The AAC’s Guidebook to Membership is all about celebrating you—the members that make the Club great. This year, we want to hear your stories. How have you made a difference in your local climbing community? Did you finally send that long term project that previously scared the crap out of you? Have you connected with a new climbing partner through your involvement with the Club? Did you have a great experience at your Craggin’ Classic? We want to hear it all!

Submission Guidelines

This year's Guidebook theme is "the Changing Faces of the AAC", so we're especially interested in stories that reflect who we've become as a climbing community. However, if you have a rad story that falls outside of these theme, we’d still love to hear it. The best stories tell of a writer’s experience that has somehow been enriched by being part of the AAC. They are inspirational, experience-driven pieces that go beyond trip report territory and focus on personal growth that is connected (either directly or indirectly) to the benefits of being an AAC member.

If your story is our favorite, we’ll include it in the Guidebook to Membership and you’ll win a $100 Patagonia gift card along with some AAC goodies. Submissions are due by February 25th. Please email stories in Word format (and any related questions) to [email protected]

When submitting a story, please include:

  • 400-800 words
  • Your name as you’d like it printed if we accept your submission
  • Any high resolution images (at least 300 dpi at print size) you have relating to your story (most cell phone shots are not large enough)


 2016 story contest winner, Drew Brodhead, wrote about rockfall on Half Dome.

2016 story contest winner, Drew Brodhead, wrote about rockfall on Half Dome.


For some creative inspiration, take a look at the stories we've published. Some of our favorite stories have included:

  • A member’s experience going with the flow when the 2013 International Climbers’ Meet unexpectedly changed location from Yosemite to Bishop

  • The story of a rescue during the first ascent of Saser Kangri II

  • How one member turned a tragedy into an opportunity to spread the word on rappelling best practices

  • Why the AAC library is what dreams are made of


While you’re writing, here are a few questions and tips to keep in mind:

  • What is the central aspect/point/view of the story? What would you like readers to take away from this story?

  • How does this story relate to the AAC? Is it about inclusivity, recognizing change and welcoming new communities into the industry?

  • Does this story have a clear structure?

  • We love to see clear and vivid details (it’s clichéd, but “show don’t tell”), varied sentence structure, and good storytelling.

 So start thinking about your year—your sends, your flails, your campfires, your bivvies—and get writing!

Again, Submissions are due by February 25. Please email stories in Word format (and any related questions) to [email protected]