Patrick Edlinger


Discussion Topic

Return to Forum List
This thread has been locked
Messages 1 - 20 of total 175 in this topic << First  |  < Previous  |  Show All  |  Next >  |  Last >>

Trad climber
Kalispell, Montana
Topic Author's Original Post - Nov 15, 2012 - 02:50am PT
Has there really ever been an equal? What is the deal with this guy? I hardly ever hear about him; don't know much at all, except when he climbs it's spellbinding. I don't think I've ever seen less hesitation into such committing sequences. And those high steps.

Check out the last 10 minutes or so of this video with the free-solo segment, my favorite ropeless footage, even today. There's just something about those exposed face moves. The one he did at Verdon barefoot with the opera music was always classic as well. I remember watching a competition finals against Wolfgang Gullich, who in the end, just could not keep up with Edlinger. That's unreal.

I'm clueless. Is he still around? Climbing? Didn't see much for earlier posts.


Sport climber
Nov 15, 2012 - 03:30am PT
Once upon a time in America
Patrick Oliver

Boulder climber
Fruita, Colorado
Nov 15, 2012 - 04:04am PT
Patrick remains a good friend. He is always climbing,
well known in his own country and more visible there, of
course. Yes he is a very fine climber. Some will remember
years ago how he handily won the Snowbird competition.
He stayed at my house for a month in '86. He's a bit vain, comically so,
and would walk through the house totally naked. My normally
shy girl friend, a concert pianist, would blush and say,
with a slight crack in her trembling voice, "I ... don't mind."
On that trip to America, Edlinger brought his own photographer
and cook. As compensation (not asked for by me) for staying at my house,
they cooked dinner virtually every night, and indeed that cook
was good!! They kept rolls of film in our refrigerator.
Patrick wanted me to give him the grand tour of the Gill boulders
at Fort Collins, and I did. He was by no means the measure of
John, but he made a strong show. One day he decided to repeat
Rainbow Wall in Eldorado. It was hot and humid, and when he
returned he kept saying to me, "Sleepy sleepy." I thought he meant he
was tired or had stayed up too late. He was trying to say, "Slippery
slippery." I will never forget when I was in England in '84, I
was looking for a pair of Patrick Edlinger shoes, but no store had
them. I don't know how he got wind that I was trying to find a pair,
but at the Buxton national climbers convention, someone simply
came up to me and said, "Patrick Edlinger gives you his regards." The
person handed me a brand new pair of those shoes. Patrick had made
it happen from a different country.

Nov 15, 2012 - 04:23am PT
Very cool! I'll admit I didn't know much about him until now, but that soloing footage just blew my mind! Thanks for sharing, wow.

Ajaccio, Corsica, France
Nov 15, 2012 - 05:48am PT
Patrick Edlinger has always been my climbing hero! A very awaited biography about this outstanding rock climber will be published in May 2013.
Toker Villain

Big Wall climber
Toquerville, Utah
Nov 15, 2012 - 08:24am PT
Life By The Fingertips blew me away.

Then, sitting next to Maria Cranor at Snowbird, I watched him walk up to the wall (last competitor), and by the time he was a third of the way up everybody could see he was cruising it easier than anyone before.
When he became the only person to reach the top the place went absolutely crazy.
A better finish to the competition I simply am unable to imagine.

I met him then, mostly with his friend Maurice translating.
He did not seem vain to me despite rumors and I had great respect for his discipline and skill.

We last crossed paths 20 years ago while I was with Jello and Catherine and brother Greg doing a climbing video in Taylor Canyon.
As I recall Patrick and Maurice were on Primrose, and the next evening they treated me to mexican in Moab.

To my mind Edlinger is truly one of the great climbing pioneers, and personable as well.

from out where the anecdotes roam
Nov 15, 2012 - 08:38am PT
i had no personal experience to accompany the word delirium till he pulled to the top at snowbird.

Trad climber
Sierra Vista
Nov 15, 2012 - 08:58am PT
I believe he runs a climbers Gite in La Palud, some friends stayed at 'Edgeclingers' a couple of years ago.

