28 episodes

The Cutting Edge presents in-depth interviews with the world's best climbers, just back from great new climbs. Presented by Hilleberg the Tentmaker (http://hilleberg.com) and produced by the editors of the American Alpine Journal.

The Cutting Edge The American Alpine Journal

    • Sports
    • 4.3, 98 Ratings

The Cutting Edge presents in-depth interviews with the world's best climbers, just back from great new climbs. Presented by Hilleberg the Tentmaker (http://hilleberg.com) and produced by the editors of the American Alpine Journal.

    Matteo Della Bordella: Big Wall in India

    Matteo Della Bordella: Big Wall in India

    Italian climber Matteo Della Bordella returns to the Cutting Edge to talk about the first ascent of the west face of Bhagirathi IV. This is a very steep 800-meter wall, entirely above 5,000 meters, in northern India. After several earlier attempts, both in 2015 and in 2019, Matteo and two friends climbed the wall in a bold, lightweight style, reaching the summit in one long day. Remarkably, they did it mostly free, with sustained 5.11 rock climbing. Chris Kalman spoke with Matteo about the climb in mid-May.

    The Cutting Edge podcast is presented by Hilleberg the Tentmaker and produced by the American Alpine Club.

    • 51 min
    Tim Emmett and the Wild Ice Climbs of Helmcken Falls

    Tim Emmett and the Wild Ice Climbs of Helmcken Falls

    The ice climbs of Helmcken Falls in central British Columbia are like no other climbs on Earth. Since 2010, our guest Tim Emmett has been developing "spray ice" climbs at Helmcken, connecting blobs of ice blown onto an enormous overhang by one of North America's most powerful waterfalls. In February, he and Klem Premrl completed their hardest climb yet: Mission to Mars, with the out-of-this-world grade of WI 13. What does that even mean? Find out in episode 28 of the Cutting Edge, as AAJ contributing editor Whitney Clark speaks with Tim about the new route, the history of the area, and this weird and frightening climbing style.

    The Cutting Edge is presented by Hilleberg the Tentmaker (hilleberg.com) and is produced by the American Alpine Club.

    Photo by Jon Glassberg / Louder Than Eleven

    • 34 min
    Leo Houlding on the Lost World of Roraima

    Leo Houlding on the Lost World of Roraima

    Our guest for this episode is Leo Houlding, one of the great expedition leaders of our time. Leo's goal for this year was a new free route on Roraima, a legendary mountain in South America that is steeped in British climbing lore. In 1973, a team of four Brits—Mo Anthoine, Joe Brown, Hamish MacInnes, and Don Whillans—made the first ascent of the super-isolated and dramatic north prow of Roraima. Just getting to the mountain involves a lengthy jungle trek and thousands of feet of climbing through a "slime forest." AAJ editor Chris Kalman spoke with Leo about the soggy approach, the wild 14-pitch climb they found, and helping two local Amerindians, Edward James and Troy Henry, become the first Guyanese to climb their country's most spectacular cliff.

    The Cutting Edge is presented by Hilleberg the Tentmaker (hilleberg.com). This show is produced by the American Alpine Club.

    • 1 hr 2 min
    A Proud Failure: Quentin Roberts on Tengkangpoche

    A Proud Failure: Quentin Roberts on Tengkangpoche

    The north pillar of 6,487-meter Tengkangpoche in Nepal is one of the great unclimbed prizes of the Himalaya. In October, Quentin Roberts from Canada and Juho Knuuttila from Finland spent six days on the wall, reaching a new high point. A blank slab and the climbers' chosen style (no bolts, no portaledge) ended their attempt just a few pitches from easier ground. In this episode, Whitney Clark interviews Quentin Roberts about the climb, the style, and what he plans to do differently when he returns to Tengkangpoche in 2020.

    The Cutting Edge is presented by Hilleberg the Tentmaker, with additional support for this episode from Black Diamond Equipment. This podcast is produced by the American Alpine Club.

    • 30 min
    Nik Berry, Eric Bissell and Conrad Anker: The Russian Tower

    Nik Berry, Eric Bissell and Conrad Anker: The Russian Tower

    In this episode we travel to the Pamir Alai mountains of Kyrgyzstan for a special two-part show. The first part features a conversation with Nik Berry and Eric Bissell, who went to Kyrgyzstan in August with Dave Allfrey and Brent Barghahn to attempt the first free ascent of a huge wall in the Ak-Su valley: the northwest face of Pik Slesova. Their route eventually went free at 5.13a, with eight pitches of 5.12 or harder.

    The line the Americans chose was partly along an old Russian climb (the Moroz Route), which previously had been followed in part by another American team, Conrad Anker and Alex Lowe, way back in 1995. In the second part of this episode, we chat with Anker about his climb, and how he feels about modernizing older routes for free climbing.

    The Cutting Edge is presented by Hilleberg the Tentmaker, with additional support for this episode from Black Diamond Equipment. This podcast is produced by the American Alpine Club.

    • 51 min
    Tom Livingstone: Koyo Zom and the Great Game

    Tom Livingstone: Koyo Zom and the Great Game

    Koyo Zom in northern Pakistan is nearly 7,000 meters tall, and its stunning north face looks like a massive medieval fortress. No one had climbed or even attempted Koyo Zom for more than 40 years. In September, Tom Livingstone and four British friends set out to change that.

    Dividing into two teams, they attempted two lines on Koyo Zom. Tom and his climbing partner, Ally Swinton, succeeded on a very difficult route they called the Great Game (1,500m, ED+). After descending most of the mountain, on the way back to base camp, they had a serious accident, which ended with a helicopter rescue. In Episode 24 of the Cutting Edge, Tom Livingstone talks with the AAJ’s Chris Kalman about the climb, the rescue, and how the “asterisk” on the climb affects his feelings about it.

    The Cutting Edge is sponsored by Hilleberg the Tentmaker (hilleberg.com). This podcast is produced by the American Alpine Club.

    • 46 min

Customer Reviews

4.3 out of 5
98 Ratings

98 Ratings

jud ,

Inspirational

Love listening to these to keep the stoke alive when I can’t be climbing. Really amazing guests and stories!

WoodieClark ,

AAJ commitment to risk management

Wonderfully entertaining and educational it is awesome to see the adventure community embracing risk and applying principles that I personally have used in a career of Naval Aviation as well as commercial flying. We learn best from mistakes and this podcast along with The Sharp End are AWESOME!

drmom12653 ,

Audio like inside a tin can

Very poor audio quality gets in the way of great stories

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