The western United States are home to some of the most beautiful national parks in the country. Tourists and outdoorsmen (and women) travel hundreds of miles for vacation and thrills. One of the most popular rock climbing destinations lies in this area. Nestled in the Sierra Nevada Mountains and the Yosemite Valley sits El Capitan, which extends to 3000 feet at its tallest point.
One of the monolith’s faces is known as The Nose. It was once thought impossible to scale, but is now one of the most popular spots to scale.
In the late 1960s, one of the first groups to climb The Nose consisted of three men and a cameraman, and the resulting documentary is succinctly titled “El Capitan,” which screens tonight at the Clifton Center as this month’s installment of the Wild and Woolly Film Series.
The film follows the three climbers as they spend three days scaling The Nose. This means that two harrowing nights were spent on narrow, precarious ledges. They scaled the wall using nylon webbing belts to attach the rope to their bodies, and instead of using typical nuts to attach the rope to the wall, pitons were hammered into cracks.
This acclaimed documentary was shown at the Banff Mountain Film Festival in 1979 and won awards at several other film festivals, including Telluride, La Plagne, Trento, and Les Diablerets.
“El Capitan” will be shown 7:00 this evening. Glen Denny, who filmed the documentary, will be in attendance to give a short presentation before the film and take part in a Q&A after. Admission is $5.00, or free for Friends of the Clifton Center. A cash bar and concessions will be available before the start of the movie. The format will be 16 mm film (which adds a charm and organic feel not present with DVDs) with help from the Louisville Film Society.
The Clifton Center is located at 2117 Payne Street.
Image courtesy of Wikipedia.