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Jimmy Dunn

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I had a long talk with Jimmy Dunn last night. I talk with him several times a year and we always revert back to some of his epic climbs of the past.

Most of the locals know of his N.H. climbs but I'm sure Jimmy is most proud of his amazing climbs in the Black Canyon, the Desert, and the 1st ascent-solo of the Cosmos, on El Cap.

He told me details of the 1st ascent of Stoned Oven, in the Black Canyon, which features 5.11* face and off-width cracks with sh---it pro. He repeated the route years later with Dean Potter, and Dean couldn't believe how hard the off-widths were.
 His 1st ascent of the Diagonal, in the Black with Earl Wiggins was perhaps the most gripping tale I have ever heard!!
(Earl did the 1st ascent of Super Crack), before cams were invented.
I wish that I had a tape recorder, since Jimmy is quite a story teller.

I could go on and on about other epics Jimmy has told me, but few know that before Jimmy soloed the Cosmos, Bridwell had gone up a few pitches on it; as well as Robbins, trying to do a solo ascent. Bridwell had threatened to break Jimmy's arms if he soloed the route, but after Jimmy succeeded, and came down to Camp 4, who does he  spot but Bridwell standing there.

Jimmy told me that Bridwell was the LAST person he wanted to meet, on his return, but to Jimmy's surprise, Bridwell came up to him, shook his hand and said, let me cook you a meal.

Robbins wrote Jimmy a letter soon after stating that Jimmy's solo was the most impressive climb ever done in the U.S., up to that point.

Jimmy was one hell of a climber, and a great story teller!!

the most 'under the radar american climber' ?  i'd say so.... just a great climber and person.

The Prow was a hotly contested climb, John Bragg almost got it..almost..same with Possessed and.. and

When  you go to the Black or anywhere in the desert,  the Jimmie stories start before you get there.......the one handed ascents.. the 5.12 wide with  tube chocks  etc

and of course- "there is nothing like a porsche on a mountain pass "

pm'd you SA

Admin Al:
great stories guys. Jimmy Dunn certainly is a legend.

A good NH story-

We were wndering around the South Butt, maybe 1980' or so and run into Jimmie,Ed and the female who shall not be named. it was f/a of that 11A by Looselips  and she says "oh, it;s really hard.. i fell off"
Jimmie-  " there's more up there than you can see".. Did it first first 11 and downrated to 10C

under the radar? Not for me, but then I'm kind of a climbing geek: I've got all the Climbings from #50 up to a few years ago, a hundred or so Mountains, and pretty much all the R&Is until Jackson pissed me off a few years ago. (I think I astonished George Hurley when I ran into him at the base of Dracula in Feb. and brought up stuff from an article Climbing did on him in the mid-80s). I first ran across Dunn in Randall's Vertigo Games, and then I'd see him referenced all over the desert, Black Canyon, and CO. His NE exploits didn't even register, but it was pretty clear he was the kind of hard core bad ass that I wanted to be, guys who pushed the envelope on adventure and commitment at a high grade, guys like Rotert and Bachar, and Dunn. Those guys generated tales. Somehow, the fact that some skinny punk manages to climb 40' of bolted blankness after weeks of trying just doesn't create the same inspiration.


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