VIDEO FROM THE VAULT: Sean McColl’s Crazy Moves

When the rest of the press moved to the other side of the stage, our then website editor stayed right where he was for the clear shot, and caught the flying iron cross.

Heading out the door? Read this article on the new Outside+ app available now on iOS devices for members! Download the app.

This video is free for you to enjoy. Sign up with an Outside+ membership, and get unlimited access to thousands of stories, videos  and articles on and, plus a print subscription to Climbing and our annual coffee-table edition of AscentOutside+ members receive other valuable benefits including a  Gaia GPS Premium membership. Join here.


Summer 2016, the beloved GoPro Mountain Games. Our then website editor, Hayden Carpenter, was ringside as Sean McColl (CAN) came out to M3, a stumper. At the same time, a top contender for the women’s crown came out, and the crowds in the press section moved to the other side of the stage. Carpenter (then of Rock and Ice, now merged with Climbing), stayed right where he was for the clear shot, and caught the flying iron cross. This film clip was a top player on the GoPro Games website, with hundreds of thousands of views.

The best is McColl’s expression when he goes full corkscrew. He, too, knows it’s crazy.

McColl, long the top male Canadian competitor, came close to topping the problem next go, coming off below the final hold. He finished sixth, having made finals.

The event was an IFSC Bouldering World Cup. If you are wondering who won at Vail that year, it was the USA’s Megan Mascarenas for her second gold in Vail, with Shauna Coxsey (UK) in second and Anna Stöhr (AUS) third. Kokoro Fujii (JPN) ruled for men, with Tomoa Narasaki (JPN) in second, and Aleksei Rubtsov (RUS) third.

If you are wondering what McColl is doing lately, he and his compatriot Alannah Yip are off to the Olympics, which begin in three weeks, with climbing events August 3-6. Also Olympics-bound from the above-mentioned are Coxsey, Narasaki, and Rubtsov. Best luck to them all.

It must be kooky turn-around moves day. We have also published a clever spin from the UK’s Molly Thompson-Smith, subverting the jump intended by setters. See that video here. 




Trending on Climbing

Film: How Matt Cornell Free Soloed One of America’s Classic Hard Mixed Routes

"The Nutcracker" explores the mental challenges of solo climbing and the tactics Cornell used to help him send the route.