‘Captain Adventure’ reflects on ice climbing dangers after Niagara Falls climb

CALGARY – Friends call him Captain Adventure—and for very good reason.

Will Gadd is back home in Canmore after captivating the world as the first person to climb Niagara Falls.

“All the power and force of the world’s largest waterfall ripping by your shoulder…it’s beautiful, magical, and intense,” he said.

“I’m an ice climber. There’s normally just one person and a goat out there. All of a sudden I’m doing interviews with Japanese TV… it’s gone truly global.”

Gadd has had a year of thrilling feats: tackling one of the hardest mixed route climbs in the world at Helmcken Falls, paragliding from McBride, B.C. to the U.S. border, scaling the ice at the summit of Kilimanjaro and Niagara Falls.

National Geographic named him adventurer of the year—but his deep love for adventure hasn’t come without loss.

Story continues below advertisement

“Since I started doing these sports in my early teens, I’ve known 30 people who have died—skiing, climbing, doing these sports. It’s about one a year.”

Mark Salesse, the Canadian search and rescue technician who died in an avalanche on the Polar Circus last week, was one of such victims Gadd knew.

“It’s a common enjoyable route. Unfortunately, Mark had something not go his way.”

READ MORE: Body of missing ice climber recovered from Alberta mountain

With files from Erika Tucker

Sponsored content