Jeff Lowe climbing on Ama Dablam in 1979. Photo: Tom Frost

Jeff Lowe climbing on Ama Dablam in 1979. Photo: Tom Frost

One of the major players in the mountaineering world, who is terminally ill, will make an appearance at the upcoming Kendal Mountain Festival.

Jeff Lowe, one of the men behind the founding of the Lowe Alpine brand, will bring his Metanoia film for only its second public screening.

The showing of the film is being seen as a major coup for the Cumbrian festival, and has been made possible because of financial support from Lowe Alpine.

The mountaineer will make the trip from the USA to be at Kendal for the screening of Jeff Lowe’s Metanoia.

Festival director Clive Allen said: “We’ve been in discussion for a little while with Jeff and Connie Self, his partner and the film’s producer.

“I have to say it’s a huge privilege that they have allowed us to screen the film so soon. Jeff is determined to come across and share it with us.

“It wouldn’t have happened though without the support of Lowe Alpine who have stepped in to ensure we have the resource to bring Jeff and Connie across.”

The film explores the life and climbs of the legendary US alpinist. The most talented technical climber of his generation, for 40 years Jeff made his mark across the world: from the big walls of Yosemite and Utah, to the Alps and the great Himalayan peaks.

In 1967, along with his brothers Greg and Mike, he founded Lowe Alpine Systems in Colorado.

Jeff Lowe’s piece de resistance was on North Face of the Eiger. Climbed in 1991, and still unrepeated, Metanoia – graded VII, 5.10, M6, A4 – is the hub of this biographical documentary.

Narrated by Jon Krakauer, the film tells the story behind that climb and what lay beneath Lowe’s high-adventure lifestyle.

For the past decade Mr Lowe has suffered from a relentlessly progressive neurological deterioration, and is now confined to a wheelchair. Since being diagnosed with this terminal disease, he has brought the strength that characterised his climbing career to the physical challenges he faces today, and also to a reassessment of his own mortality.

A KMF spokesperson said: “A tribute to a remarkable man and climber, this is a film about one man’s journey from the top of the world to the end of the line. Kendal Mountain Festival and Lowe Alpine are proud to bring you the British premiere; to introduce and talk about the movie Jeff himself has taken the big decision to travel especially to Kendal for this occasion.”

The film will be screened at the Brewery Arts Centre on Saturday 22 November.

More details are on the Kendal Mountain Festival website.

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