Family Rock Climbing Program, 8-12-2012

7+ years ago Karen and Dan took a couple climbing lessons with EMSCS. It was either my 1st or 2nd season guiding and I climbed with them at Square Ledge and Cathedral that summer. Yesterday, after a 7 year hiatus (for good reason),  they returned with their amazing 7 year old daughter, Catherine. A regular hiker, who preferred scrambling, and National Park Camper, Catherine was eager to try her hand at real rock climbing. We geared up, and after stopping by a very wet Whitehorse Ledge made out way over to Cathedral Ledge for some top-roping on the Thin Air Face.

Despite being a little intimidated by the wet steepness Catherine made multiple attempts on the 80 foot route

Showing off her knot tying skills

Looking for the next handhold

Karen remembered the excitement from our climbs to the top of the cliff 7 years ago

Catherine enjoyed swinging side to side while hanging from the rope the most

The weather remained nice with bits of sun poking through, and since Dan and Karen were eager to checkout Whitehorse Ledge we headed back over to that cliff hoping the sun had dried things out a bit. We were not disappointed.

Ready to go at the Launch Pad

Dad and Daughter tackling the 1st pitch of Standard Route

Hanging out at the “Toilet Bowl” belay

Very comfortable 300 feet off the ground

It turned out that rappelling was actually the most fun part of the day


Heading back to the car, all smiles

It was a fantastic day with a great family that I hope to see again soon. I can’t wait to have adventures like this with my own son Alex. Keep an eye on my more personal blog,, as I am sure he’ll be spending a little time at the cliff this Fall.

About David Lottmann

David grew up skiing in the Whites and started climbing at a summer camp just north of Mt. Washington when he was 16. Those first couple of years solidified climbing as a lifetime passion. From 1996-2000 he served in the USMC, and spent the better part of those years traveling the globe (18 countries). After returning to civilian life he moved to North Conway to focus on climbing and was hired in 2004 as a Rock and Ice Instructor. Since then Dave has taken numerous AMGA courses, most recently attaining a Single Pitch Instructor. He has completed a Level 3 AIARE avalanche course, is a Level 2 Course Leader, holds a valid Wilderness First Responder and is a member of Mountain Rescue Service. When David isn't out guiding he enjoys mountain biking, kayaking, hiking, backcountry skiing, trying to cook something new once a week and sampling new micro-brews. He lives in Conway, NH with his wife Michelle, son Alex, and daughter Madalena.
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