Widely used by climbers and bikers for years, Julbo performance eyewear is starting to make its presence more widely known in the suburbs of Boston where I teach full-time.
Over the past few months, it seems as though I have had the same interaction four or five times with different people. I would be standing, wearing my Apple Green Julbo Stunt glasses with the Blue Spectron 3+ lens, and waiting for my kids’ bus to arrive. A friend or colleague would stop to say hello and then comment on my glasses.
“Whoa, that’s quite a color,” he or she would say.
“Try them on,” I would reply. After hesitating for a moment, he or she would comply.
“Wow! These lenses are awesome! They don’t make it too dark. What kind of glasses are these?”
For almost two years now, the Julbo Stunt has been my go-to glasses for numerous outdoor activities – climbing, biking, hiking – or for simply walking around town (or bus-stop). These lightweight glasses wrap around your eyes, leaving no large gaps so that no matter which way you move the lenses protect your eyes. The GripNose and slim GripTech temples wrap around snugly, but not too snugly, to enable the glasses to stay on your face when climbing or biking. In addition, the Stunt fits comfortably under a helmet for a long day of climbing or biking without hurting behind the ears.
The lenses are fantastic! When climbing on the slabs in the full sun, I barely notice them but remain thankful that I am not squinting from the glare off the rock. While fighting the reflection from White Mountains, the blue Spectra 3+ lenses, never making it too dark. In fact, on a recent trip to Tennessee, even though it was slightly overcast, I put my Stunts on to keep the small gnats out of my eyes and could still see small footholds just fine.
Alex rapping down in style
While I try to be careful and take care of my sunglasses, because I am using them for activities like climbing, my Stunts have endured their fair share of mileage. Nonetheless, these glasses have taken quite the abuse and have held up through it all. If you are looking for a pair of performance glasses for the upcoming spring and summer, I would highly recommend the Stunts.
Jerry Gale and I traveled to the Canadian Rockies for ten days of ice climbing in early March. This trip was our grand finale for our 2015/16 ice climbing season. Over the winter we climbed, we trained, and readied ourselves for the cold difficult ice routes of the north. Upon our arrival and through out the trip we both were truly surprised at what we found. The temperatures remained constant, hovering around freezing levels, the ice was generally fat and sticky, and the routes plentiful with so many to choose!!!
The Canadian Rockies viewed from Banff
Our first day we found ourselves walking up to this local favorite – The Pilsnar Pillar. This gem was our prize climb, right up the center pillar.
Inside the cave behind Pilsnar Pillar.
Wicked Wanda is located in the South Ghost area. The Ghost areas comprised of two main areas the north and south. Wicked Wanda was our first choice as it was the easier to get to. Easy being barred by a 10 mile dirt road, the infamous big hill, and gravel river crossings.
The north Ghost is another story. Both Jerry and I wanted this place in a bad way. Home to the Sorcerer pictured above and another classic called Hydrophobia. We settled on this unknown route, the Sorcerer. We were gifted with this picture as were rounded the bend early in the morning.
A spectacular afternoon on the Sorcerer!!!
My friend Dale made this Sorcerer journey possible. As you can see the a rental car would not make these river crossings. Dale had the right rig for the task the Toyota Tacoma in 4×4 low.
Snowline – the center, Moonlight the left were two long flows of ice in tip top shape. This ice climbing area was south of Canmore in the Evan- Thomas Creek area in the Kananaskis foothills.
Snowline – a skinny route that spiraled its way to the top
Mammut in action – the Nordwand GTX Boot, Trion Guide Pack, Neon Light Pack, Nordwand Gloves and much more. Thanks to the Mammut and the Vermont staff for all the help gearing up for this fine adventure.
Our grand finale was Curtain Call. A brilliant climb in our minds. We approached in the dark and the first light displayed this – a very technical looking ice route with an overhang at the top. We both new this would be our grand prize for the season.
This is our third and final pitch. Beautiful stemming up the corner leads to the imposing roof section. Picked out by others, the transition over the overhang was doable for us.
Jerry topping out high above the Icefields Parkway.
Wild ice formations on the Curtain Call – Canadian Rockies.
Jerry a long time partner who is committed to the sport. Whether it be rock, ice or mountain climbs Jerry seeks out the cleanest line. We both work together to climb the prize lines of the area together.
