The Cleanest Line
Sonnie Trotter

Sonnie Trotter

Sonnie Trotter was 18 when he first traveled to Rifle, Colorado. That trip opened his eyes and he immediately dedicated himself to climbing. His lists of accomplishments encompass all styles of climbing, from deep water soloing to big walls. Highlights include a free ascent of The Prophet on El Capitan and first ascents of Cobra Crack in Squamish and The Shining on Mount Louis.


Sonnie and his family in Yosemite, one of countless stops they’ll make over the course of their year on the road. Photo: Sonnie Trotter

The Only Constant Is Change

Jul 12, 2018 July 12, 2018

I’m sitting on a sunny bench in some random park in central Oregon holding my eight-month-old daughter in my arms and watching my four-year-old son launch himself down a slide. We’ve been on the road as a family for nearly a month now, and the daily hunt for a decent… Read More

Photo: Ken Etzel

It’ll Go

Apr 21, 2017 April 21, 2017

“It can’t be a route if there aren’t any holds, Sonnie,” Alex called from the ground. I could see him down there, sitting back in his harness comfortably, looking up at me, grinning. I was roughly 60 feet in the air, on the opposite end of the 9mm rope he… Read More

Photo: Cameron Maier

Tasmania: The Totem Pole

Jun 16, 2016 June 16, 2016

“Great climb, eh?” said a voice from up and over my right shoulder. “Yeah,” I replied, while clipping the anchor on After Midnight one of Mount Wellington’s most prized pitches and no giveaway at 24 (or 5.11d in Yosemite terms), “incredible, actually.” “Where you from?” the voice asked. “Canada!” I… Read More

Van Life – Lessons From the Road

Van Life – Lessons From the Road

Jan 10, 2013 January 10, 2013

“Don’t throw that away” she said, “we can reuse it”. A small pot of dish water was clutched in my hand, as murky as the amazon, “Put it in here instead, we don’t have much left.” She was right, we didn’t. It was cold outside,… Read More

Will Stanhope climbing The Prophet, El Capitan. Photo: Sonnie Trotter

The Prophet

Dec 16, 2011 December 16, 2011

On El Capitan in 2010, British rock climbers Leo Houlding and Jason Pickles completed their nine-year project, The Prophet (600m, E9 7a, 5.13d R). The difficult and dangerous new route climbs the far right side of El Cap, and Houlding, renowned worldwide for his boldness and… Read More

Down and Dirty with Sonnie Trotter

Down and Dirty with Sonnie Trotter

Nov 2, 2010 November 2, 2010

One of the coolest things about climbing is how everyone can get their fix – whether you climb 5.5 or 5.14, we can all find that same feeling, that same immersion, focus and engagement at our own levels. This summer, Patagonia rock climbing ambassador Sonnie Trotter devoted… Read More

It’s the Freakin’ Weekend

It’s the Freakin’ Weekend

Nov 20, 2009 November 20, 2009

The rain has come back today, this time it looks as though it might never leave. Dark and dreary. We did however have a relatively nice week in general. Climbing was good all day yesterday, and we had a couple of beauties two days before that. [Editor's note: Today's… Read More

Simple Pleasures at Good Times Farm

Simple Pleasures at Good Times Farm

Oct 9, 2009 October 9, 2009

  A blister formed on the palm of my hand, between my forefinger and my thumb. I always thought I had tough hands. I mean, I’m supposed to be a professional rock climber and my hands are supposed to be like leather right? But not this part, not at all. Read More

Photo: Jonathan Thesenga / Sonnie Trotter

24 Hours of Horseshoe Hell

Oct 7, 2008 October 7, 2008

“24 hours of what?” I cried into my cell phone. “24 hours of HELL,” Kristo repeated. “Well, okay then, sign me up.” He had answered my question and we left it at that. Two months later, I still didn’t fully comprehend the meaning or significance of the event’s name. I… Read More

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