Ken's Open Road
Public Television: Season Three
climbing, El Capitan, happiness, living in a cave, rock climbing, start at the beginning, Yosemite
As a toddler, Ken Yager was climbing on whatever he could around the house. Ten years later, his father let him tag along on a rock climbing trip, and Ken was immediately hooked. Soon he was leading the climbs with people 3 or 4 times his age, and by age 17 he had moved to Yosemite with barely any money and one thing in mind: to climb El Capitan, the largest monolith in America. Spending his days climbing the mountains of Yosemite, he supported himself by sorting through trash and collecting cans. And though it may have been a rough life at times, he was fueled by his passion, and he describes his few years living in the cave as one of the best periods of his life. Today, Ken still lives and climbs in Yosemite, and has become quite familiar with El Capitan, which he has climbed more than 50 times. For Ken, focus and perseverance have proven to be crucial strengths in both climbing and life.