Informant Info
Mallory Bird, 18, grew up and lives in Durango, CO with a family of climbers. She is now a freshman undergraduate at Dartmouth College. She’s been climbing with her family for as long as she can remember. She loves the puzzle-aspect of the sport and simply finds it enjoyable, while her biggest climbing fear is being high during windy conditions. Mallory first learned of the tradition during her freshman fall when she first became strongly involved in the DMC.

Type: Material, Customary

Language: English

Country of Origin: US

Date Collected: May 12, 2016

Location Collected: Jonathan Belden Daniels Climbing Gym, Dartmouth College, Hanover, NH

Social Context: Talus is a book consisting of Dartmouth Mountaineering Club folklore. The book is well-known by DMC members and is given as a parting gift to seniors.

Associated File:


A copy of the book is placed on top of the locker of each graduating senior during the end of Spring term. Over a few weeks, anyone can write and sign the book, much like a yearbook.

Informant Comments
Mallory hasn’t personally read the book but knows of many stories within it which have been retold by friends. She really likes this tradition since it reflects the tight-knit community that is the Dartmouth Mountaineering Club.

Collector’s Comments
Signing Talus at the end of the year is a custom that gives DMC members a way to remember the club, its members, and its defining stories for years to come. It’s one of many parting rituals that seniors participate in.

Tags/Keywords: book, climbing, Customary, material, Ritual, seniors, talus

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