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Rocks 'n Reels - two climbing films hit Eugene.

Byline: The Register-Guard

It's climbing time again in Eugene.

The Reel Rock Tour - billed as "the first major international climbing film tour" - makes Eugene one of its 60 stops this week.

Sponsored locally by the University of Oregon Outdoor Program, the screening will take place at 7 p.m. Thursday in 177 Lawrence Hall on campus. Tickets, available only at the door, are $7 for general admission and $5 for UO students and members of the Outdoor Program cooperative.

Two films are to be shown:

"First Ascent," produced and directed by Peter Mortimer, features top rock climbers laying siege to steep faces and soaring alpine walls in pursuit of various "first ascent" honors. The film takes viewers to high Himalayan peaks, the rocky coast of Thailand and Hollywood, where Timmy (the `Urban Ape') O'Neill performs monkey business on tall buildings. A preview segment from "First Ascent" won the grand prize and audience award at a recent mountain film festival in Jackson Hole, Wyo.

"Dosage Volume IV," by Josh Lowell, follows some of the biggest names in sport climbing and bouldering as they make historic ascents at spectacular locations around the world. Segments include Tommy Caldwell's free-climbing marathon at El Capitan in Yosemite National Park, Chris Sharma's first ascent of Dream Catcher in British Columbia, and Lisa Rand's first female ascent of "Scary Grit" routes in England's Peak District.

Reel Rock Tour spokesman Nick Rosen said the tour is "bringing the genre of rock climbing films to a new level."

While climbing films have been well-received at mountain festivals, they have heretofore been somewhat restricted in scope, Rosen said.

Rock climbers "are like rare birds - it's hard to capture them in their native environment because it's a vertical rock wall," Rosen said.

But digital video has overcome many of the logistical limitations of the past, and filmmakers are adding interesting story lines and musical scores.

More information about the films and the climbers featured in them is available at
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Title Annotation:Recreation; An international rock-climbing film tour features enthusiasts at their daring best this Thursday
Publication:The Register-Guard (Eugene, OR)
Date:Oct 10, 2006
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