Rick White (rock climber)

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Rick White (1946 – 26 November 2004)[1] was an Australian rock climber, best known for discovering and developing the rock climbing destination of Frog Buttress near Boonah in Queensland, Australia.

During the late 1960s and 1970s, Rick White and his friends pushed the physical, mental and technological limits of free and aid climbing, dragging the Queensland climbing scene into the modern era. As climbing equipment was extremely hard to purchase in Australia around this time, Rick White founded Mountain Designs[2] as a way to import gear from the United States.

Rick White was the first person to solo Ball's Pyramid, and did so with an impressive time of 1 hour and 45 minutes.[3] Many of his first ascents remain challenging for the most talented climbers today.

Rick White's mountaineering ascents included: [4]
1973 - First Australian ascent of El Capitan, Yosemite, USA.
1974/5 - North face of Fitzroy, Patagonia with Rob Staszewski.
1979 - Andes, Patagonia with Greg Child, Paul Edwards, Ken Joyce.
1982 - Shivling, India with Greg Child, George Bettemburg (FR), Doug Scott (UK).
1985 - Mustagh Ata with Steve McDowell.

In his later years, Rick White developed a muscular disease that prevented him from climbing. With a lasting passion for the sport, he remained active in the climbing scene for many years, mentoring a number of young competitive climbers including Cass Crane, Peter Crane, Thomas Farrell and Libby Hall.[5][6]

He died in Winchester Hospital in the United Kingdom from cancer; his ashes were scattered from the top of the first route he did at Frog Buttress, 'Corner of Eden'.[7]


  1. ^ News, 27 November 2005
  2. ^ "Heritage - Mountain Designs" Retrieved 3 April 2011
  3. ^ "Rockclimbing.com" Retrieved 28 November 2012
  4. ^ Mountain Designs, "Mountain Designs Sponsored Expeditions of the Six Highest Mountains on Earth", p. 01. 2009.
  5. ^ "Chockstone" Retrieved 29 January 2011
  6. ^ "Peter Crane - Climbing" Retrieved 15 July 2011
  7. ^ "Chockstone" Retrieved 29 January 2011

External links[edit]