Arborists from around New Zealand gathered on Nelson's Church Hill this afternoon to find out who's the best and fastest tree climber in the land.
It marked the start of a two-day national tree climbing competition to select the best New Zealand talent to head to an international climbing event.
The New Zealand Arboricultural Association annual competition aimed to teach arborists the latest climbing techniques and how to use the latest equipment. Each event tested a competitor's ability to efficiently and safely manoeuvre in a tree while doing work-related tree-care tasks.
Dunedin based tutor in arboriculture Alvar Del Castillo, who was helping to judge climbers in today's speed event up a hoop pine tree, said they were looking for strength and dexterity, and who could get to the top fastest.
The timer was stopped when climbers reached the top of the tree and rang a bell.
It was was "quite special" climbing in the grounds of Nelson's Christ Church Cathedral, with its heritage trees overlooking the city, Mr Del Castillo said.
New Zealand climbers hold the world champion titles for both men and women.
The final championship round begins tomorrow.