Edelweiss Athlete: Joe Mills

Joe Mills joins the Edelweiss USA Team.

Joe Mills grew up in Dallas, Texas when rock climbing wasn’t even a part of his vocabulary. However, after moving to Colorado during his last year in high school he received an offer from a friend to learn the ropes of climbing. He took to it quickly with a new psych that made him excel quickly. Now Joe is flying up some of the hardest trad routes in Colorado and Utah.

One year after learning to climb, Joe had the experience of topping out on El Cap. He climbed the Nose 100% on aid, not a single free move on the entire route. Joe says, “That was my first ascent ever of that style and will probably be the last…for good reason.”

Joe works with the U.S. Geologic Survey and is head deep in his PhD research at U of CO. He also likes to spend his free-time brewing his own ale with his girlfriend.

  • Received honorable mention from Climbing Magazine during the 2012 Golden Piton Awards for his second free ascent of Hallucinogen Wall, 5.13+ R (16 pitches) in the Black Canyon of Gunnison, CO
  • Made the first ascent of Black Mama, 5.13 (3 pitches) near Gateway, CO
  • Made the 2nd all-gear ascent of China Doll, 5.14- R in Dream Canyon, CO

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