There's a cliche saying - to live each day to the fullest because you never know what tomorrow may bring, which is much easier said than done. In today's day and age very few people break out of the status quo to do so. However, in the early 1970's there was a group of Southern California teens who truly lived each day as if it was their last, living care free and doing what they loved day in and day out.
The Stone Masters as they called themselves, were a small band of young rock climbers and adventurers based in Yosemite National Park, who came together and blew open the conventions of climbing. They pioneered and popularized the sport of rock climbing, specifically free soloing - no ropes, no harnesses, no aids, no nothing, just pure skill and no fear.
The original crew, which was made up of John Long, Richard Harrison, Mike Graham, Robs Muir, Gib Lewis, Bill Antel, Jim Hoagland, Tobin Sorenson, John Bachar, and Rick Accomazzo, quickly developed a strong reputation for themselves. These self-proclaimed, long-haired hippies scavenged for leftover food scraps from tourists, slept in tents & out of cars, and fashioned their own climbing equipment. Nicknamed the "Stoned Masters," the group of climbers would get stoned, climb, and conquer new routes in Yosemite. There are even stories of one of the climbers dropping acid while hanging from the face of a cliff. They brought in the elements of sex, drugs, and rock & roll to Camp 4, the campsite the climbers called home.
From scaling some of the biggest rocks at record speeds to their bohemian personality, these adrenaline junkies were something like never before. And although some would say they were foolish for cheating death, the Stonemasters were doing what they loved everyday despite the risk and society's expectations.
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