Photographing Climbing Zion National Park Moonlight Buttress

Kurt Astner climbing Moonlight Buttress

The last six weeks has been full of traveling, visiting friends, climbing, and of course shooting it all for both work and fun. But now, life on the road is a wrap. Swapping a car full of climbing gear for a tiny backpack, sandals, and simple camera set up, we are now bound for Vietnam and Cambodia to do personal work. Our 2010 mountain sport shoot schedule is finished.

It ended appropriately with a perfect shoot on one of the best free climbs in America; Zion National Park’s Moonlight Buttress, 5.12d.

Our great friend and Italian climbing star, Kurt Astner, did Moonlight Buttress a couple of days after settling into Zion’s style. I was thrilled when Kurt agreed to go right back on the route the very next day. So good was Moonlight (and so fit is Kurt), that he was actually happy to go lap some of the best pitches, which it turns out, is pretty much all of them.

Together with Thomas Engl, we walked to the top in pre-dawn darkness, rapped in, and began shooting golden sunrise light on the top pitches. This was the day.

Kurt Astner climbing Zion’s Moonlight Buttress

Kurt Astner climbing Zion’s Moonlight Buttress as the first light of the day hits the wall

Kurt powering through a finger crack section

Kurt enjoying the rare mid-pitch rest

Chimney pitch wound

Kurt on the 5.12d dihedral pitch of Moonlight Buttress

Thomas Engl, psyched belayer, soon to do Moonlight himself

Kurt sorting climbing gear

Thomas, not finished with being vertical once on top, goes upside down vertical

Thomas, river jump ballet after rapping the route

Walking out, Moonlight is the sunlit pillar behind

The boys headed for the car


Comments 2

    1. Post

      Thanks Dan! TONS of work, all very much worth it. Zion is superb for everything, we loved it. Your turn, but don’t forget to check your blood sugar… 😉

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