Blog – Stupidest Ever Question

Simon Madden finds out that just when you hubristically think you’ve heard all the stupid questions a message out of the blue can trump them all ‘How do you get the rope up there?’ ‘Why don’t you just walk around the back?’ ‘What are you carrying those mattresses for?’ ‘Do you wear gloves with hooks on them?’ I never tire of the stupid questions that non-climbers ask you when they find out you are a climber. They are also almost shockingly…

Running & Climbing

Ross Taylor on why running and climbing are a match made in heaven. When I run I often think about climbing. When I am climbing I never think about running. There is something about this dichotomy that makes running and climbing perfectly complementary – the yin and yang of exercise. When I run my mind is like the washing machine that noisily bangs away in the laundry, constantly rotating with the dirty smalls of my day, thoughts roiling around in…

Climbing and talking politics with Conrad Anker

Simon Madden shoots and shoots-the-breeze with Conrad Anker The Seymour Centre crowd stood as one, thunderous applause rung out, Conrad Anker dropped to his knees after wowing the throng for a few hours with a ranging Q&A. He did talk about climbing mountains, about the lust for and fear of the edge and about high adventure in wild places but the big finale was a piece about politics and an impersonation of Donald Trump that had them roaring. Politics. Another world away, an overly-large group…

Vision – Townsville town cragging

Simon Madden finds an absolute ball-tearer of an urban rock route in an unlikely location, way up in FARKNQ, in Townsville The curtain of pink granite glows weakly under the floodlights that shine up from the dirt slope below so that the big face can be seen by the city’s inhabitants even in the dark of night. Right in front of me, the weak glow is burnt by my headtorch, which focuses a searing cone of light. The rock’s surface looks incredibly…

Contributor Swag – Vertical Life no 25

Every issue of VL we give away a bunch of great gear from our advertisers to people who contribute to the magazine. This issue the lucky winners are: Simon ‘Shim Sham’ Bischoff (who wrote a wonderful piece about climbing on Flinders Island) wins a pair of Butora Comet shoes (RRP $129.95) courtesy of Climbing Anchors. Madoc Sheehan (who contributed to our article on the best highballs from around Oz) wins a year’s supply of Black Diamond chalk courtesy of Black…

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…

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