Ellis Butler-Barker

I grew up with a background in sport, competing in gymnastics and then rugby from an early age. I got into climbing when I was around 14 or 15. Straight away I knew that I was in love with the sport, I bought some shoes and a chalk bag and ended up going down to a local beach everyday after school for months just climbing around on some choss but it taught me a lot about climbing and I then 6 months later I’d climbed my first Font 7C, shortly afterward I managed my first Font 7C+’s and 8A’s.

I then discovered sport climbing when I first visited Anstey’s Cove with good friend Jamie Parffrey and Lewis Richardson, Lewis was trying the classic Cider Soak 8a and I knew instantly that I wanted to get involved with a route like this, even after doing 8A boulders, the thought of doing an 8a route seemed tricky. Cider Soak ended up taking a fair amount of time but I didn’t know much about reappointing at the time so I used to just fall off the last move, lower down, tie back in and have another burn. Often having around 10-15 redpoints in a session. Cider Soak went down, a couple of months later I ended up doing New Power Generation 8b in Gorges du Loup.

Fast forwards a year or 2 and I was suddenly trying my hardest route yet, knowing it was possible. I put a huge amount of effort into climbing this route and trying this one pushed me forward huge amounts in my climbing, I learned a lot about training, projecting, the mental aspect of climbing and also diet.

More recently I had over a year off of climbing due to an injured ankle which would always become inflamed when I tried to climb for some reason, other sports would be fine but climbing also left my ankle swollen forcing me to take some time off but also allowed me to focus on uni a little more. This year I found myself fully recovered from injury and ready to start pushing in my climbing again, I have some goals for this year and with the opening of a new training facility, The Climbing Hangar in Plymouth, I can now push myself hard and hopefully get some projects ticked off.


-Hometown-

Birmingham, UK.

-Projects-

Climbing, 50/50 between bouldering and sport climbing. Outside of climbing I partake in powerlifting and play rugby.

-Successes-

My favourite achievement is doing the second ascent of Brian (8c+) at Anstey’s Cove, this one was the first proper project I had. I had the route in mind from the first time I visited Anstey’s but never believed that this could one day happen, next thing I knew I was clipping the chains to my hardest route yet. Dark Matter Stand (Font 8B+) in Magic Wood, Welcome to Tijuana (8c) in Rodellar and on sighting 8b’s in Rodellar must be up there too!

-Favourite Scarpa-

I love the Drago!

-No Place too Far-

This is a tough one, I’d love to eventually get into some cool big wall or alpine stuff and visit somewhere like Greenland. However right now Hueco Tanks, Red River Gorge and Hampi would have to be on the list.


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