Dave MacLeod hanging about on Echo Wall, Ben Nevis. Pic Claire MacLeod
We filmed Dave working Echo Wall a couple of years ago; some of the footage from that went into the 'Future of Hard Trad' chapter in our recent film 'Committed Vol.1'. I have to admit, I personally thought that the ascent of this wall would have been further into the future!
It is certainly a futuristic route, a quick examination of Dave's rope strategy is evidence of that. In case you missed this detail, Dave set off with two ropes, half way up he untied and dropped one of the ropes and towards the top he dropped the second rope and soloed to the top. It reminded me of the way the Space Shuttle ditches booster rockets as it travels higher through the atmosphere.
I spoke to MacLeod about this and he commented that it felt quite odd topping out on this route with no ropes left on his harness, nothing to untie, no need to shout “take me off” to your belayer.
A cold looking Claire MacLeod during one of the many filming days on Ben Nevis. Pic Dave MacLeod
Dave's ascent was filmed by his wife, Claire, for a film Dave and Claire are making which is due out in the autumn. Hats off to Claire for the effort she put in to film this route. That's a big walk in with heavy camera gear... not to mention watching your husband climbing 9a above a 20M ground-fall. I think you've earned a rest Claire... I suggest 600 hours sat in an edit suite ;-)
I look forward to watching the film in the autumn.