Capturing Midnight Lightning w/ Tommy Caldwell & Corey Rich


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Ice climber
Vienna, VA
Feb 9, 2009 - 06:44pm PT
Yeah I started climbing some 6 yrs ago on the East Coast and hadn't heard of ML until I got this piece of news... I had read quite a bit about The Thimble though... Maybe it would be better to call ML a worldwide famous problem and avoid the "most"...

Boulder climber
Livermore, Ca
Feb 11, 2009 - 12:13am PT
I really dig the work the Corey put into shooting the stills. It is a big step forward in multimedia production. And Corey being my biggest hero in photography makes it all the better.

Bishop, CA
Feb 11, 2009 - 12:26am PT
What a great boulder. I was lucky enough to a few prime weather bouldering days in Camp 4 last fall. Hopefully I'll get some more time there in the spring.

Trad climber
Las Vegas
Feb 11, 2009 - 06:55pm PT

I am with Jaybro and the others that say the Thimble is a more iconic problem. But then I read about Gills achievement long before Midnight lightning had been done.


Kaulk must be becoming aware and cautious of what he says publicly.
Bachar in his slide shows still freely talks about the 'enhanced awareness' that Yabo was under the influence of when he first conceptualized the moves of the problem, info not typically volunteered these days.


Kaulk talks about the symbol of the 'Bolt'. He seems to draw no solid conclusion as to the effect or purpose of the symbol.
I first arrived in C-4 in the fall of 79. At that time I was completely ignorant to the existence of the 'Stone Masters'. I was in the habit of leathering the uppers of my EB's but I will never forget the first time I saw a pair of EB's with the bolt stitched into the applied leather uppers. Neither here nor there but I do not remember who they belonged too. It was in the C-4 rescue site gym. I am thinking they were Cashner's.
From that time on I always made a mental correlation between the Stone Masters, Kaulk and Midnight lightning.

Is this just me ^ ?


Big Wall climber
A Token of My Extreme
Feb 11, 2009 - 07:47pm PT
Super cool.

I also heard of the Thimble first, because it was done first.
I think it holds the more significant status, but not more famous.

It's in the middle of Camp IV for cryin' out loud.
There are thousands of climbers who have oggled that thing that haven't had the pleasure of reading about Gill.
They should.

Mountain climber
San Diego
Feb 11, 2009 - 09:37pm PT
Awesome resource! I say resource, because I will view this video over and over and over again.

The video is really good. Short but very good. I really liked hearing Kauk talk about ML. I would like to know more about that whole story. I know it was kinda a competition between Kauk and Bacher, with Kauk being the first to pull it off. I know that some issue of Climbing mag covers this in the mags hay-day. Perhaps someone could find that article and scan it? Hint. Hint.

It has been years since I have tried, but I did make it to the lightning bolt hold, couldn't match and then fell, like I'm sure so many have. Great, I got to the beginning of the crux section. Wow. The beta is all here, watching Tommy over and over. There is No Excuse now right??????

It is a nice dream to dream about. I would like to try again. Thanks for sharing this.

Gym climber
Mammoth Lakes, CA
Feb 11, 2009 - 11:20pm PT
Nice pics of Tommy!

Who drew that damn bolt there? What a bonehead....
Jeremy Handren

Feb 12, 2009 - 12:08am PT
Does that ranger actually believe that Yosemite is the birthplace of modern climbing? Yogi needs a history lesson.

Trad climber
the campfire just a ways past Chris' Taco stand
Feb 12, 2009 - 12:20am PT
I won't weigh in because I don't know sh#t from shinola when it comes to this stuff (though these problems are neither!). An interesting history lesson in a dynamic kind of way.

Does anyone have any photos of the Thimble? I'm intrigued.

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