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    Greenland Vertical Sailing: Watch the Trailer [Updated with Five-Part Video Series]

    Climbing virgin big walls from the deck of a sailboat anchored in frigid ocean waters. You've read the blog posts and seen the pictures, but the best is yet to come. Get ready for a five-part video series featuring Nico Favresse, Olivier Favresse, Seán Villanueva, Ben Ditto and the Reverend Captain Bob Shepton, coming this spring to Patagonia.com.

    Update: The entire five-part series, starting with the trailer, is now embedded above.

    [Vertical Sailing Greenland - Trailer from Patagoniavideo. Video: Seán Villanueva] 

    Greenland Vertical Sailing: The Devil’s Brew [Updated]

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    Impossible mais possible après tout.” (Impossible but possible after all.)

    “I’ve been looking at that wall for twelve years, but I’ve never found any team good enough” Bob Shepton winner of the 2009 Tilman Medal.

    Editor's note: When last we left the crew of Dodo's Delight, they teased the start of a new multi-day climb, on yet another virgin big wall in the fjords of Greenland. Today we're happy to report congratulations are in order as Nico Favresse, Sean Villanueva, Ben Ditto and Olivier Favresse successfully free climbed the Impossible Wall.

    On July 12 we committed to “the impossible wall.” After eight days we found ourselves on the summit, on July 22. So how is it possible that we passed 11 days in only eight you might be asking yourself? The answer my friend lies in the burning midnight sun and 30-hour days or nights or whatever you want to call it. Our efforts on the wall and on our musical instruments yielded probably the most adventurous route we have ever done.

    [(Above) The team on the summit! Bob Shepton was also an undeniable team member and we shared this moment with him through the radio. Photo: Ben Ditto]

    Continue reading "Greenland Vertical Sailing: The Devil’s Brew [Updated]" »

    Greenland Vertical Sailing: Big Wall Island

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    Earlier we told you about Patagonia ambassadors Nicolas Favresse and Sean Villanueva, and their current climbing trip: Greenland Vertical Sailing 2010. Nico and Sean, along with Olivier Favresse and Ben Ditto have stowed aboard Captain Bob Shepton's boat to sail the west coast of Greenland looking for virgin big walls to explore. We thought their last trip to Baffin Island was wild (check out the DVD) but this one is already off the hook. So far it seems like part Liz Clark Voyage and part 180° South, with plenty of boat hijinks and surprises along the way. Let's get you caught up on their trip. [Ben Ditto getting started out of the boat on "Seagulls Garden." Photo: Nico Favresse]

    June 26 - Bob & Dodo’s Delight
    We finally met our reverend captain Bob! He’s the perfect man for the job: he seems even less organized than us. He’s 75 years old, not 65 like we communicated earlier, and in great form. In all his years of experience he only sank one boat! He used to be a fanatic rock climber before he was sailor.

    The boat is floating ... barely. With 600 kg of food and rock climbing gear, and 400L of water, we never thought everything would fit in. However, with some stuffing we managed to push everything into the boat and there is just about enough space left for four and a half humans.

    The boat has a few technical issues we are trying to solve before we launch into the wild.

    Continue reading "Greenland Vertical Sailing: Big Wall Island" »

    Vikings of the Vertical Set Sail for Greenland's Big Walls

    DSC_0023Patagonia Rock Climbing Ambassadors Nico Favresse and Sean Villanueva O'Driscoll, together with Nico's brother Olivier, photographer Ben Ditto, and Bob Shepton (their esteemed sailboat captain) set off on their big summer expedition just over a week ago. You can find regular updates on their partner site Xpedition.be. For those not yet familiar with their unique trip logistics - or their penchant for bringing musical instruments along on their climbs - here's Nico's first post from the voyage (below). Stay tuned for more updates, including special musical jams beamed to us from the big walls:

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    That’s it! We are super psyched to be going to Greenland in a few days. No long walk-in approaches this time (last expedition in Baffin Island we walked almost 600km in total) We’re going to be approaching some remote virgin big walls located on the west coast of Greenland by sailboat (basically straight across from Baffin Island).

    According to our sources there should be a huge amount of unclimbed walls in this area. The sailboat will be our base camp/music studio and means of travel and exploration. Our adventure will not only include the climbing but also the sailing since we will have to sail trough the icebergs and all the way back across the Atlantic to Europe afterwards.

    The spirit of adventure and our motivation to embark on an expedition with a smaller ecological impact and more by fair means, lead us to the idea to combine a climbing expedition with a sail boat for transportation. With a bit of research, Greenland seemed the perfect destination for this adventure.

    [The impossible wall - a virgin big wall. Photo: Bob Shepton]

    Continue reading "Vikings of the Vertical Set Sail for Greenland's Big Walls" »

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