World Champion Climbers to Scale Botanic Garden Trees

26 October 2012

Two world champion tree climbers - both New Zealanders - will be competing for top honours in Wellington this weekend.

Women's 'footlock' champion Nicky Ward-Allen and the current men's champion in the same event, James Kilpatrick, will both be showing off their skills at Wellington Botanic Garden. The Husqvarna New Zealand Arboricultural Association National Tree Climbing Competition is on Saturday and Sunday.

Nicky Ward-Allen, from Eltham, set her record for the footlock in Chicago in 2010, climbing a 12m fixed line in 13.26 seconds. James Kilpatrick, from Tauranga, set his record last year Singapore climbing a 15m line in 13.65 seconds.

Thirty-five arborists (five from Wellington) will compete in five events - belayed speed-climbing, work climbing, aerial rescue, secured foot locking (climbing up a fixed line using your feet) and throw-line (throwing a weighted line high into trees to secure your climbing line).

The top climbers are competing for the chance to represent New Zealand for the world title in Toronto, Canada, next year.

On Saturday children can try their hands at tree climbing between 10am and 2pm.

Saturday's events take place near the West Entrance on Glenmore Street.

Sunday's events, including the Masters Challenge final and prize giving on Remembrance Ridge, are near the East Entrance on Salamanca Road, near the Met Office.