"Wayne Merry returned to Yosemite a decade after that first ascent and started the Yosemite Mountaineering School. Soon after the school opened, I signed up and learned how to belay and rappel, and about the play of rock climbing on the senses: the clink of the hammer on a piton, the warmth of the sunlit granite under my hand, the radiant clouds sailing overhead. I learned not to look down much. All around was the beauty of Yosemite, those waterfalls crashing down the massive walls into the wildflowers, the mists sifting through the granite spires, the river pooling up in the meadows to capture reflections of sunrise and moonlight on the soaring cliffs."
Jennie Rothenberg Gritz, an Atlantic senior editor, began her association with the magazine in 2002, shortly after graduating from the UC Berkeley Graduate School of Journalism. She joined the staff full time in January 2006. Before coming to The Atlantic, Jennie was senior editor of Moment, a national magazine founded by Elie Wiesel, where she remains a contributing editor.