Wadi Rum in Jordan, sometimes called the Valley of the Moon, is home to a rock formation called the Pillar of Wisdom. Standing at 1,148 feet, the peak is exceptionally difficult to climb. But 35-year-old Leo Houlding of Cumbria, England, wasn’t deterred from making an attempt.
The location is iconic, and has been used as the backdrop for many Hollywood movies, including Rogue One, Lawrence of Arabia and The Martian. And the area is also famous as for attracting professional and amateur climbers. The earliest known ascents were completed by the local Bedouin people.
In modern times, climbers have rediscovered old tracks and routes across the area, and several books have been published on the subject. In fact, it has been an attraction for rock climbers since the 1980s. And the tall pillars are apparently riddled with canyons, which offer further opportunities to climb.