Patrick Edlinger


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Sport climber
Nov 15, 2012 - 11:29am 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
Credit: Guy Delahaye

Trad climber
AKA Dwain, from Apple Valley, Ca. and Vegas!
Nov 15, 2012 - 12:33pm PT
I climbed with Patrick back in the 80s at the Monument.
My photo is even in one of his books that he did about his tour here in the US in the 80s.

Credit: Cosmiccragsman
Credit: Cosmiccragsman

I saw him lead More Monkey than Funky,downclimb and clean it, and then turn around and solo it, up and Down!

It's a wonder you don't hear much about him anymore.

Trad climber
Mountain View, CA
Nov 15, 2012 - 01:14pm 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 :-)

Nov 15, 2012 - 01:25pm PT
Edlinger blew through the Valley in Novenber 93 or 4 for a day to do some bouldering and hang with Kauk, one of his early inspirations, and Kauk dragged me out of the weight room to tag along one day

Kauk showed him a few then-undone problems including what became the Dominator

PE jumps on the holds and tells me to "power-spot" him by pushing his back up while he tried the moves. Then once again, with less pressure

Then he rests, chugs a cigaratte, asks this time for just a spot with no contact...and does the moves out to the lip, getting both hands on the slab! Kauk is standing there thinking his lifetime project is about to go down 3rd try!

At which point PE drops off and walks away, perhaps not wanting to rogue Kauk's problem...

Later FA'd by Ben Moon, or Moffat, at v12, it was the hardest prob in the Valley for years
Patrick Oliver

Boulder climber
Fruita, Colorado
Nov 15, 2012 - 05:48pm 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 - 05:56pm 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 - 02:44am PT
Our "Bible" in the eighties.
Our "Bible" in the eighties.
Credit: nutstory
Patrick Oliver

Boulder climber
Fruita, Colorado
Nov 16, 2012 - 03:08am 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 - 04:44am 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 - 06:59am 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!

Nov 16, 2012 - 08:16am PT
AKA, The Cat, I like the one arm pinky finger pull up in the Vidio.
Steve Grossman

Trad climber
Seattle, WA
Nov 16, 2012 - 09:02am PT
Vive Le Blond!

I still have that BD poster of him tucked, taut and poised on cream-colored quarrystone. I almost sent that poster with Mimi to hang in her office but it would just make the guys grumble and pout. LOL

I bet he is still groovin' to Songs in the Key of Life. It floated him to victory at Snowbird. A Wonderful spirit he has always been and a pleasure to watch move through the air.

Trad climber
Kalispell, Montana
Topic Author's Reply - Nov 16, 2012 - 09:16am PT
MountainLion. Yeah, that is pretty exciting when he hangs. Pretty sure that's the same video from the first post.

But I liked it just as much.

Trad climber
Kalispell, Montana
Topic Author's Reply - Nov 16, 2012 - 09:20am PT
Here's the one from SnoBird. The movie was edited so that it looks like he's climbing side by side against Wolfgang. That really gives it some perspective I believe.


Trad climber
Kalispell, Montana
Topic Author's Reply - Nov 16, 2012 - 09:23am PT
And if you haven't seen this one, take the time. The opera music while he climbs barefoot. Nice.

Mountain climber
Northern surly
Nov 16, 2012 - 09:42am PT
Not sure at all why people would say he was arrogant or had a big ego.

My Dad bought me one of his first books and next thing u know there he is right in Camp 4 parking lot.

I just walked up to him like any other hero worshipper, and low and behold he got out of his seat shook my hand and talk to be about Verdon for an hour. He never forgot my name, always stop to talk when ever I saw him and was strikingly humble and kind.

Reminds me a lot of Chris Sharma, the nicest guy at the crags.

Seems to me that we like to knock our people down to make ourselves feel better, make up stories about how big an ego we all have. Take are great climbs down to a reach move, or finger size.

Bottom line was Patrick was neither arrogant, vain or whatever, just a kind humble man that little minds want to cut down to size.

He will always be a hero more for his love of climbing and like SG said just laid back love of life.

Social climber
Los Angeles currently St. Antonin, France
Nov 16, 2012 - 09:49am PT
Coz I could say the same thing about you, Those early films of Edlinger were life changing. Took me years, but now I live in the south of France.

Trad climber
'cross the great divide
Nov 16, 2012 - 10:15am PT
I agree with Coz. I met Patrick in Eldorado one day, after a day of cragging with Derek Hersey. Derek and Patrick were old friends, if memory serves from previous visits of Patrick to the USA. Patrick was not speaking English, but through his traveling campanion he said that Eldorado was one of his favorite places to climb in the world.

He was friendly, enthusiastic, and very approachable. I found it very down to earth on his part that a Euro limestone superhero would travel to Boulder to climb in Eldo. Had there been a trace of arrogance, Derek would have picked up on it and razzed him somehow. As it stood, it was obvious that there was a lot of mutual respect between the two.

right here, right now
Nov 16, 2012 - 10:16am PT
Nice to see those videos again!

For those of us hitting it in the late 70s and early/mid/late 80s he was a phenomenal player. On that trip which Ron speaks of in the early 90s, he was waiting for camera to get into position on Sphinx Crack and passed the time by lay backing up and down the thing!

His buddy Maurice, "Momo", is a hoot.

Those original, first generation Dolomite Edelinger rock shoes were stiff as boards out of the box; designed specifically for pocket poking. I could edge in them but little else. I can see how they'd be good for Eldorado after some break-in.

I asked Lynn about him not too long ago and while not disparaging, the report wasn't super great, although it sounds like he is still climbing when he wants to.

He effected a huge influence in world free climbing.
It's good to be young: long live the heroes of all generations!
Brian in SLC

Social climber
Salt Lake City, UT
Nov 16, 2012 - 10:19am PT
Verdon Opera Vertical 1983
Verdon Opera Vertical 1983
Credit: Brian in SLC
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