Photo by Truc Allen with views from Rainier.
We're excited to be heading up to Oakley's home state of Washington to screen Brave New Wild at the Vertical World Gym in Seattle on August 4th in partnership with the American Alpine Club Cascades Section! There will be the film screening, free beer and cider, and half the proceeds go to the AAC! Get your tickets here. To get you excited, here's a little Q&A with Section Chair Truc Allen (pronounced 'true') about the amazing Seattle climbing scene, what the AAC does up in the beautiful Cascades, and how he ended up climbing in this part of the world.
BNW: How did you end up in Seattle, and how did you get involved with the Cascades Section of the AAC?
Truc: One day, my wife and I were sitting in our farmhouse in New Castle, VA (pop. 153), and we decided "let's move to the Northwest." Neither of us had been there, nor did we have jobs when we hit the road. We packed up our gear into the moving van, trailered our truck, boats, and bikes and made the voyage. Mountains and climbing have been a huge part of our lives and is actually how we met, so naturally we were drawn to some of the most beautiful mountains in the country.
I started working as a photographer and emcee with AAC West Coast Manager, Eddie Espinosa, and former Section Chair, Becca Vande Hei, at a couple of their events. We had a great time working together and I kind of inadvertently fell into the Section Chair position when Becca left...and the rest is history!
"We packed up our gear into the moving van, trailered our truck, boats, and bikes and made the voyage. Mountains and climbing have been a huge part of our lives and is actually how we met, so naturally we were drawn to some of the most beautiful mountains in the country."
BNW: What areas does the Cascades Section of the AAC cover?
Truc: The Cascades Section is looking to expand its focus, as well as my role from Section Chair to Membership Coordinator for Washington. It's going to be a pretty big change and I'm excited to see how we can grow through a more concerted effort in outreach and developing chapters throughout the state.
BNW: What sort of things does AAC Cascades Section do? What’s your role in the Cascades climbing community?
In my own words, the Club focuses on three things: community, stewardship, and collaboration in supporting the love for climbing. One of my biggest passions is bringing communities together by organizing events ranging from laid back pub nights to climbing festivals and fundraisers.
As for my role in the Cascades climbing community...hmmm. That's a tricky question. I serve as a board member to the Washington Climbers Coalition in addition to my role with the AAC, so I think most would say I bring stewardship, advocacy, and awareness of what's facing our lives as climbers. Some of my closer friends would say my role for the community would be bringing sarcasm, an acquired taste of crass, and good ol' climber debauchery (socially acceptable of course). I would say I'm right in the middle.
BNW: What’s important about having the AAC in the Cascades area?
Truc: Seattle and the Cascades include some of the most beautiful places around. With 20 million visiting tourist a year and as one of the fastest growing cities in the country, we're seeing an impressive growth and user impact across the board. I see this presenting opportunities to work and develop relationships with climbers, land managers, as well as related businesses and organizations to keep climbing around long after we're gone.
"I think Washington climbers are some of the nicest and MOST committed mountain-lovers I've ever met. The climbing, combined with the dramatic landscapes is pretty mind blowing. All the time."
AAC version of Olympics: throw the bouldering pad the farthest and win a bouldering pad!
BNW: What do you love about Washington Climbing?
One of the best things about living here as a boulderer/rock/alpine climber and ski mountaineer, is the tremendous range of people I get to meet. I think Washington climbers are some of the nicest and MOST committed mountain-lovers I've ever met. The climbing, combined with the dramatic landscapes is pretty mind blowing. All the time.
BNW: What’s your ideal long weekend adventure look like?
I think this answer will be constantly changing. Right now, it'd be to take a ski tour out in the Cascades with one of my guide buddys, followed by a lap on a Liberty Bell link up with my punk rock band mate, and then taking a nice deep water soloing boat trip with my wife and son at Banks Lake on the east side of the Cascades.
BNW: Will you and the AAC be at the screening? What can we look forward to?
For sure! Wouldn't miss it. As with all of our events, our biggest aspiration is to provide experiences that all climbers, regardless of discipline or skill level, feel included and leave with good feelings and memories for years to come. Apparently, there's this climbing film that won a bunch of awards and has sold out shows across the country...
Heck yes! Thank you, Truc. See you soon! If you haven't gotten your ticket to the screening yet, get it here! Stay tuned for a Q&A with the hosts of this screening, Vertical World, up next!