Kristian Solem – Wild Times in High Places

Location: Round Table Pizza, 2065 Occidental Road, Santa Rosa

Time & Date: Tuesday, May 2, 2017 @ 7:30 PM (Social hours and free beer for members at 6:30)

Directions: From Highway 101 at Santa Rosa go west on Highway 12 to Stony Point Road Exit. Go straight from the middle lane at the light onto Occidental Road. The Round Table Pizza is on the right just down the road.

Kristian Solem started climbing in the mid 1970’s at the Gunks and ten years later moved to Los Angeles. In California, Kristian visited the usual climbing areas like Tahquitz and Suicide, Joshua Tree and Yosemite. But when he first laid eyes on The Needles, Kristian knew he had found his nirvana. He would go on to climb there every season for three decades. Bouldering at Stoney Point, he met Bob Kamps, who became a mentor for 20 years. Partnerships were forged at Stoney Point with the likes of Herb Laeger, Charlie Crist, Jan McCollum and Guy Keesee, which led to adventures and first ascents at Joshua Tree, Courtright Reservoir, The Needles area and the Gorge of Despair.

Kristian led an alternate life as a mastering engineer, which is a rare job in music production that doesn’t demand long hours for weeks or months at a time. This left him time to train, boulder and go climbing. He kept his lifestyle simple and lean and spent all of his free time on the rock. Kristian has spent years researching, climbing and now authored a climbing guide to the Needles in the Southern Sierra. Today, at age 63, his love affair with California’s beautiful granite is undiminished.

Kristian’s presentation will showcase his time climbing wild places including the Needles, Courtright Reservoir and the Gorge of Despair. “In the paradise of stone on the western slope of the Sierra Nevada, The Needles are the most prized treasure in the garden.” -E.C. Joe & Richard Leversee.

Kristian Solem and Mike Flood on Ankles Away, Needles, CA; Photo: Kevin Powell

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Kristian Solem; Photo: Kevin Daniels



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"What an odd sport we inhabit, where bits of obscure rock in remote locations are recognizeable."
— Richard Pawlowicz