As cities keep rising to new heights, it begs one big question: why on earth would you want to climb just as high in a tree?
“I’m insane or something like that,” said tree climber Miguel Pastenes.
Pastenes makes a living climbing and trimming trees.
“That’s my passion,” he said.
Miguel’s boss, Steve Houser, encouraged him to branch out and make it his hobby through the bizarre world of competitive tree climbing.
“Every time I see a big tree I wanna go up there and climb it,” Pastenes said.
The first time Miguel competed he won the state competition. He’s won it nine times in all. Now he’s chasing the international title, knock on wood.
“It’s kinda like a game for me,” he said.
Competitive tree climbing has five dangerous events, and in all of them, climbers dangle from a rope, which dangles from the tree.
“You may only get one chance to make a mistake in our business and it may be your last,” Houser said.
Which makes anyone wonder, who thought this was a good idea?
“It all starts with a couple of guys talking, ‘I’m the best at this, I’m the best at this.’ And they said let’s go out and see,” Houser said.
Talk about going out on a limb. Egos aside, this is dangerous, and Steve strongly suggests you leave the tree climbing to professionals.
But you’re more than welcome to come out and watch. That is, if you can see the forest-er through the trees.