Winners of #TheBestSend Competition

The judges have spoken: Here are the top five drawings and stories.

Whether you’re stuck at home or in a van, in challenging times like these, it’s good to reflect on why we love the sport. That’s why, over the month of April, we asked the climbing community to share the stories, along with drawings, of their favorite ascents. To sweeten the deal—and spark a little friendly competition—we offered a pair of Tenaya MASTIA climbing shoes to each of the top five submissions, chosen by a judge panel of professional photographers and climbers.

Over 130 climbers sent in beautiful drawings, paintings, illustrations, and even an animation overlaid on watercolors. The competition was fierce. We were blown away by the creativity and the level of effort put into these, which, in hindsight, is only fitting for such a dedicated and talented group of humans. As the submissions rolled in, we quickly learned that we’re not just a community of climbers, but of artists and story tellers, as well.

Thank you to everyone who submitted a drawing!


Ken Etzel: Ken is a photographer and an ecologist who lives in Bishop, California. His ultimate goal is to “live a long and happy life in the mountains while documenting and inspiring people to get off the couch and reach their own lofty goals.

Josune Bereziartu: The first woman to climb 9a, Josune hardly needs an introduction. Her perseverance and obsession have led her to push the limits of the sport and establish new standards for the next generations of climbers.

Josep Malo: Hailing from Sant Vicenç de Castellet near Montserrat, Spain, the cradle of Catalan climbing, Josep is an action and adventure photographer, and an avid climber. He says his work and his passion are an intrinsic whole.


ЮЛИЯ ГЕВЛИЧ – @juligevlich

Synne Amanda Salvesen – @synneas

Sophie Binder – @softhefrog

Italia Itzanami Torres – @italia_t

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In his 20’s, with little money in his pockets, knowing no English, but determined, my dad moved from Mexico City to California. After moving to the U.S., climbing became his passion. One of his proudest moments was climbing El Capitan. The allure of California's vistas and crags followed him all the way to Chicago where he lives now. … Because of him, I too began climbing, before there were any proper climbing gyms in the city. For the longest time I dreamt of scaling those granite walls, standing at the foot of the Sierra Nevada Mountains and spending nights under the stars in the Valley. … Summer of 2019 we finally had the opportunity to go. Together we climbed Grant’s Crack on Swan Slab (5.9+) and my first multi-pitch After Six/After Seven (5.7/5.8) on Manure Pile Buttress. Both routes absolutely tested every fiber of my being. Scraped knuckles, sweaty palms, and sweet success. #thebestsend and most meaningful because it was the first time in Yosemite climbing with my dad. … … …………………………………………………………………… Whether you’re stuck at home or in a van, in challenging times like these, it’s good to reflect on why we love the sport. Share the story of your own favorite send for a chance to win a pair of MASTIA climbing shoes. To enter, post a drawing of yourself on the climb (include a real photo, if you have one), and write why it was meaning ful to you. Tag @tenayaclimbing in the photo and text, with the hashtag #thebestsend, and challenge three friends to participate. We’ll pick the five best posts in early May, and will send the authors/artists new shoes! #tenaya #makeithappen #climbing

A post shared by Italia Itzanami Torres (@italia_t) on

Bea Saudade – @bea.saudade


The submissions below all received one or two votes from the judges during the initial rounds of voting, but fell shy of taking a spot in the top five. We present them here as honorable mentions, worthy of note.


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