Rivet hanger

Trad climber
Nov 15, 2012 - 09:17am PT
Edlinger made people in Europe discover free-climbing together with Patrick Berhault. See "Opera vertical" or "La vie au bout du doigts"...
They were very close friends, but since my point of view Patrick Berhault was the man. They both took part of the free-climbing boom in France and Europe by the end of 70's, but when Berhault found out that free-climbing had became just a matter of competition and sponsors, he left that world and began alpinism (what Destivelle did some years later). He was a very good free climber in addition of a great alpinist and guide. He died in 2004 in Switzerland when trying to chain the 82 summits of the Alps higher than 4.000 meters in 82 days in winter.
"Sur le fil des 4000" or "La cordée de rêve" are very good film to see!

Trad climber
Kalispell, Montana
Topic Author's Reply - Nov 15, 2012 - 10:09am PT
Wow guys, thanks! Went to bed late last night and woke to this treat. Nice story Patrick A.
And Rivet; I'll have to check out your other Patrick (must be the name) whom I'm embarrassed to not know of. Ron-always a good first hand story.

Is it just me or were his and Henry's style somewhat similar, with the legs hiked way up high, body close to the wall, remaining down in an almost defensive position until he stands up on both legs reaching with the other long limbs into those huge moves?

Anybody know what grades he achieves now at 52 years or so?


Trad climber
Where the Hoback and the mighty Snake River meet
Nov 15, 2012 - 10:33am PT
Spellbinding for sure. Loved watching him climb, but never had the chance to see it in person.

Great stories Patrick & Ron, thanks so much. "That" would have been a treat.

Ajaccio, Corsica, France
Nov 15, 2012 - 11:21am PT

Sport climber
Nov 15, 2012 - 02:29pm PT
From one of the books mentioned by Ron - Verdon Opera Verticale 1983
As I remember it, the names on everybodies lips when I started climbing 20-25 years ago were Lynn Hill, Catherine Destivelle and Patrick Edlinger. They are legends while still alive all three of them.

Forte Di Exilles 2002

Trad climber
Mountain View, CA
Nov 15, 2012 - 04:14pm PT
In the late 80's when I was living in Boulder and Patrick was on a visit I beat him out for the cover shot of an issue of Rocky Mountain Sports and Fitness magazine. First and last time I ever wore lycra for a climb. While I was climbing well that year, my guess is that the reason they chose me over Patrick is that he wanted to get paid :-)
Patrick Oliver

Boulder climber
Fruita, Colorado
Nov 15, 2012 - 08:48pm PT
As I hope was clear, Patrick is and was a good man, and generous.
The "vain" reference has to do with inhibitions. He was a bit
uninhibited, in terms of being unafraid to walk naked through an apartment
with strangers. Maybe a French thing. Who knows?
I did not mean it to refer to some kind of huge ego,
though most who knew him at all would say he did have that, but not
in a very offensive way. I have mostly only good things to say about
my friend.

Trad climber
Kalispell, Montana
Topic Author's Reply - Nov 15, 2012 - 08:56pm PT
If I could climb like that and knew it, I'd be a bit vain myself. No worries Patrick A.

Ajaccio, Corsica, France
Nov 16, 2012 - 05:44am PT
Patrick Oliver

Boulder climber
Fruita, Colorado
Nov 16, 2012 - 06:08am PT
I think that was the name of his cook/photographer, Gerard Kosicki...
And that photo upthread of the shoes, yes, those were the ones
he gave me. I climbed in them until they literally fell off my feet.
I loved them.

Ajaccio, Corsica, France
Nov 16, 2012 - 07:44am PT
Pat, it still would be a great privilege to get the design details and, maybe, some photos of the wooden active camming nut, the Clapper, made by David Rearick...

Trad climber
Nov 16, 2012 - 09:59am PT
check out this video must be early to mid 80's

badass he hangs under roofs at two separate spots with one hand after climbing about 10 min on the first hang and 20 min on the second after sustained continous movement!
Messages 1 - 20 of total 175 in this topic << First  |  < Previous  |  Show All  |  Next >  |  Last >>
Return to Forum List
Our Guidebooks
Check 'em out!
SuperTopo Guidebooks

Try a free sample topo!

SuperTopo on the Web

Recent Route Beta