With Christmas fast approaching, many of us are now being asked what we want and wracking our brains to try and think of a good present for our loved ones. For many non-climbers, knowing what to buy the climbers in their lives is a tricky question, especially for those on a tight budget. But what better than a DVD? They don't cost much and can provide much-needed inspiration during the cold and dreary winter months. UKC looked at some of the big hitters that you could still get hold of in time for Christmas.
Another high quality, multi award winning film from Alastair Lee and Posing Productions. This time, the team consisting of Leo Houlding, Sean 'Stan' Leary, Jason Pickles and Chris Rabone tackle their latest and potentially most daunting challenge yet. To climb the North-East Ridge of Ulvetanna in Queen Maud Land, Antarctica. This film is the next progression for Leo and his team after previous expeditions to Mt Asgard and Autana and follows them as they battle Antarctic cold and fearsome winds as they try and climb one of the last great unclimbed lines left on the planet. The scenery is breath-taking and typically well filmed with plenty of moments where you are left wondering how the final shot was acheived. This is a great DVD that isn't just focussed on the rock climbing, or grades, but is more about and adventure and will appeal to all climbers from focussed rock climbers to mountaineers.
Download or Buy the DVD HERE
This is the eighth installment of Big Up's collection of films showcasing the best climbers and some of the year's most amazing ascents. The Reel Rock films always deliver a highly polished, palm-sweating hour and a half of climbing footage. This year is no different and in Reel Rock 8, Josh Lowell and co. present a great set of films. 'The Sensei' is a film following Yuji Hirayama and Daniel Woods as they go from meeting for the first time, to heading to Mt Kinabalu in Borneo to try and climb some of the hardest routes of their careers to date. Next up is 'Spice Girl' which shows top female trad climber, Hazel Findlay, as she climbs Once Upon A Time In The Southwest, in Devon and Chicama in North Wales, both E9. It then shows Hazel and American Emily Harrington as they try and climb Babel, 5.13 - a massive run-out sport route in Taghia Gorge, Morroco. In the third film, Big Up take a look at the recent friction between Western climbers Ueli Steck, Simone Moro, and Jon Griffiths and Nepalese Sherpas. A fascinating insight into this major event that hit most of the world's media in May. Finally, the Reel Rock heads to Yosemite to look at the 'Stone Masters' - a group of climbers who pushed the boundaries in Yosemite in the Seventies. Extras found in the DVD include; La Dura Dura - an excellent full film showing the close co-operation between Adam Ondra and Chris Sharma as they attempt this desperate 9b+ sport route, 'The Swiss Machine' featuring Ueli Steck, and Ondra climbing two V16s.
Download or buy the DVD HERE
Distilled is a high-quality, award winning film from Paul Diffley of Hot Aches, which follows top alpinist, guide and rock climber, Andy Cave during two week-long trips to Scotland. It is a celebration of Scottish Winter climbing, which attracts climbers from all over the world to test themselves against the savage weather conditions found in Scotland, which are well shown during the film. The full-gamut of Scottish winter routes are shown here, from long, elegant ridges, through bold ice climbs to the technical and strenuous mixed routes. It is not just about the climbing though, it is also about the climber, in this case Andy Cave. The film contains interviews with Andy who eloquently talks about his beginnings in climbing through the loss of some of his climbing friends including his partner on Changabang in 1997, to what climbing means to him. All in all, a beautifully shot film that is woven around the concept of a Scottish whisky distillery. Not a DVD that will excite most pure rock climbers, with only one short rock climbing scene, but definitely one for winter climbers and mountaineers.
Download or buy the DVD HERE
Jungle Jam is another production from a team with a good track record for producing a good film. This is probably the lowest budget of the lot, yet it is still a multi-award winning film. The film documents the next expedition for Nico Favresse, Sean Villanueva and co. after the success of their previous expedition films, Asgard Jamming and Vertical Sailing. It follows the same structure also; a strong, psyched team of crazy Belgians head out to one big, steep and remote wall and proceed to free it in very good style, having a lot of fun along the way. This film is definately be a match for any of the higher budget films on offer this Christmas. One for all rock climbers as the Belgian's psyche is infectious, with the big wall element also making it of interest to those looking for something more adventurous as well .
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