||Haston was for many years, ‘The Forgotten Man’ of British climbing. Although he has been a mountaineering over-achiever for 30 years it is only relatively recently that the climbing media appear to have recognised his amazing track record, and belatedly accorded him the attention it is due. Haston was leading ‘Extreme’ rock and ice climbs and hard alpine routes by his teens. Soon he had graduated onto performances like the second winter ascent of Eiger North Face, climbing some of the hardest rock routes in Wales without prior knowledge or practice and also soloing hard routes, doing Grade VII ice routes, the first free solo of the major alpine route, The Walker Spur, putting up E7s. After some training-induced injury his energy slowed for a while during the late 80s (in Haston terms ‘faltered’ means being one of the first Brits to on sight F7c). Renaissance occurred in 1990 on a trip to Shivling in the Indian Himalaya where he met his future wife and climbing partner, the ace climber Laurence Goualt. A move to Chamonix followed where Haston announced his return to battle in no uncertain terms, on sighting F8a, redpointing F8c, making first ascents of VII (Scottish IX) ice-falls, and free-soloing the Walker Spur in winter in just 8 hours. In 1996 Stevie set out to conquer the U.S., introducing himself to the startled Americans by cruising up yet another ‘Hardest ice route in the world’; Jeff Lowe’s much photographed Octopussy (M8), followed by Will Gadd’s route Amphibian (M9). Since then he has ascended even more difficult routes in Italy and has attempted to snowboard down Everest! Never short of a controversial opinion, and famously outspoken and iconoclastic, Haston is in constant demand as a public speaker, as well as appearing frequently on TV and in magazines.
Further reading: Stevie Haston writes a regular column in On the Edge magazine.
||Biographical information is kindly supplied by Colin Wells.|