Photos: A totally insane climb under rock and ice

Super-climber Will Gadd attacks the world's most challenging mixed climb: Canada's Helmcken Falls.

Will Gadd rarely disappoints. For the last 20 years he's been doing some of the wildest climbs on rock and ice. A return to Helmcken Falls was to be his swan song — one last all-out blast before the 46-year-old moved on from purely athletic feats to more 'sedentary' exploratory challenges. (We suspect Gadd's version of 'sedentary' varies from the average human being's.)

There was one line in particular he had his sights on. “It's the gnarliest mixed route in the world – a line I've long wanted to do but couldn't figure out how,” he told us prior to setting off. He prepared by training harder than he had his whole life, but the climbing wasn't the only hard part. There was also the very real danger – of massive icicles falling on his head. Check out the images below to see how he got along.