The first time REI member Frank Sanders saw Devils Tower was in the sudden brilliance of a lightning strike. It sent a wave of anxiety through him, but the next day he climbed The Tower. Forty-three years later, he’s repeated that act more than 2,000 times and learned a thing or two about going up and not growing old.
Just outside the town of Mouriès, France, in the small Alpilles Mountains, sits a legendary iconic route from the 1980s called, "Magie Blanche" (White Magic). This twenty-meter-high dead-vertical wall of 8b+ (5.14a) has little in common with the routes typically scaled by today's sport climbers. On October 16, the best among them took on the challenge. Here is the story of a truly unique encounter!