2014 is the year buildering shakes off its underground roots, going from the esoteric pastime of bored rock-climbers, tights-wearing daredevils and Greenpeace activists into the mainstream. The secret is out: buildering is fun, and the town of Sondrio shows us how it's done. What a fantastic event, with 25 builder problems, speed climbs, trick-lining, high-lining, and a finale up a 40m clock tower. Plus an after-party with bands, beer (I assume, maybe wine? It's Italy after all), and a high percentage of attractive looking people that could compete with any slow motion light-beer or energy drink commercial. A tonne of organizing and community support was required to pull this off -- much kudos to Gruppo Giovani of the Valtellina Alpine Italian Club for arranging it all. Inspiring. Where will the next "Sondrio" arise?
What is buildering?
The term is a play on the word 'bouldering' which is low-level climbing without ropes, often focusing on shorter, harder routes free from equipment.
Isn't it about climbing up the side of skyscrapers?
Yes and no. Urban free-soloing is a more accurate term for a specific aspect of buildering. Most buildering takes place at street level and doesn't involve climbing to a height from which a fall is fatal.
So you don't have to get high?
No. Buildering is typically concerned with comparatively short, technical or powerful problems (i.e., routes) that are high enough to be interesting but not high enough to kill you. Ideally, the descent should not involve down-climbing the ascent.
What is that crash pad for?
Sometimes a bouldering mat will be used to cushion a fall. Harder problems often involve falling off many times before they are unlocked.
Is it legal?
This depends on what you're climbing and where you are. In London, many of the best problems are on public property and draw no interest from the police. University campuses often have good terrain but will draw attention from security guards. Trespass laws are different from country to country and it's worth...
Apr 01, 2014
5th April sees the 5th edition of the event 'Sondrio Street Climbing', a festival of urban climbing taking place in the city of Sondrio, Italy. 25 problems have been set by mountain guide Gianluca Maspes with climbing getting under way at midday and finishing at 6pm. Seniors will then face a semi-final on the granite columns of the Credito Valtelinese Bank before the finalists take on the 40m high clock tower. After the climbing, the main square of the city will host the Sondrio Street Fest, a party featuring live music, food, drink and revelry. Keep an eye out for a video of the event in the coming weeks. A big shout out to all of the sponsors for making it possible and check out the event's Facebook and Twitter feeds for all the latest news.
Mar 21, 2014
Mar 04, 2014
Vadim Makhorov, http://dedmaxopka.livejournal.com/72833.html: "Hello all from the world's biggest city – Shanghai. For about a month Raskalov Vitaliy and I are in China. I already have quite a bit stories to tell about where we have been and what we have seen, but you will read about it in my next post. I dreamed to visit Shanghai for a while. One of the main sights for us was Shanghai tower, a huge skyscraper in the city center, which currently is under construction. The height of it will be 632 meters. When the construction will be completed, the tower will become the highest building in China and world’s second high building after Burj Khalifa (if not to mention TV tower in Tokyo, which is only 2 meters higher). Ten days ago, during the celebration of Chinese New Year, the entire country was resting – all the people had vacations, so as the builders. Everybody was squibbing in their neighborhoods and enjoying the holidays. For us, it was perfect time to climb the tower and a crane jib above it (the highest point is about 650 meters). To...
Feb 14, 2014
Dec 06, 2013
Hey y'all. So we moved to Drupal 7. Don't mind us while the site looks like ass for a little while. I've got some theming work to do. Also, online guidebooks are down for a while as well.
The good news is:
- we're getting a new look.
- it should be easier for admins to post content.
- I'm pregnant.
Only two of the above are true.
Nov 29, 2013
The heightened sensitivity of builderers to the changing nature of mundane bits of the city is something that intrigues me.
Nov 29, 2013
As all buildering-enthusiasts will know, Cambridge has an incredibly rich history of rooftop incursions. Phil Doyle continues this tradition giving us a point-of-view journey across the skyline of his home town.
Oct 22, 2013
...the asshole who's trying to rape women on campus. http://bc.ctvnews.ca/man-tries-to-drag-teen-into-woods-in-another-ubc-se...
Last week our numbers were a little low, three dudes wearing jeans and dark hoodies, skulking around in the bushes and in dark corners. So, lest we freak anyone the fuck out, I think we should call it off out of respect for the ladies.
Or we go vigilante on his ass. (I just watched Kick Ass 2.) Dress as 17 yr old girls?
In other news -- I tweaked something in my arm last week and it still hasn't fully healed. This may or may not be a contributing factor to this week's cancellation.