On Episode 232 of the Enormocast, I meet up across the pond with fellow podcaster, Niall Grimes. Niall grew up during “The Troubles” in Northern Ireland and learned to climb on his local crags amid that terrible conflict. But as soon as he knew what was good for him, Niall moved the storied city of Sheffield in England. In Sheffield, Niall fell into the climbing scene like it was his long lost home. Soon he found a need to write about the climbing culture around him often with hilarious satirical results. Somewhere in the mix, Niall also started The Jam Crack Podcast. Now past 50, Niall reflects on his privileged life as a climber and a voice in U.K. climbing culture.
On Episode 214 of the Enormocast, I beam myself to Sheffield, England, the heart of British climbing, to talk to Pete Whittaker. Pete is one half of the infamous Wide Boyz but not just an offwidth climber. His prowess on cracks of all sizes is well known and has lead to his new definitive modern crack climbing instruction book cleverly called, Crack Climbing. But on top of that acumen, Pete is also a brilliant trad climber and Grit climber. Finally, his bigwall record in Yosemite is quite astounding with several free ascents of the Big Stone and even a one day rope solo ascent of the Free Rider. Known, too, for a cheeky sense of humor and his rolling real-life-buddy-movie with Tom Randall, it always seems like Pete is indeed Alex Lowe’s mythical Best-Climber-Having-the-Most-Fun.
On Episode 195 of the Enormocast, I sit down in my comfortable study with British climber Tom Randall. Tom just happened to be driving by in a snowstorm and turned up on my doorstep desperate for shelter. So we made a deal: warmth and comfort for an Enormocast. Tom talks about his entry into the gladiatorial climbing scene in Sheffield, England, how his crack addiction started despite the lack of cracks in the UK, and the battle that him and Pete Whittaker took on with the world’s hardest offwidth (?!?!?), Century Crack in Canyonlands National Park. Good cheer and good tales abound in this rare Anglophile edition of the Enormocast.