Interview – Lee Cujes & the La Sportiva Easter Tick Contest

The Australian born and bred climbing database,, has launched an Australia-wide climbing competition sponsored by La Sportiva. Kicking off on 16 March and running for a month until 16 April, the competition is based on climbing the most number of (unique) pitches/boulders, with the top three winners in the two categories of bouldering and sport & trad climbing receiving a pair of La Sportiva Traverse X shoes. There is also a bonus pair of La Sportivas to be won…

Interview – Roots, Rocks, Arapiles

Documentary filmmakers, Kelsey McGowan and Christian Lavery, have produced a film about the roots of climbing at Mt Arapiles. In what is a bit of a coup, the short is going to be premiered on a big screen. Roots, Rock, Arapiles will be played before the Melbourne screening of Reel Rock at the Astor Theatre on Tuesday 21 November. Whilst undoubtedly Reel Rock and other travelling film festivals showcase brilliant films of wild adventure, It can feel as if we are watching other histories. Mostly…

Tom Oh & The Wheel

Tom O’Halloran is currently in the Grampians after coming down for the Grampians Bouldering Festival last week with his partner Amanda Watts and daughter Audrey. To get the festival off to a roaring start, he sent the Wheel of Life (V14/15) on the Friday before the festival. We’ve finally caught up with him to ask him some hard-hitting questions about his ascent. We know your daughter Audrey regularly advises you to ‘be like water’, with that in mind how did…

Interview – Amy Fenton

Amy Fenton is one of the strongest boulderers floating around at present. We were in the middle of interviewing her about a couple of her recent hardest ticks – a brace of V10s – when she upped the ante by climbing at least two grades harder, sending Deep Blue Sea (V12/13) at the Black Cave on Sydney’s Northern Beaches. We speak to her about the Fenton Formula and Fenton Dreams. Can you give us the Amy Fenton 101? Twenty one, based…

Interview – Leah Dempsey

Vertical Life speaks to Blueys climber, Leah Dempsey, possibly the smoothest, most stylish climber since Patrick Edlinger glided over the rocks like a cheese-eating French serpent. Can you give us a brief bio? I’m 27 years old and I’m Brisbane born and bred. After having quit my psychology degree and discovering my love for climbing, I decided to move to the Blue Mountains and I’ve been living here for the past three years. Aside from climbing, I’m a clichéd lover…

Climb Design – An interview with Tim Preston

As part of our series of interviews with Australian producers of gear for climbers, we speak to Tim Preston, owner of the Castlemaine-based Climb Design. Can you tell us a little about yourself? I like to make stuff. This has lead me from tinkering in the shed as a kid to shipbuilding (historical replicas), a degree in Industrial Design, and setting up a small furniture company usethings with my partner. We live in Central Victoria with two kids and a dog. How did…

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