Nick Wharton climbing on Gouther Crag
A Kendal based climber and guide book writer is bringing together three rock climbing legends, whose achievements span the last 70 years, for an evening of stories and insights.
Nick Wharton, whose work includes two climbing guides to the English Lake District, says Paul Ross, Pete Whillance and Dave Birkett continue to inspire rock climbers to this day. And that despite advances in climbing technology and safety some of their climbs remain unrepeated or rarely tackled.
“This is a rare opportunity to hear the three men talk about their achievements and the motivation required to operate at the cutting edge of climbing development. It is also a great opportunity for the audience to put their own questions to them” said Nick Wharton.
“Paul Ross, Pete Whillance and Dave Birkett each made rock climbing history and continue to be passionate about a popular sport that appeals to all ages.
“In the 50's and 60's Paul Ross, from Keswick, established many climbing routes around Borrowdale, Langdale, Thirlmere and Ennerdale which continue to challenge climbers today. In the 70's and 80's Pete Whillance successfully tackled free ascents of notoriously difficult routes which are still revered and considered too bold for most climbers. They include the depths of Hodge Close Quarry to the heights of Great Gable as well as other notable classics in Scotland and Wales. From the 90’s onwards Dave Birkett, born and bred in Little Langdale, pushed standards to dizzying new heights. From his first ‘E9’ on Iron Crag in Thirlmere in 1992, to the current day, he has left the trail of often unrepeated lines that most climbers struggle to contemplate. Many are on the buttresses of Scafell, England’s highest mountain, where his grandfather farmed.
“The Lake District has been at the heart of rock climbing developments since the very earliest days of the sport. Each generation has produced its own leaders who have set the standards for others to look up to and try to follow and those legends include Paul, Pete and Dave.
“The evening brings together three larger-than-life characters who will share with us their motivation, vision and drive to achieve all they did. I hope they will inspire the audience to find their own adventures” he added.
The evening is being held at Brathay Hall Clappersgate Ambleside on Friday 16 September at 7pm. Monies raised will support local charity, Brathay Trust’s work with disadvantaged and vulnerable young people. To purchase a ticket, priced £20 which includes a hot pot supper, visit Brathay’s website: