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/ FRI NIGHT VID: Alex Honnold Soloing El Cap in 360

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UKC News - on 05 Oct 2018
On 3rd June 2017, Alex Honnold stunned the climbing and non-climbing world alike into awed silence with his free-solo ascent of Freerider 5.12d on El Capitan, Yosemite. Equipped only with shoes and a chalkbag, he calmly ascended the 3,000ft granite monolith in just 3 hours and 56 minutes.

A feature film Free Solo by acclaimed adventure filmmakers Jimmy Chin and E. Chai Vasarhelyi is currently doing the rounds at festivals and special screenings. In this 360 virtual reality video by the Free Solo team and National Geographic, you too can get a sense of what it might be like to climb without a rope 3,000ft (or indeed much lower...) above Yosemite Valley.



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Ben_Climber - on 05 Oct 2018
In reply to UKC News:

Anyone else find that rather annoying? Scrolling around the screen trying to find Alex in each frame and just ended up clicking a pausing the video constantly.

Liked the 360 idea for all of about 30 seconds.

Really looking forward to seeing the Free Solo though!

Post edited at 17:51
beardy mike - on 05 Oct 2018
In reply to Ben_Climber:

Nope. Still loving it.

George Frisby - on 05 Oct 2018
In reply to Ben_Climber:

You need to watch it on a mobile phone or tablet, then as you move the device around the view point moves with it, so it is like looking around in real life.

Just doesn't really work on a PC.

Post edited at 18:53
Si dH - on 05 Oct 2018
In reply to George Frisby:

> You need to watch it on a mobile phone or tablet, then as you move the device around the view point moves with it, so it is like looking around in real life.

> Just doesn't really work on a PC.

It doesn't work like that on my Hudl2 - I have to scroll with my finger. It also stutters a lot. I gave up after about a minute. Guess I need a more powerful tablet

eroica64 - on 05 Oct 2018
In reply to Ben_Climber:

Me +1

purplemonkeyelephant - on 05 Oct 2018
In reply to UKC News:

VR headset + YouTube = win

SenzuBean - on 05 Oct 2018
In reply to UKC News:

Back to the story... Can’t wait to see this, although if it’s anything like pitch 15, I’ll want to see it over and over.

Martin McKenna - UKC - on 05 Oct 2018
In reply to UKC News:

Usually I hate these 360 things, but on this I actually enjoyed it. I guess a VR headset is really just another level though.

Wiley Coyote2 - on 05 Oct 2018
In reply to UKC News:

Just infuriating. I'll wait for the dvd, which looks like it will be brilliant. Igave this up as a bad job after 3 mins

 

Tom Last - on 05 Oct 2018
In reply to UKC News:

Not working at all on my iPhone. 

 

Just all all crammed into a non-scrollable screen at a very weird aspect ratio. 

Post edited at 22:06
Robert Durran - on 05 Oct 2018
In reply to UKC News:

What an extraordinarily irritating format.

Shani - on 06 Oct 2018
john arran - on 06 Oct 2018
In reply to George Frisby:

Worked great on android Youtube (oneplus 3). Turning me and the phone together to scroll really gave a far more immersive experience than ordinary scrolling, to the point where I'd suggest watching it while sat on a rotating office chair! Very cool just to be able to 'look' up or down at any time too.

AlanLittle - on 06 Oct 2018
In reply to UKC News:

Ok, puzzled. I'm aware that (some/many) Americans are only dimly aware that the rest of the world exists, but why does the rest of the climbing world regard this as any more impressive than Hans-Jörg Auer soloing The Fish? 

Similar scale, similar difficulty, *much* less prior rehearsal.

And ... roll the dislikes.

stp - on 06 Oct 2018
In reply to Ben_Climber:

> Anyone else find that rather annoying? Scrolling around the screen trying to find Alex in each frame and just ended up clicking a pausing the video constantly.

I found it much easier and quicker using the keyboard arrow keys to scroll. The ease of use might also depend on one's PC setup, screen size, graphics card etc..

I thought the rather OTT music was more annoying, but still only mildy so.

In the States it sounds like the full film will be on at the cinemas. Hope it'll be released here too. It would be great to see a film like this in IMAX 3D to really get a sense of the exposure. Maybe one day someone will make one though I'm guessing that solos of El Cap aren't gonna be happening on a regular basis.

 

stp - on 06 Oct 2018
In reply to AlanLittle:

It's a good question. Firstly perhaps because this is two grades harder: 7c+ vs 7b+, and quite a thin and sketchy one I believe. Also El Cap is such a well known iconic bit of rock with such a long and famous history. So this ascent is a culmination of that history. It's also been in the news quite a bit recently with the Dawn Wall.

By comparison I'd guess few climbers even know about The Fish or for that matter Hans-Jörg Auer. Climbing media, and other media too, tends to gravitate towards the known. We all know Alex Honnold. He's soloed something hard at a famous crag so it must be genuinely newsworthy. We don't know The Fish or Auer so therefore that ascent was downplayed by the media and it's impressiveness is that much harder to gauge.

