|Ryans Wall Established at Newhalem, WA|
By Access Fund WA Regional Coordinator Jonah Harrison
Ryan Alan Murray Triplett passed away on September 7, 2008, while soloing a multi-pitch climb near Mazama, Washington. Ryan left as his legacy his loving wife Jen, wonder dog Makiah, his family, and friends too numerous too mention. He was an avid and talented biker and skier, but his true passion was rock climbing.
Ryan was as skilled a traditional climber as he was a sport climber. In recent years, he developed a slew of hard sport lines throughout Washington. His main focus was Newhalem, Washington on the west slope of the North Cascades. Ryan worked with the Access Fund in their efforts to reopen the crag, which is part of a long gorge (the Skagit River Gorge) filled with incredible new route potential on steep, featured gneiss with road-side access. The minute the Access Fund and the National Park Service entered an agreement reopening parts of the gorge, Ryan headed up from his home in Seattle and began establishing new lines. Ryan was amazingly motivated and quickly established modern classics as well as heady test pieces on the main wall closest to town.
Though climbers have been climbing at that wall since 2000, all new routes stopped in 2003 with the imposition of a voluntary moratorium on new route development. The wall had remained an unnamed work in progress. Since his untimely passing, Ryan's friends and the climbing community have discussed different ways to honor his memory. They decided that naming the wall Ryan's Wall would be appropriate and will use that name in the area guidebook Ryan had begun drafting. Ryan loved the area and his spirit lives on in the lines he established that will be enjoyed for generations to come.