18-year-old John Lang was born and raised in Rapid City, South Dakota.  Just 15 minutes from the renowned Mount Rushmore and an endless sea of granite behind, he grew up always surrounded by the outdoors.  John first put rock shoes on at the age of 12 on a Boy Scout outing. 

He just recently hit the 5.12 grade with his personal best being Lonesome Cowboy (5.12+), and his goal is to send a 5.13 by the end of the summer.

It’s not all about ratings for John though; it’s more about the adventure he has on the way – he is putting up some first ascents with fellow blurr ambassador Mark Rafferty.  They are currently trying to bring back the lost art of ground up bolting, the traditional way.  Their most recent project is a ground up bolted 5.10 face climb on Dire Spire (directly behind Mount Rushmore).

His favourite area is the Cathedral Spires in Custer State Park. He looks up to those who first established the area, especially Herb and Jan Conn, for encouragement and inspiration. 

This coming year, John will be travelling around North America with Mark, establishing climbs and documenting the experience that will be included in their film called Off the Ground.  

You can follow their adventures at