Offbeat

By Mike Jones


THIS is one guy certainly not tired of hanging around.

Pete Whittaker was pictured appearing to hang upside down like bat in these stomach-churning images.

The professional climber, 27, was on a climb in Canyonlands National Park in America with his friend Tom Randall when the incredible pictures were taken.

PIC BY Tom Randall / CATERS NEWS

But Pete, from Sheffield, said the pose actually gives his arms a rest and allows him to think about his next moves.

He said: “I got into climbing through my parents, they are very into outdoor activities.

“In the picture, I have inserted my feet above my head in to a crack in the roof. With specific foot techniques in the crack you are able to hang entirely off them and rest your arms for the remainder of the climb.

“This particular climb was one of the hardest that we have established in this area and took around six days of practice to complete the climb in one continuous single push from top to bottom, without falling.

PIC BY Tom Randall / CATERS NEWS 

“For me its great fun to be able to pioneer such interesting new routes in an amazing location.

“When I’m hanging upside down like this, it is usually because I am resting.

“Hanging by your legs is obviously a great way to rest your arms. So, when I am hanging upside down all I am focusing on are the next moves I have to do and trying to gain recovery in my arms.”

Fellow climber Tom Randall, also from Sheffield, took the incredible image of his friend.

PIC BY Tom Randall / CATERS NEWS

He said: “We’ve spent many years training for positions like this when climbing, so really it’s about switching off the fear of the exposure and letting your body do what it’s learnt a thousand times before.

“It sounds simple, but in reality it’s probably taken close to 10 years of dedicated climbing to get to this point.