Patrick Edlinger

Posted by: Dana

Patrick Edlinger - 11/16/12 11:16 PM

Patrick Edlinger, ace French climber of the '80s and '90s, has passed away. There is more info. on Mtn. Project and Supertopo.
He came through the 'Gunks once and he gave a clinic on what a real world-class climber could do.
Posted by: schwortz

Re: Patrick Edlinger - 11/17/12 09:54 AM

Posted by: oenophore

Re: Patrick Edlinger - 11/17/12 11:54 AM

There is more info. on Mtn. Project and Supertopo.

Might you give us those URLs?
Posted by: Mike Rawdon

Re: Patrick Edlinger - 11/17/12 12:43 PM

Originally Posted By: oenophore
There is more info. on Mtn. Project and Supertopo.

Might you give us those URLs?

Here's the mp thread:
memorial forum
Posted by: oenophore

Re: Patrick Edlinger - 11/18/12 11:28 AM

Thanks for that, Mike. The cause of death is not revealed in these early reports. Wikipedia posts, "He died in his home at La Palud-sur-Verdon in 2012" So the sport didn't kill him, but one wonders what did.
Posted by: rg@ofmc

Re: Patrick Edlinger - 11/18/12 09:47 PM

As is usual, there is more and deeper information on Supertopo. The Edlinger thread ( began before his untimely death. I have posted to that thread the French text of a Paris-Match obituary together with my no doubt flawed but not completely off translation. That post is at if you want to see the French. The translation I posted is

Patrick Edlinger has made his final ascent. Aged 52, he was found dead at his home in La Palud-sur-Verdon in the Alpes-de-Haute-Provence, according to information from Dauphine Libere. The blond hero of the film Fingertip Life made a lasting mark in the world of climbing. In this film by Jean-Paul Janssen, released in 1982, France discovered the amazing style of this free-climbing master. The local newspaper adds that this athlete, who was about to attend a film festival, had earlier in the week defined himself as "a free man." (Note: although not mentioned in the Paris-Match article, the rest of that quote, from the Dauphine Libere, is "I have no regrets about the path I've taken.")

A true artist of the discipline, Patrick Edlinger had continued to document his exploits, notably in The Vertical Opera, where we see him flowing, hands and feet bare, tens of meters above the ground in the majestic Gorges de Verdon, which he had chosen to live near.

But Patrick Edlinger also had demons. According to the writer Jean-Michel Asselin, who is working on a biography of the climber, he suffered from alcoholism. Patrick Edlinger had confided in the author: "You know, I'm alone in trying to find a solution, this is the hardest battle I've ever fought, like an impossible free solo, but I'll top out. "
Posted by: oenophore

Re: Patrick Edlinger - 11/19/12 10:33 AM

I suppose news of the cause of death awaits an autopsy.
Posted by: Rickster

Re: Patrick Edlinger - 11/19/12 12:26 PM

Originally Posted By: oenophore
I suppose news of the cause of death awaits an autopsy.

Or, they want some privacy and may not divulge.
Posted by: yorick

Re: Patrick Edlinger - 11/19/12 01:22 PM

Edlinger's climbing style transcended sport to art

His appearance in the Gunks late in the summer of '85, after notables like Carrigan, Weigan, Sheppard and Gullich had already made their mark, impressed one young Gunkie more than the others. Though their climbing styles couldn't be any different, Scott Franklin started his tear after witnessing Edlinger.
Posted by: oenophore

Re: Patrick Edlinger - 12/04/12 10:28 PM

From The Independent, a UK newspaper:

03 December 2012 12:01 AM

Patrick Edlinger, who has died aged 52 after falling down stairs at his home, was often described as "the God of free-climbing".

Supremely ironic!
Posted by: chip

Re: Patrick Edlinger - 12/05/12 03:48 PM

Stairway injuries are often dramatic and bad. I agree it seems ironic for Le Blonde to have met his worldly end in such a fashion.
Posted by: Layback

Re: Patrick Edlinger - 12/09/12 06:39 PM

I understand that he was in the process up chipping an easier route up the stairway when the accident occurred.