AlanLittle - on 06 Oct 2018
In reply to stp:

In fairness to Americans, Chris Kalous did interview H-J on the Enormocast, after Alex soloed Freerider, and did clearly point out just what a stunning achievement The Fish solo was.

Rad - on 07 Oct 2018
In reply to AlanLittle:

As an American you seem intent on bashing, I'll admit to not being aware of Auer's impressive solo. Mea culpa. The Alpinist description mentioned that he did not seek any media or coverage of his climb, and there is only one lousy pic taken by climbers who were quite a distance away from him. Contrast that with the professional filming of Honnold's solo done by Nat Geo. Add to this disparity the mainstream popularity of Honnold and El Cap and you have a clear indication of why one got so much more media attention than another. That doesn't mean Auer's ascent wasn't impressive. It was, as are many other free solos not covered in the media. Auer seems fine with it, and you should be too. Or maybe you're still miffed that Honnold visited the UK and hiked a bunch of your "hard" grit lines. ;)

Shani - on 07 Oct 2018
In reply to Rad:

Honnold's solo of London Wall impressed me - it is so accessible, so well known, and 'only' E5, you wonder why it had not been onsight soloed before. Clearly there's a lot to it as a route - something beyond just the grade; well played Honnold for that tick.

But the only guy to have 'hiked' lots of hard grit is Toru.

Robert Durran - on 07 Oct 2018
In reply to Rad:

> Or maybe you're still miffed that Honnold visited the UK and hiked a bunch of your "hard" grit lines. ;)

Nobody "hikes" up routes in this country; we "walk" up them or "path" them.

 

Rob Parsons on 07 Oct 2018
In reply to AlanLittle:

> Ok, puzzled. I'm aware that (some/many) Americans are only dimly aware that the rest of the world exists ...

This is a stupid and ignorant comment.

You need to get out a little more.

 

 

olddirtydoggy - on 07 Oct 2018
In reply to UKC News:

Just watched the latest vid from Dave Macleod about fear and climbing and it seems to be a different view from Honnold. I wonder if the head science is the same for everybody when looking to progress, this suggests not. Amazing vid, can't wait to see the whole film.

stp - on 07 Oct 2018
In reply to Rad:

> It was, as are many other free solos not covered in the media. Auer seems fine with it, and you should be too.

Well if you only see the media as a form of gratification for climbers that might make some sense. Personally I think climbing news should be an accurate portrayal of outstanding climbing achievements, regardless of the wishes of the climbers involved.

john arran - on 07 Oct 2018
In reply to olddirtydoggy:

The head game is very different for different people. For some it's a natural expression of their intrinsic enjoyment of climbing, for others certainly not - but that's not to say they can't learn to perform well at head games, given sufficient desire to do so and willingness to improve in that aspect of performance.

It no doubt works the other way too: some climbers embrace physical training like it's fun, whereas others need to apply themselves with far more determination to achieve the same goals.

It's good that not all climbers are similarly inspired, similarly talented, or similarly driven. It's also good that climbing is broad enough to allow people with all sorts of different physical and mental aptitudes to find their own niche to enjoy and in which to excel.

Wee Davie - on 08 Oct 2018
In reply to olddirtydoggy:

I've seen a video where psychologists tested Honnold on his levels of stress arousal using brain scanning and getting him to view horrific images that would turn most people's stomachs. It seems his brain is genuinely wired differently to yer average Joe Bloggs. During the testing his brain doesn't even flicker when the average persons would show signs of distress. 

 

 

 

 

robate - on 08 Oct 2018
In reply to Shani:

Several people thought about soloing it as far back as the early 80s and I was told that it had been soloed in '84, by someone who certainly had the ability, and I trust what I was told. It did not seem out of the question at the time, whereas the thought of Menopause gave me kittens, and I lead both at about the same time. There have been quite a lot of hard solos done which never made the media, a couple of which I witnessed.

BrendanO - on 09 Oct 2018
In reply to Robert Durran:

Well, it all looked very odd on Safari on my old iPad. Off work ill, so I downloaded YouTube app...bloody ell, the 360 effect is surprisingly brilliant for this video! A perfect fit for the technology, very impressive indeed. Worth the effort.

Well-done to all who made it possible. Not sure I will sleep well tonight tho,  he's a bit scary!

Irk the Purist - on 09 Oct 2018
In reply to UKC News:

Is a 3000ft solo more impressive than a 1000ft solo? It's just different shades of death if it goes wrong.

I liked the 360 filming, first time I've seen it work well.

Hardonicus - on 09 Oct 2018
In reply to Irk the Purist:

From 3000ft you probably have a bit more than twice as long to reflect on your plans for the future...

TheGeneralist - on 09 Oct 2018
In reply to OP

 

> What an extraordinarily irritating format

 

Yep. I know. Howzabout the cameraman who's actually there points the camera in the most interesting and engaging direction and films it. We'll sit here and watch it.

Rather than pissing about waving our devices in the air trying to work out which direction to look.

Great amazing technology, but highly irritating after about two minutes.

 


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