High Wire Slacklining and a Nepalese Ascent of Troutdale Pinnacle

by Mick Ryan May/2007
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+George  Ullrich slacklining 20m up at Kendal Wall, 103 kb
High Wire Slacklining
Slacklining has really caught the imaginination of climbers these days. Often done in climbing campgrounds as a fun diversion it really comes into its own when done outdoors at height, and climbers have rigged lines all around the world: from Lost Arrow Spire in Yosemite, between Desert Towers in Utah, to Napes Needle in the English Lake District - the birthplace of British climbing. But you've got to start somewhere.

At Kendal Wall on Saturday (after hours), George Ullrich, 18, rode a high wire slackline at the top of the main wall, 20 metres off the deck. George, a six form student at Queen Katherine in Kendal, has been climbing since he was 8 and has led such routes as Right Wall (E5), Lord of the Flies (E6), Trilogy (E5) and made a recent solo of Soap On a Rope an E4 above water solo in the Llanberis slate quarries.

Dave Gill, a classmate of George's and a budding filmmaker, shot some video and for fans of slackline, Dave said he'd get it up on YouTube later this week, between studying for his A levels. In addition to the photo on the left, there's another photo of George's high wire antics here

On the same day at Kendal Wall, the British Junior Team (britishclimbingteam.com) were training hard, supervised by Tony and Debbie Powell, Ian Dunn and the dedicated parents of the team members. Shauna Coxsey (see photo) who did very well at Youth Open competition in Marseilles, was there working hard along with the rest of the team.

On Sunday, George and Dave led a team of six up a very wet Troutdale Pinnacle (Black Crag,Borrowdale), including two Nepalese mountaineers, Nare Magar (website), 29 of Dhankuta and Lhakpa Sherpa, 36, of Khiraule. You can see a photo of part of the team at a small belay stance before the crack pitch of Troutdale Superdirect here. The heavens opened as the team topped out.

In other "Youth" news Pete Whittaker, 16, made a fine ascent of Johnny Dawes classic Braille Trail E7 6c at Burbage South at the weekend, between studying for his GCSE's. You can read an account of his ascent at Planet Fear.com

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