Renan Ozturk: On Denali, Cineflex, and Alex Honnold


After several days camped on the Ruth Glacier at the base of Mount McKinley professional climber and artist Renan Ozturk is at the beginning of a long project. He had the cheerful expression of a kid in a candy store as he sorted his gear still flaked with snow off an Otter turbo-pro cargo plane in the mountain gateway town of Talkeetna, Alaska. Traveling with friends alpinist/writer Freddie Wilkinson and big wall free soloist Alex Honnold, Renan recently made the initial foray into this region first made famous by the great cartographer Bradford Washburn.

Also called Denali at 20,328 feet this peak is the highest physical point in North America. And as it happens this section of the Alaska Range is home to some of tallest big-wall rock faces in the world. Hoping to duplicate and perhaps improve upon the classic Washburn aerial photographs from the middle of the 20th Century Renan is using a high resolution helicopter-mounted Cineflex camera to capture images on a monumental scale.

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I’m a freelance journalist that specializes in telling stories about outdoor recreation, environmental conservation, acts of charitable giving and practices of sustainable living.