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January 25, 2011 11:28 PM   Subscribe

Slacklining at the Totempole in Tasmania. SLYT. (Previously: Funambulism on Wikipedia)
posted by growabrain (24 comments total) 6 users marked this as a favorite

 
I'm having trouble finding the Totempole on this map of Tasmania, which, quite coincidentally, was playing in the background on my machine.
posted by sebastienbailard at 11:43 PM on January 25, 2011


It seems there is not a muscle in the human body that is not used doing this.
posted by weapons-grade pandemonium at 11:47 PM on January 25, 2011


First you have to get up there.
posted by sebastienbailard at 11:54 PM on January 25, 2011


Holy moley you can even see his cheek muscles balancing
posted by mhjb at 12:19 AM on January 26, 2011 [1 favorite]


This conversation leads me to consider the perfect stillness with which I am presently balanced, ass-down, on my futon.
posted by bicyclefish at 12:21 AM on January 26, 2011 [1 favorite]


Isn't the technical term for this type of athlete 'mad bastard'?
posted by Abiezer at 12:55 AM on January 26, 2011


So that's what Iggy Pop's been up to of late...
posted by chavenet at 1:33 AM on January 26, 2011


It looks like he needs to make several attempts before getting it right, isn't this something you could comfortably practice in some less deranged setting? I would expect he would be 110% certain of making it before climbing up there, but maybe he is adjusting to something - the wind possibly?
posted by Dr Dracator at 1:47 AM on January 26, 2011


Isn't the technical term for this type of athlete 'mad bastard'?

Tasmanian. Tasmania produces an astonishingly large amount of outta-the-mainstream crazy bastards than its wee population suggests. Among my circus, burlesque, street performer buddies, a suprising amount of them are from Tasmania.
posted by Jilder at 1:54 AM on January 26, 2011


Obligatory comment about him using a safety line coming from someone who has trouble walking along curbstones without twisting his ankle.

But... isn't that too tight to be a slackline?
posted by sodium lights the horizon at 3:49 AM on January 26, 2011


Who are these skinny, daring men, walking slack lines over abysses, flying down mountainsides on cloth wings, climbing cliff faces and trekking across Antarctica? What becomes of their daring? Where does it take us, where does it lead us? If young men in the prime of their lives are capable of such ingenuity, patience, and bravery, why are we not a calmer, more confident, better led society? We envy and admire these wiry stuntmen yet somehow wish their scorn of death was being expended in some worthy cause -- but I suppose it's art, and it tests the limits of men and materiel and gives us knowledge that may be applied to life-saving and rescue. We are all of us teetering over a great emptiness.
posted by Faze at 3:56 AM on January 26, 2011 [3 favorites]


Somebody's getting old.
posted by Wolof at 4:01 AM on January 26, 2011


How funny would it have been if he knocked the totem over?

I mean, assuming he wasn't squashed by it or anything.
posted by orme at 4:50 AM on January 26, 2011


This new season of "Ow! My Balls!" is going to be great.
posted by dr_dank at 5:11 AM on January 26, 2011 [2 favorites]


The hippies around the corner from me do this in their front yard. When someone is really good, they make it look really easy, but of course it isn't easy at all.
posted by Forktine at 5:28 AM on January 26, 2011


This summer I'm going to try slack-lining over the dog poop in my backyard.
posted by bonobothegreat at 5:54 AM on January 26, 2011 [1 favorite]


I poorly slacklined on Saturday. The first three steps away from the tree are pretty easy. The fourth step is impossible.
posted by spikeleemajortomdickandharryconnickjrmints at 6:24 AM on January 26, 2011


The video confirms a theory I'd formulated about slacklining:

It sounds like one of those things that's way harder than it sounds. CONFIRMED!!

It seems like maybe not a great thing though, honestly, to hammer those fasteners into that thin spire of rock. Seems like it would accelerate the process of erosion big time.
posted by Mister_A at 7:48 AM on January 26, 2011


Good lord I've tried slacklining. You might as well ask me to fly. It's one of the hardest things I've ever been asked to do and if you screw up badly enough you get a whip-crack to the nutsack. And then you fall. So it's impossible and you're physically punished for screwing up.
posted by Baby_Balrog at 9:53 AM on January 26, 2011


I was wondering about the fixed anchors myself. I know the various roping/climbing sports have mixed feelings about this, but that spire did seem like a relatively easy place to simply wrap an anchor around. Would that have altered his stability significantly on a slack line?
posted by OHenryPacey at 10:08 AM on January 26, 2011


I understand the route is fully bolted (presumably from back in the day when such things didn't matter, it was originally aid climbed in the 60s). The bit he is slacklining is how you get off the top after climbing the totempole itself, so all the bolts would have been in place.
posted by markr at 3:04 PM on January 26, 2011 [2 favorites]


"I'm having trouble finding the Totempole"
Mountainproject places it here (green arrow).

"If young men in the prime of their lives are capable of such ingenuity, patience, and bravery, why are we not a calmer, more confident, better led society?"

I think of climbing as satisfying my atavistic urges. These attributes served our ancestors well but in the modern world lead more to marginalization than leadership. Traits such as good interpersonal communication, obedience, consistency and conformity take you a lot farther and are found more in abundance on the golf course than the crag.

"We are all of us teetering over a great emptiness."
Indeed. When you boil it down everything in life is empty, climbing is just more directly so.

"Freeballing" the Lost Arrow Spire (NSFW).
posted by Manjusri at 5:59 PM on January 26, 2011 [1 favorite]


"Freeballing" the Lost Arrow Spire vimeo (NSFW).

Woah. I'd say that doing that takes big balls, but we can see that his are quite normal. Not something I'd do, but impressive to watch.
posted by Forktine at 6:31 PM on January 26, 2011


I'm positive slacklining was invented by bored climbers and boulders for something to do on rain days. Regardless, it is quite impressive, as are the rock features at Totem Pole.
posted by chronic sublime at 3:05 AM on January 27, 2011


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