Jason Kehl has been climbing for over 13 years and an artist for just as long. Climbing has always been a good creative outlet and his vagabond lifestyle and penchant for danger have fueled his adventures over the years. Jason's evolvement in the climbing world reflects theses ideas and he is willing to share them with whoever is willing to listen.
A pro climber that has been living on the road for the past 10 years, Jason always seems to find adventure. His highballing escapades have been well documented, including some amazing first ascents like- Evilution in Bishop, Ca and becoming the first person to solo 5.14d with his boulder ascent of The Fly in Rumney New Hampshire. You can also see what he is up to via his website www.cryptochild.com.
Life sure is crazy! One moment you can be frolicking through the fields, smelling the flowers and the next moment lying on the ground in a pool of your own blood, wondering if you'll ever walk again. This may seem like a drastic change, but it all can happen in an instant.
So I'm sure you're all wondering "Hey, where are all the climbing pics?" Well, this is climbing. This is what climbing did to me and now we're all just going to have to sit here and deal with it. I guess I should start with my recent injury, which ultimately made the decision for me that Yes, I am getting ACL replacement surgery. Picture this, January 10th one of the nicest days in Hueco Tanks all season. I gathered an eager crew and headed out to the super secret, super mega project on South Mountain. We fought valiantly all day ripping at the rock, mashing our teeth and even foaming a little at the mouth. The breakthrough came after swimming through a rough sea of slopers when all of the sudden I found myself sticking the crux with a roar. It was basically over except for the very last move to the summit grip (which is just as hard as the hardest move on Everest, mind you) so I reached out stretching my finger to clutch the tight little undercling mono and then it happened.
I woke up and I had my finger up my ass. All joking aside, I had the surgery on Febuary 5th, which was pretty exciting in itself, but this is my second surgery. So first they had to chip away at the bone that had grown over the old one-inch long screws, remove the screws, patch up the holes with some bone putty and then perform the ACL surgery. The ACL or the anterior cruciate ligament is inside the knee and keeps it from bending the wrong way outwards. I haven't had one since 2003. I had it fixed in 2005 and that only lasted for two years, but it was totally workable, in fact I bouldered The Fly in Rumney, NH without it. This time though I tore some of the meniscus and a flap of it was enabling me to straighten my leg. They took care of that too and even put it in a little plastic baggie to go. It's all for the better though, a strong leg is always better than a leg that's hanging by a string.
It's all uphill from here though. I've gotten over my biggest fear (not waking up after surgery) and now I have seen the light! The road ahead is a long one but still exciting because I chose it. It's also my choice to get better and to come back stronger and not sit here in bed rotting away with a bed sore that you can stick a fist in. No, that's not my style. I'm psyched to shape holds for my company CryptoChild, learn to play the cello, organize my life and finger train the hell out of these little fingers. Sounds like a good time, I will keep you posted.