Skip to content
September 27, 2011 / availableworld

Extreme Photo of the Week


Trad Climbing the Needles, Black Hills, South Dakota

Photograph by Dawn Kish

Imagine climbing one of these granite spires. Or ten. In a single day.

Climbing legend John “Verm” Sherman, 52, first considered climbing the Ten Pins in a day—known as “the Strike,” in the Needles of the Black Hills—two decades ago. One partially paralyzed arm, a separated right shoulder, and two artificial hips later, he gave it a shot last July with climbing partner Cheyenne Chaffee, a local guide. “Even though the Strike requires a degree of physical stamina, the main challenge was mental—holding it together on run-out terrain where a fall could be a career-ender,” says Sherman.

Here, Sherman is seen leading on Super Pin, an elite-level climb and the most iconic of the Ten Pins. It is known for its “X” factor, which, in climbing, is the potential for a deadly fall due to lack of protection. “I stood up very, very carefully on the summit,” recalls Sherman. “It’s about the size of a 12-pack on top.”

Getting the Shot
Shooting all Ten Pins in one day is as much a challenge for the photographer as it is for the climber. For this shot, photographer Dawn Kish, a longtime rock climber, set herself on a nearby pin, Tent Peg. She then rappelled up and down a line to get the best angle. “We were tired in the middle of the day, but we had some Coca-Cola and Cheetos,” notes Kish, who captured the image using a Nikon D7000. “This camera is fast and light. For climbing shots, you need that flexibility.”

Photo: Cyrille Oumedjkane of France dives from the 27 metre platform on the Institute of Contemporary Art building at the Red Bull Cliff Diving World Series in Boston
Photo: JT Holmes skis off a cliff in Squaw Valley, California
Photo: Surfer Ramon Navarro on a big wave at the Quiksilver Punta de Lobos in Chile
Photo: Mario Richards BASE jumps from Fischer Tower in Utah
Photo: Tyler Ceccanti skiing on Crystal Mountain in Washington
Photo: Jessa Younker deep water soloing in Thailand on Poda Island
Photo: A man paraglides over a beach in Mozambique
Photo: Cyclists bike down the Massiac pass during the 9th stage of the Tour de France 2011

2011 Tour de France

Photograph by Christophe Ena, AP

Cyclists race down Massiac pass during the 9th stage of the 2011 Tour de France. This stage of the race—there are 21 total—covered 129 miles from Issoire to Saint-Flour in central France and was the scene of several accidents due to pileups and wet roads. Over the three weeks of the race, which ends July 24 on the Champs-Élysées in Paris, cyclists cover 2,132 miles.

Photo: Chase O Leary bodyboards at the Shark Island Challenge in Australia
Photo: John Furneaux climbing in Squamish British Columbia Canada
Photo: Julian Carr skiing at Alta in Utah
Photo: Renan Ozturk slacklining over the Gavea Stone in Rio de Janeiro
Photo: James Pearson climbing the Arch of Bishekele in the Ennedi desert in Chad
Photo: Guilly Brandao kiteboarding in Brazil
Photo: Chuck Patterson paddle surfing inside a wave barrel
Photo: Kenny Belaey performs trick on his bike on top of Table Mountain in Capetown South Africa
Photo: Kayaker on Seti River in Nepal
Photo: Ryan Hailstones body surfing on the North Shore of Hawaii
Photo: Will Gadd ice climbs in Eidfjord, Norway
Photo: A skier jumps over Baker Road gap at night
Photo: Dean Potter climbs in Yosemite National Park

Free Soloing in Yosemite National Park

Photograph by Mikey Schaefer, National Geographic

With no rope to save him from a fall, daredevil climber Dean Potter free solos a route called Heaven on Glacier Point in Yosemite National Park, California. Half Dome appears in the distance.

Watch videos of amazing feats by Potter and other superclimbers of Yosemite featured in the May 2011 issue of National Geographic (read the article or see the photo gallery). Then unlock bonus video clips when you share them via Facebook or Twitter.
Photo: Kayaker going down a waterfall

Kayaking La Paz Falls, Costa Rica

Photograph by Lucas Gilman

Professional kayaker Pat Keller plunges over 120-foot La Paz Falls in the central highlands of Costa Rica. Keller survived the extreme drop—though he broke his right hand.

Photo: Surfer on big wave

Surfing Waimea Bay, Hawaii

Photograph by Dave Collyer

Surfer Jamilah Star escapes a close-out, a wave that breaks along its entire length all at once, at Waimea Bay on the North Shore of Oahu, Hawaii. “As the swell got bigger, the crowd got thinner,” says photographer Dave Collyer. “This was one of the waves that closed out. Two Jet Skis barely made it over this wave, and Jamilah, who had just paddled out, barely got over the top of the crest.
Photo: A person backcountry skiing
Photo: Trekkers in Abu Dhabi desert

Abu Dhabi Adventure Challenge

Photograph by Monica Dalmasso, Abu Dhabi Adventure Challenge

Competitors in the 2010 Abu Dhabi Adventure Challenge trek across the desert during the six-day endurance race. Racers began with a triathlon-style prologue in Abu Dhabi city, then traveled by bus to Al Ain, where they confronted the Jebel Hafeet mountain range. Next they hiked across the Rub al Khali desert before ending the challenge with a sea kayaking leg.

Photo: Several people BASE jumping in Utah
Photo: Hiker on Thorung La Pass in Nepal

Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

%d bloggers like this: