Tom Valone, Founder

In January of 1974 my business partner and I sponsored famous alpinist Royal Robbins for a slide show.  After the lecture, we hauled him off to Table Rock so we could sandbag him on climbs we had worked on for months and years.  After unfairly humbling him in our familiar backyard gym, we hit the sack in our tents in the meadow that then served as the Table Rock parking lot.  My zip-o-gauge said 4 below, and we could scarcely stand in the heavy winds.  I elected to cook my dinner stew in my tent.  Just as it came to a simmer, a huge wind gust blasted my tent, popped the stakes and lifted my legs. The stove with soup on top along with my gear was tossed up into the small enclosed space in the tent.  What a mess.  Not to worry; I got the stove put out, and thirty minutes later, I picked up the frozen “pieces” of soup and re-heated my meal.

Now for a southern boy, that was COLD!