature, leaving you sweating and wishing you were swimming in a lake rather than wading through the thick Kentucky air. For a long time I dealt with these poor conditions with extreme try hard and loads of chalk, like a block a day…

I first started using Rhino Skin Solutions while trying my hardest route ‘Southern Smoke’ 14c. The 70 foot route is pure power endurance, endless running on decent holds. I found it almost impossible to stop and shake anywhere, which also means my sweaty hands would go many moves without getting any chalk on them. Friends of mine told me about Rhino Skin and I quickly got some, using the Dry Spray and Performance cream religiously to dry out my skin. It helped, my hands were drier I could climb the route more efficiently and chalk up less, saving me valuable time on the wall. Since then I have been a huge fan of Rhino Skin Products.


My normal routine is:

Dry Spray -Two good sprays on both hands, two nights in a row before a big climbing day. I find that using this two nights in a row dries out my hands way more than just one night, but I try to not use it all the time because I don't want my skin to get too dry and crack.


Performance Cream- This is definitely my favorite product. I use this every almost every night before bed. I might skip a night or two every once in awhile depending how dry my hands are and how much climbing I am doing.


Repair Cream-I use the repair cream after a day of climbing. Wash the chalk off your hands and lather some on. This helps the skin grow back without having that feeling that you can’t touch anything. I like to have some waiting in the car for me.






Belay Optics Is A Baby Birthed In A Basement

Belay Optics is a baby being birthed in a basement in Firestone Colorado.  The company is the brainchild of Elyn Lytton a researcher, Mom, quilter, and climber.  She wears prescription eyeglasses and was frustrated that belay glasses, presently on the market, were “focused” on a limited user population that couldn’t wear sunglasses or prescription eyewear while belaying.  Her sons and daughter-in-law also climb and wear glasses, so, to say this idea did not have a slight self-serving component would be untrue.  Going into her home climbing gym (Boulder Rock Club) in Boulder Colorado or any other popular climbing venue revealed a stark reality…..  There are tons of climbers that wear glasses and would be psyched to find an adjustable clip-on solution.  Several years of development, sourcing suppliers, evaluating materials, and obtaining a patent ensued.  The result is a highly adjustable, optically crisp, innovative design that eliminates the need to wear two pairs of glasses while belaying. 

So, Elyn did this all on her own, Right?  Not!!!  Her entire family has been involved including her Husband Jim, sons Alan and Seth and daughter-in-law Neely Quinn.  Long days and late nights have been spent on e-mails to suppliers and customers, assembling glasses by hand, thermal testing in cars and freezers, packaging, shipping, social media, accounting, business planning and development, networking, doing shows, creating collateral materials, learning about graphic design, deciding on swag to give away and still maintaining a balance with life, family, jobs, and fitness. Yeah, did we mention that this is all being done around working a full time job at a biodiagnostics firm in Boulder Colorado.  Ah, the life of the budding entrepreneur!  Gotta love it!  

Okay, enough about the tough stuff.  Let’s talk about how Elyn’s invention has helped her customers. Many Belay Optics customers said they couldn’t use fixed prism glasses without getting nauseous or dizzy and the adjustable aspect of the Belay Optics system eliminated their problem.  As with most belay glasses, the common malady known as “ belayers neck” is relieved and users find the overall comfort of the glasses exceptional.  The gang at Belay Optics are open to new concepts and design ideas that are submitted by the climbing community and other users that find the need to see above their heads.  Input from electricians, window washers, and painters has also been appreciated as these are just a few of the trades that have benefitted from Belay Optics' products.  

Most importantly, Belay Optics is grounded in a core principle of giving back to the community.  As the company grows it will be donating time, resources, and money to promote causes that focus on the climbing community and our natural resources.  At the 2017 International Climbing Festival in Lander Wyoming, Belay Optics is looking forward to raising money for a non-profit that supports the climbing community and environment. Stay tuned for more details on the “B.O. Slogan Contest” debuting at the festival.  If you have a great slogan for us please share it now

We believe you the climbers will be our best resource for feedback. Please, let us know what you think of our present products and share your pain points, wants, and needs so we can bring you the designs and features that deliver the greatest benefits to enhance your belaying experience.  We have begun reaching out to local US based suppliers and designers so we can begin developing our NextGen products so if you have crazy wild ass ideas we want to hear about them so we can bring you more innovative solutions that are functional, affordable, durable, and just plain awesome.  

Come and join us at the July 12-16, 2017 International Climbers’ Festival in Lander Wyoming!  Be suret to drop by our booth at the Art Crawl and Trade fair and ask us for your complementary Belay Optics sticker. Oh yeah, and if your name is drawn from our “B.O. Slogan” contest winner bucket, you may score some awesome swag and even a free set of our Belay Optics fully adjustable clip on belay glasses!!!  See you at the festival and be sure to come by the Belay Optics booth, say “Hi”, try a pair on for size,  and give us your opinion!  

If you live within driving distance to Firestone Colorado, we’d love to meet with you and just get to know you better.  We are all about developing relationships!  Are you connected to an outfitter, climbing gym, pro-climber, or media representative that is looking for a rags to riches story in the making, please help us out by providing us with their complete contact information including phone, e-mail, and a personal introduction would really be awesome!  

Our ultimate goal is to see that you are blown away by Belay Optics in every aspect of the customer experience!  If you love us, please go to and leave your luv for us.  We also encourage you to share, like, comment, and #tag us on Facebook  and Instagram . 

Thanks from the gang at Belay Optics!

Written by Jim Lytton


Small Town WY

Small Town WY

Former CB&T Bank president and longtime Lander resident, Carl Huhnke sings high praise for the International Climbers Festival, Todd Skinner, NOLS, and the value of community.


 “It’s just the quality of people”, was Carl’s go-to phrase when I interviewed him about the Climber’s Fest in Lander.  It's a totally inclusive event that the whole town gets excited for, and people come from all over to be a part of.  

 Todd Skinner came to CB&T for a donation to run the first ICF back in 1993, and after a few minutes of talking to Todd and hearing about the community of people involved, Carl “just felt blessed to be a part of it”.  

 “If you look up and down Main street”, you will see many businesses started or run by past climbers and NOLS instructors.  “These people are leaders”, said Carl about the folks that came to Lander to climb and then stayed.

 The Climber’s Festival is now in its 24th year, and though Todd Skinner is no longer with us, the original spirit of adventure and community-oriented fun is alive and well in Lander!

 For more info about the history of the climber’s festival:

Thanks to Nick Knoke for this interview and video! @nickknoke for more photo and video