People

Sherpas in Sheffield

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The next stage of my Sheffield street art life-size paste ups was completed yesterday. A set of my  Sherpa and Porter portraits from Everest Base Camp have been stuck up on the Persistence Works artists studio in Sheffield.

Bob Scarpelli

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With the guest appearance of the fearsome Bob Scarpelli in the Reel Rock 7 trailer I thought was it worth showing this Hipstamatic pic of the gnarliest of gnarly Vedauwoo off-width climbers.

Everest Base Camp Portraits

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In May I visited Everest Base Camp with a white studio back drop and took portraits of Climbers, Guides, Clients, Sherpas, Cooks and Porters. The subjects included Kenton Cool, Conrad Anker, Pemba Tenzing Sherpa, Adele Pennington and Victor Saunders.          

Wild Country Crack School

Crack maestros Tom Randall and Pete Whittaker offer excellent technical crack climbing advice in part 1 of the Wild Country Crack school.

Wild Country Century Crack Poster

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My pic of Pete Whittaker on Century Crack used on the new Wild Country poster.

Wild Country Wideboyz Video Interview

In 2011 the self styled Wideboyz Tom Randall and Pete Whittaker travelled to America to climb the world’s hardest offwidths. Touring through Wyoming and Utah their exploits culminated in the first ascent of ‘Century Crack’, the world’s hardest offwidth. Here they talk to Richie Patterson of Wild Country about their historic trip.

Johnny Dawes Autobiography

Johnny Dawes in Sheffield working on his autobiography - Copyright Alex Ekins

 Rumours concerning a Johnny Dawes autobiography have been circulating for a number of years. Johnny would be seen in cafes throughout the land scribbling in notebooks and on scraps of paper. Strange drawing and symbols might be glimpsed. Sometimes wonderful snippets and passages would be read aloud. Some said that it would never be finished and […]

Pete Whittaker on Melvyn Bragg

Off-width master Pete Whittaker

Wide Boy Pete Whittaker goes both feet first on Melvyn Bragg V8 at Ramshaw Rocks, Peak District National Park

Tom Randall at Burbage South Boulders

Tom Randall - Copyright Alex Ekins

Off-width master Tom Randall demonstrating immaculate technique on the gritstone boulders at Burbage South in the Peak District National Park

Inspiration Dedication

Pete Whittaker on the first ascent of ‘Inspiration Dedication’ E7 6c in the Burbage South quarries near Sheffield, England. The landing is appalling and there is no protection until the huge detached flake near the top.

Gobbler’s Roof – The UK’s Hardest Offwidth

Tom Randall Climbing ‘Gobbler’s Roof’ E7 6c at Harbrough Rocks. The UK’s hardest off-width. First ascent by Pete Whittaker. The grade does not truly represent the difficulty of this route. The training for this route required 100,000 sit ups, ten hours of heel/toe deadhanging and one visit to a campus board. Objectively this route is […]

Pete Whittaker and Tom Randall climb new E7 and E8

Pete Whittaker and Tom Randall are well known for their new routes, however in December 2010 they excelled themselves by finding new routes at a neglected crag. Following a tip-off from the new route master himself Gary Gibson, the young apprentices fought their way through a jungle of rhododendrons to discover Rainroach Rock and what might […]

Pete Whittaker and Tom Randall talk about soloing Ray’s Roof

As many people know, the first ascent of Ray’s Roof was done by the visiting American, Ray Jardine. A pioneer of hard, burly cracks in the USA, it was no surprise that he managed to put up a “real fighter” on God’s own rock. Much like many of his rarely repeated US offwidths, he gave […]

Tom Randall Climbs One Infinity 8b+

My cheapo cameras, Adam’s film-making genius and Tom’s outstanding climbing.

Toru Returns

The chatter and the banter have stopped abruptly and the only noise now is the sound of the sea gently washing against the rocks below. The three of us begin to watch silently. We peer through the viewfinders of our digital cameras, using them as filters against the reality that is unfolding before us. A […]

Photographing Toru Nakajima In Cornwall

In May 2010 The British Mountaineering Council broke from years of tradition and held their annual international rock-climbing meet on the granite sea-cliffs of Cornwall. I was lucky enough to be able to attend the event both as a BMC host climber and as a photographer shooting for the Japanese climbing magazine Rock and Snow and UK magazine Climber. Toru Nakajima was returning […]

Toru Nakajima Crushes The Peak

It’s raining heavily when we arrive at Black Rocks. We set up a top-rope anyway. It’s gritstone; it might dry quickly. Toru abseils and chalks the holds and then I belay him, as he try’s the moves. He’s too short to use his knee and fails on the crux as often as he succeeds. It’s […]