So much thanks to Jerry.
Jackson and I have climbed together since the summer of 2010. It all started on the warm sunny rocks of Rumney, then led to bigger routes at Whitehorse. As the years went by Jackson decided he could not wait until the summer anymore. He was determined to get out in winter which meant he was in for a try on a mountain/ice climb in NH.
The NH mountains and ice climbs are no easy task. The winter environment is harsh and the terrain is usually very rough, this all adds up to pretty tough conditions for anyone. Jackson is 10 years of age and for most kids this would not be a fun time. Jackson keeps focused as he climbs up the mountain while maintaining a steady pace. On the ice he climbs like a champ, he overcomes each difficult section one at a time and always going for the top.
Yesterday was a huge achievement for Jackson, Mike and I as we ascended the Cleft on a very cold winter day. Jackson never voiced one complaint, he just kept moving up the mountain one kick, one stick at a time.
For me it is totally awesome to have this opportunity to work with Jackson – a young climber/skier with a huge Quest for Adventure!!!
Three is good company – a fine day in the mountains.
On approach to the Cleft on Mt Willard.
Jackson equipped and ready for ice climbing in the mountains
The Cleft – a deep chasm choked with ice – amazing!!!
Jackson and Mike climbing together up the narrow Cleft.
The Final top out onto level ground – time for a recharge with hot drinks and food.
On our way in to the Cleft we passed a beautiful climb – the Rocket in Crawford Notch.
Thanks to Jackson and Mike for closing out 2014 with this exciting day in the mountains.
This Saturday, Eric and Amy came to Rumney to take a step in their climbing experience: leading.
We started the day in the Meadows on Mom”s Pancake to warm up and talk generally about lead climbing. After, we headed over to the Parking Lot Wall and hopped on Glory Jean’s.
Stopping for a snack and water, we practiced clipping techniques and spoke further about setting anchors before giving A Week With Pete a go.
Eric looked solid with his climbing, rope management, and anchoring.
With a little more time in the day, we hiked up to Dirtigo where we climbed, led, and rappelled, broadening the skill set.
A lap on the Wimpy Gilman was a fine finish to the afternoon.
Thanks Eric and Amy for a fantastic day on the rock!
Todd Goodman MMG
A big shout out is in store for the MMG guides.
Thanks very much for attending the spring training day this season. This day is where and when the MMG Guide team gets together to Raise the Bar. By reviewing our practices, discussing new techniques, lots of hands on with new and previous skills, and general fun times cragging on the rocks the team comes together and tightens up the MMG guiding operation.
L to R: Derrek Anderson, Phil Thalheimer,Derek Doucet,Steve Cooney, Alex Teixeira, Todd Goodman, and Mike Leathem
Missing – not forgotten are: Erik Thatcher, Jim Gagne, Matt Shove.
Our Sponsors Mammut, Julbo, Five Ten – came through again – in a big way!!!
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On approach to Jimmy Cliff area.
Discussing the descent technique options.
MMG’s team – we have been together for many years which says a lot.
Good friends, good times = good guiding and instruction.
The Gi Gi and the Connecticut Hitch
Phil managing the station and transitioning to the descent.
Great day getting together – Thank you all.
Yesterday was an absolutely stellar day of the stone. Brilliant sunshine, a light breeze, crisp dry rock gave Jerry and I the go ahead for sports action on Whitehorse. The Julbo Stunt glasses were on board to keep the glare out of my eyes – my guide job for the day was to assist Jerry in leading the way to the top. I needed a good visual from below to point out a few key placements on the sparsely protected route – a Whitehorse specialty.
Pitch one starting off the launch pad – easy slabs lead to the anchor 150 feet up and right.
Jerry keeping his focus on the typical long run outs on moderate terrain.
Simple anchors on the bolted station were solid and fast to set and remove.
Taking this place for Granted – never – a special area for all to enjoy.
BD Cams placed in good solid rock, surface area excellent and direction of pull considered.
Crystal pocket belay area.
Headed out to Lunch ledge – long runout on easy terrain leads to great gear before the steep climbing.
Jerry and I on top – enjoying views on the valley and Mt Washington in the distance.
Mammut – Innovative Rock and Alpine equipment for all our climbs.
Julbo – The World needs your vision!!!