Cash Prizes in Climbing Competitions

Western Australia is a pretty long way from the person-choked urban centres on the East Coast, but if you’re a comp climber you just got some added incentive to fly West. On 18 August, Portside Boulders is throwing a comp with cash on the line – for Open As there’s a grand for the winners, $750 for second place and $500 to round out the podium. Not to be sneezed at. The lure of money led us here at VL to…

Climbers’ Feet: a Horror Story

The climber’s foot, in the scheme of horrors, is up there. We are not talking murdered-body-cut-into-pieces-and-stuffed-into-a-44-gallon-drum-type horror, more an everyday malformed ugliness. Why are the feet of climbers so unfortunate? The answer is common to all those with disasters for feet – ballet dancers, the wives of wealthy 17th-century Chinese dudes and climbers – tight shoes. Climbers like tight shoes. Very tight shoes. For example, my running shoes are a European 46.5, while my climbing shoes are 42 (US 9.5),…

Blog – Not Safe

One of our readers reports on a worrying trend that could have disastrous consequences ‘SAFE!’ The call rings out across the climbing gym, and the dutiful belayer responds by lowering their climber – the one who just yelled ‘safe’ – to the ground. It’s not the first time I have heard it and every time I do I roll my eyes and shake my head. Each and every person who is taught to say this in the gym is putting their…

Save Yourself

SYS (Save Yo Self) Over the weekend at least two boulderers were rescued (one by helicopter) after falling off highball boulder problems in the Grampians. These accidents, plus a few others, have inspired us to remind you dear readers of something profound: bouldering is dangerous. In fact, in many ways bouldering is more dangerous than climbing on a rope, something we are not sure that most noobs understand. When you’re bouldering you’re always falling off and (unlike roped climbing) you’re…

Motivation (or am I still a climber?)

If motivation waxes and wanes then Ollie Kerr has two moons pulling on him – riding and climbing. Forgive me Father, for I have sinned. I didn’t mean to. Or at least, not at first. I meant to stay faithful – with all my heart and soul. I’ve been told the long distance thing is hard but I didn’t realise just how hard. Until I tried. The temptation was all around me. At first, I was fine. I didn’t even…

Contributor swag – Issue 24

Once again, thanks to everyone who contributed to Issue 24 of Vertical Life, particularly our advertisers, who have all supplied some great prizes for contributors to latest issue. Our lucky contributors are: Mitch Scanlan-Bloor (who contributed a folio of Oz climbing shot) will be getting a ‘Team’ Petzl Meteor Helmet (RRP $175) in case he tries to break himself again – courtesy of Petzl and Spelean. Dan Wilde (who took a bunch of great shots of Tom Farrell) will be…

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