On The Up

September 04th, 2019
On The Up
Uraidla local Nick Norton has put his name forward to compete in the first ever Freestyle Tree Climbing competition at the Uraidla Show—it will be his second ever tree climbing competition following his participation in Red Bull’s ‘Branched Out’ a few weeks prior.

The 27 year old has been climbing trees professionally for four years and said it can be one of the most nerve-wrecking experiences if you don’t know what you’re doing.

“When I first started climbing it was a really tense, nail-biting situation,” he said.

“It still can make me nervous when I’m high up in a huge tree, but I trust in the strength of my equipment and that tends to settle me into it pretty well.

“It’s about trusting your gear and climbing in the right conditions making sure to avoid power lines and hold off in bad weather conditions.”

Nick said the adrenaline-pumping activity can be extremely dangerous for beginners.

“Beginners sometimes want to race up and down massive trees straight away, but doing that can lead to severe injuries,” he said.

“Luckily for me, the only real injuries I have suffered were small cuts on my hands from a handsaw.

“The technology available to climbers today is a lot better than it used to be. Climbing is still a dangerous and difficult thing to do, but it is easier with the right gear.”

The competition will see 25 climbers go head-to-head racing to the top of Uraidla Showground’s 130 year old pine tree.

The South Australian Society of Arboricultre (SASA) Chairman Tom Stevens said the event is set to be invigorating and is open to experienced climbers.

“We have capped entrant numbers at 25 and the climb event is open to competitors with at least two years’ experience in the tree climbing industry,” he said.

“Competitors will be scaling up to 25 metres of the 30 metre tree on the day.

“So far, we have made a call out on social media for expressions of interest and have received over 15 responses.

“Entry forms for the climb should be released in a couple of weeks.”

Uraidla Show Convener Di Liebelt said the event is sure to be a thrill to watch and participate in.

“I’m so excited to see the event come together at the show—it’s taken a lot of effort to get everything organised and ready including pruning the massive tree,” she said.

“The tree that competitors are going to climb is at least 130 years old and is an absolute giant.

“The event will take about five or six hours all up on the day.”

Di said the inspiration to create the event did not only come through the collaboration with SASA.

“The whole idea actually came from my son who is currently overseas in Edinburgh in Scotland,” she said.

“He saw this really thrilling pole climb event at a show over there, similar to the show we have in Adelaide, and was absolutely dead set on having something similar at our country show in Uraidla.

“So, we got in touch with Tom from SASA and everybody came together to get it set up. It’s going to be a really exciting day.”

The freestyle climbing competition will be held on Sunday, November 3 at the Uraidla Showgrounds.

Competitor entry will be given based on experience and on a first come, first served basis.

For more information about the event please contact SASA via email on southaustralianarb@gmail.com.

Back  Back

The Weekender Herald

The Weekender Herald aims to provide the best print medium for our clients to achieve the maximum exposure for their messages to our readers and their potential clients within our targeted area.

The Weekender Herald is an independent, innovative, good-news paper serving the Adelaide Hills and Mt Barker council areas. Founded in 1992, the paper is the leader in providing up-to-date, relevant lifestyle content. It seeks to maximise its appeal and relevance to readers and consumers on behalf of its advertisters.