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A Very Big Week

by Don

This past week was a big one for me. Last Monday I interviewed Jean Aschenbrenner, who is the first woman to climb all 637 peaks in Colorado over 13,000 feet. She completed them in 1993 after 16 years of peak bagging. Just imagine how many pairs of hiking shoes she went through! Amazing feet – pun intended.

I also interviewed Loretta Claiborne, a special Olympian who runs, plays tennis, skates, golfs, plays basketball, plays soccer, and spends much of her time volunteering and helping others. I can’t wait to tell you more about her. Stay tuned.

I interviewed Diane Jones-Bolton who is one of the people who joined the 50-k Active/Athlete Challenge. Diane joined the Challenge to help stay motivated and to hold herself accountable. She has the  goal of running 30 marathons in 30 states in the next year. Go Diane.

I held a copy of my book Dream It, Live It, Love It: The First 10 Interviews in my hands for the first time. It will be available for sale this week. I’m excited to get it out there.

While writing this book, many people have asked me whether dancers are athletes. Well, yesterday I interviewed Gene GeBauer who is 75 and danced for many years on Broadway in shows like Camelot, Hello Dolly, Once Upon A Mattress, and others. His account of the training, dedication, joy, and competition that he experienced in dancing has confirmed my conclusion that dancers can be considered athletes. I want to take tap dancing lessons now!

Below is a profile of George Hurley who is somewhat of a legend in rock climbing in the US. As a rock climber, I am forever grateful for people like George who spend their time and energy establishing rock climbing routes that the rest of us enjoy so much. Thanks George, and I hope you enjoy his profile.

The following is a brief profile of one of the interviewees in the upcoming book, Dream It, Live It, Love It. The full intreview and insights gained by the author will be shared in the book to be published at a future date. To see future interviewee profiles via email and to stay updated on the status of the book, use the widget at the bottom right of this page to subscribe.


George Loves the Adventure of Finding New Lines (Photo by Anne Skidmore)

George Loves the Adventure of Finding New Lines (Photo by Anne Skidmore)

George Hurley is a 74 year old rock climber and ice climber who lives in Wonalancet, New Hampshire, and who has established hundreds of new rock and ice climbing routes across the country since the 1960’s. In high school, George ran track and played football, and began climbing when a graduate school classmate took him climbing up Cussin’ Crack in Boulder Canyon, Colorado. He liked it so much, that he became a climber that day. George went on to teach English at the high school and college levels, and in 1974 changed from teaching English to teaching rock and ice climbing as a guide. George was a guide in Colorado for several years before moving to New Hampshire, where he has been guiding for various organizations ever since.

George still guides rock and ice climbs, and establishes new climbing routes in New England. He loves the adventure of seeing a new line and finding out whether he can climb it or not. George invited me to climb with him the next time I am in New England, and I plan on taking him up on that offer. Being a climber myself, I thank George and others like him who spend countless hours finding, cleaning, and making available new climbs for other climbers to enjoy. Thanks George! 

{ 2 comments… read them below or add one }

Cheryl September 24, 2009 at 7:18 am

Hi Don,
I’m so glad you’re considering dancers to be athletes too. The definition of an athlete according to my dictionary is “a person trained in exercises, games or contests requiring physical strength, skill, stamina, speed, etc.”

For me, athletes are people who engage in physical activity requiring skill development learned over time. George, the rock climber is living life juicy! Still climbing at age 74! Still seeking new lines and blazing new trails. Truly amazing!


FRITH April 6, 2010 at 8:58 pm

Met George in about 1975, we hired him as a guide thru Bob Culp, and to this day has been a light which any one would shine through, thanks George, from some prairie boys…

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