Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Ryan Triplett

I vividly remember the last time I spent a weekend and more specifically an evening with Ryan. I really don't think I have laughed as hard since that weekend. Always a colorful time to say the least. Especially when Ryan and Andrew get together, the true colors fly, adding Bryan and John to the mix is almost intoxicating. How could I forget that weekend? I would have to say, in a room, Ryan lit it up, being the most vocal, outgoing and passionate person. He stood out, in a wonderful way. His passion for life beamed from every pore. By the time we left, he had made friends with everyone and had us all convinced that we should go to Mazama the next weekend to check out his new routes. I have to smile when I think back to the conversations that were had over his routes. Now, I must go make up my own mind, are they really these scary (run out on easy climbing...) routes?

Ryan will have forever left his mark on my life because of this weekend. It was Ski to Sea 2008, John was on a ringer of a team, so appropriately named, "High County Hoodlums" along with Cam, Roanne, Bryan, Jen, Andrew, and Ryan. What a group of talented athletes. We hung out all weekend, Andrew, Ryan, Bryan and Jess went to Bellingham High together and go way back. The weekend was full of their stories and prep for the race. Jen, Ryan's amazing wife, a life long successful athlete captivated my curiosity one evening. After that last brief encounter I emailed Jen, eager to tell her what an impact she and her husband had on my attitude toward my new phase of life. I was feeling overwhelmed by my new job, afraid that it was going to devour all my free time, I was afraid that I would no longer have time to focus on my passions and hobbies. I was afraid the working life would cramp my free time. Hah, look at Jen, a working woman and an extraordinary competitive athlete. Ryan.... the most passionate and psyched climber I have ever met. Both also leading very successful careers. What did I have to complain about? These guys are out there living life to the fullest, now I needed to get on that program. I could also have a successful career and passionate about free time hobbies. All it took was on look at this couple to know that there was more to life than the office. I read Jen's blog and the next thing I know I have been working on this one ever since. They are an amazing team. They touched my life and the lives of all they have encountered.

As Cam wrote, "If I had to describe Ryan in one word, it would be "psyched". I have never known anyone with more zest for life than Ryan. From climbing to cycling to hockey to running, Ryan was always up for a good challenge, and loved nothing more than working up a sweat." These are my fond memories of Ryan. I think that he was hands down the most talented person I have been climbing with. Starting with the first time I met him on a trip to Smith Rock with him, Jen, Andrew, Katie, Bryan, Jess, John, and myself. He made climbing look effortless, and at the same time I have never heard anyone swear and scream anymore on a route. His energy ran circles around everyone else. The several times that I have ran into him at Squamish over the years was a sheer delight, sitting in the Squamish parking lot, listening to his ambitious adventures. I always held him the highest respects as a climber, he knew how to push the limits and give it hell. He was the tie that bind in a lot of ways in my climbing world as well. Just a mention of the name Triplett and people knew who you were talking about.

Now there is silence, thoughts, and reflection. We had dinner with Brian and Jess tonight. We talked about Ryan and had some great laughs. How else is the there to remember this great man who was so full of life. All we could do was tell some great stories and be inspired by his flair for climbing and passion for life in general.

Ryan Triplett passed away in a climbing accident in Mazama, Washington on September 7, 2008. I am so honored to have had Ryan as a small part of my life. I know that he and Jen have left a mark on my life, changing it for the better. I know that he has been inspiration for John as well. John can tell you stories of climbing in Index, Ryan rolling up to full Japanese Gardens, like he had done it a million times prior and fly up it. As I sit here and reflect, I wish that John had more of an opportunity to climb with Ryan. I think that they really would have "got some shit done." I would of loved to see the faces of the people at the crag when two clean cut, little guys roll up to the wall in Levis and button down shirts and throw down the hardest line there was. They both would of finished the day with a beer and been dreaming of the adventure for tomorrow.

He was an incredible man. Ryan was a talented climber. Passionate, skilled, talented, and above all... PSYCHED! May we all look to Ryan for motivation and inspiration. Ryan filled his 31 years with all that he had and it was ended all to soon doing something that he loved. Ryan, your candle was a torch... brighter than most and just a bit different.

So here is to you Ryan, may you live on in spirit. May your torch always light the trail of all of all of those who stay an hour too long at the crag and walk home in the dark, may your spirit be with those who dream big and go out and follow their passion. May we look to your memory and remember your zest for life and the zeal you had. We can only dream to be as bold as you Ryan.

Jen and family and friends.... we love you all. May the comfort of each other bring you closer.

Why I am honoured to have known Ryan Triplett

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