Logo Alan Watts Interview Close Shave
Alan Watts on Close Shave
(5.12c R) on Monkey Face
in September 1985

In a lot of ways the best times for me
probably came in '83, '84, '85 -- those
years before Smith Rock became well
known and when I was really advancing
rapidly as a climber. During that time
I was going from my first 5.10 in 1978
to doing hard 5.13s seven years later.

It was an exciting time for me
personally, and the others climbing
there. And then it became obvious
-- as more and more routes started
to go up -- that we were doing some-
thing significant. Significant not just
for Smith Rock climbing, but for
climbing in this country in general.
We're talking about serious, significant
routes; I would go and do the hardest
routes in other places at the time and

find that they were no harder than what
we were doing at Smith Rock -- and
often they were easier.

It was at that point that we knew...WOW,
we have this place with all this potential,
with so much to do and so many hard
routes and NOBODY even knows about
it. And then it was even more exciting
during the time the place was discovered
-- when it went from being just a little
climbing area off a road near
Terrebonne, Oregon, to Smith Rock,
the place European climbers would plan
entire vacations around. It happened in
just a couple years. It was a very rapid transformation.

This is the end of part one of the
interview with Alan Watts. Part two
starts on Page 5.

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