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One of the best things about Withernot over the past 3 years has been the connections it's presented.  It really is amazing how something like rugby shirts can connect people across the country and sometimes even beyond.
If you've been following us for a while, you've probably seen the picture above we've used of a young rock climber with a torn rugby shirt.  It was one of the first images pinned to our original moodboard as we were developing the brand.

Courtesy of Jimmie Dunn

A couple months ago, I received an email from a man named Bob (hey Bob!), who saw that we used this image and gave us a tip of how to connect with the man in the picture - none other than Jimmie Dunn of rock climbing fame.

Soon thereafter, Jimmie and I talked on the phone for over an hour where he told me all about his life, his adventures, and notably, about the rugby shirt in the photo.  He told me he was surprised but honored that we used his photo - I guess as a self proclaimed "dirtbag" rock climber, he didn't anticipate turning into a fashion inspiration.

Turns out, we had a lot of common interests and even some shared experience in Chapel Hill, NC!

He told me that Yvon Chouinard gave him the rugby shirt to wear after they had met in Yosemite back in the day (How cool is that??) He wore it to death on his rock climbing escapades because of its durability against scuffs while climbing.  Little did he know, his rock climbing style would have the longevity it has.  Now about 45 years later, we're bringing it back.

Of course, I had to send him our Ulysses rugby shirt to see how it compared.   He sent the photo up top as a comparison - seems like he likes it just as much as or more than the original!

Jimmie, now in his 70s, is still rock climbing with no signs of slowing down.  He told me he plans to climb this spire, Venus Needle in Arizona, sometime soon.  Stay tuned as he plans to send some photos of this ascent.