Summer

Australian Editor’s note to issue eleven of Vertical Life. Download the Vertical Life App from iTunes or the Kindle Fire App Store here. Of all the seasons I find Summer the most evocative. Perhaps it’s because it is the smelliest. Summer is all about the olfactory senses; the thick fug of sweat, sunscreen and musty camping gear on the drive home from the crag; the sweet, ephemeral scent after rain has swept over the dry Wimmera plain (it’s called petrichor, I think); the low-level chemical tang of chlorine overlaid by…

Protein, Power & Pulling

The world of nutrition advice is filled with many old wives’ tales, while social media allows anyone with an opinion to provide inaccurate information. In the first of a new series of articles for VL, Amanda Cossey dispels some commonly accepted food myths Myth One: The more protein I eat the quicker I will recover and the stronger my muscles will be! Myth Two: The harder I climb the more I need a protein supplements. For many climbers and sportspeople…

Australian Climbing Festival

Australian Editor’s note to issue ten of Vertical Life. Download the Vertical Life App from iTunes or the Kindle Fire App Store here. IMAGE: Neil Monteith In 1997 I went to the third Australian climbing festival. Back then it was loftily called Escalade and organised by the irrepressible Lucas Trihey. I don’t really remember who I saw speak – I was pretty broke at the time, so I couldn’t afford to see many shows – but I do recall a few random fragments from 17 years past: a Simon…

An Antidote to Modernity

Tom Hoyle looks to an Algerian and the ancients to find the will to throw himself at the rock once more WORDS & IMAGES: Tom Hoyle Climbing in undeniably attractive; it is daring, it is challenging, it is vigorously gymnastic, it has a tactile aesthetic, it offers vistas and camaraderie. But you know this already, that’s why you’re here. So this won’t be one of those ‘why do I do it?’ pieces about climbing. If you are reading this, then…

On Death

Australian Editor’s note to issue nine of Vertical Life. Download the Vertical Life App from iTunes or the Kindle Fire App Store here. It is trite to say death is the spectre that haunts us all and yet it is true, even though we have a bastard, manic relationship with it. A failed relationship. Most of the time our eyes are closed to death and it is nothing but a foreboding echo out of the waiting future. But that is not always the case and during those times when…

Elphinstone: the Bluey’s new hotspot of hard

The Lords of Elphinstone are here to tell you if you want hard in the Mountains then the crimps of Diamond Falls are dead, Elphinstone is where the cool kids are at. VL speaks to some of the key developers of the new home of hard. WORDS: As credited IMAGES: Nick Fletcher and as credited Rowan Druce: Discoverer and Developer What secret wonders the Blue Mountains hold. Hanging gardens of rich soil and wild flowers. Secret gardens guarded by staunch bush…

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