Peter Metcalf is the CEO/President of Black Diamond Equipment, a company he co-founded in 1989 in Ventura, California. and moved to Utah in 1991. Since his founding of Black Diamond, Peter has been named Small Business Person of the Year from Utah and Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year (2002, Utah), among other awards and recognition. In addition he has authored articles for Inc Magazine and been featured in an array of local and national business, trade and environmental press. Prior to BD’s founding, Peter worked in Marketing/Sales management at the Patagonia/Lost Arrow Corporation and prior to that he was a Colorado Outward Bound Instructor, an oil-field roughneck and a climbing guide/climbing bum (with hard technical first ascents to his credit from around the world and was one of the pioneer alpinists of Alaska in the 1970s and early 80s). He lives in Park City with his wife and three children. When not working Peter enjoys climbing, mountaineering, skiing, trail running and mountain biking and trying to make a difference.
As a kid growing up just outside of New York City in the 1960s I was like many kids my age introduced to both climbing & skiing via Boy Scouts. In my first year of skiing – 1968 — I skied Mad River Glen several times and got to hike up to and ski Tuckerman’s Ravine on Mount Washington. Both inspire me to this day. My start to rock climbing was in ’69 via an Appalachian Mountain Club’s beginner weekend at the Schwangunks. I was hooked by the end of the 2nd day.
Favorite climbing/ski area and why? Eldorado Canyon, Colorado – it played a formative role in my development as a climber in the late 70s and it was where I learned what it took to be bold but controlled; combine balance with strength; and using your mind quickly to figure out the moves. It was also place of quick access but it led you into a vista that straddled the urban world of Boulder below and the high peaks of the continental divide above. It was & is where the dreams of bigger trips could easily be conjured up, so close to home because of the climbing, views, setting, and solitude of say the West Ridge. Eldorado will always hold a special place in my heart & soul and an annual trip back, if only for a weekend, is always on my yearly list of “to dos.”
What/who inspires you in your sport? My heroes and sources of inspiration have evolved with the sport and who is pushing those limits at the time. Those folks have changed significantly since I began climbing. That said, Willo Welzenbach is a timeless hero as is Walter Bonatti. Likewise, my friend Conrad Anker is an inspiration to me for his continued passion & cutting edge competency, ethics, genuine warmth, and style.
Strangest place you've ever woken up? On the aisle of a Greyhound bus (with people walking over me) that had just pulled into the Pittsburgh Greyhound station at 6 am. The journey had begun in Fort Bridger, Wyoming as I was taking a break from my job as a chain hand on a wildcat drilling rig.
What's your dream job? CEO/President/Chairman of Black Diamond Equipment.