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Jacopo Larcher does 8c and 8b+ on trad gear  Facebook

Adam Ondra fights hard but fails on a 9a OS  Facebook

Adam Ondra onsight attempt in Promotion canne à pêche, 9a, Ve...

Exclusive live video: Adam Ondra, a muerte, attempting onsight Promotion canne à pêche, 9a, Verdon gorge. Click on HD for better quality.

Posted by Fanatic Climbing on Sunday, December 13, 2015

8C FA by Jimmy Webb  Facebook

Jimmy Webb Sending 8c/v15 at Rocktown from Jameson Blount on Vimeo.

Find the best climbs with the 8a Ticklists  Facebook

In our database there are now 3.7 million rated ascents that could help you to find the best crags and routes/boulders in the world. Selecting the next destination, you can search the crag list and analyze average stars and onsight rating etc. In the Ticklists, you can select a grade and a sector and make a list of the routes or boulders you would like to try.

360-Dimensional videos in your mobile or via your mouse  (1) Facebook

Click to Enlarge PictureVirtual Realiy is getting big and the main reason is that it can be viewed on every mobile device without need of external tools. You can automatically use the phone’s internal gyroscopes and browse the scene in 360. It also works great via your computer and the mouse.

Coral Climb is a video production company that has shot outdoor and climbing videos since 1984 but lately they have opened a branch in Los Angeles and it's run by the Italian ex-Pro-climber Lucas Preti. They are testing this new technology and they've sent us an example of what looks like a VR camera on the head of a climber.

Here we attach a link to a youtube video in VR (use chrome or firefox, not safari, to navigate in 360°). Try a 360° boulder video. There is also an option to watch it using mobile apps (more fun because you use the phone's position to look around). Just download the youtube app and you will get a glimpse of the amazing future!

Alizee Dufraisse does 8A in Hampi  Facebook

Here is her full blog report with great pictures.

Improve quicker through technical and tactical sessions  (24) Facebook

Everyone seems to think that the shortcut to improvement is through physical indoor training. This is probably wrong unless you are a competition climber. If you want to climb harder grades outdoors, especially do onsights, you will improve faster doing some technical and tactical sessions.

The dilemma is of course that it is so easy just to follow a physical endurance or maximum power programme compared to doing some training where you actually have to think and challenge yourself also mentally. Here are some exercises that will help you progress technically and tactically.

1. Rainbow onsight - Combine hard colored routes to create new routes
2. One foot - Challenge easier routes using just your left or right foot
3. Exclude holds - Skip some holds for both your hands and feet, forcing yourself to go out of the comfort zone
4. Speed & Stop - Speed climb the routes but add two 1 minute Stop holds

PS The most effective training per minutes invested overall is stretching and fall training but that is so frustrating...

How to train everywhere with Muriel Sarkany  Facebook

How to train everywhere ;-)

How to train everywhere ;-)#MetoliusClimbing #RockRings3D #LaSportiva #SterlingRope #E9 #VolxClimbingHolds #Motivation #AMuerte #Guadeloupe

Posted by Muriel Sarkany on Saturday, December 19, 2015

Necessary Evil - Jon Cardwell  Facebook

Necessary Evil - Jon Cardwell from Matty Hong on Vimeo.

Simone Tentori recap  Facebook

Simone Tentori Recap from Achille Mauri on Vimeo.

Three to trial for the death of Tito Traversa  (11) Facebook

Click to Enlarge PictureIn July 2013, Tito Traversa (12) was on a climbing trip in Orpierre with his Italian club. Tito, who did his first 8b+ when he was 10 years old, borrowed from a friend some quickdraws, which had been wrongly assembled. As he leaned backwards having clipped the anchor, the quickdraws fell apart and the young Italian fell 20 meters to the ground. He died in an hospital.

La Stampa reports that a prosecutor will take three people to trial for the death of Tito Traversa: the president of the climbing club, the climbing instructor of the camp and the company producing the strings to the quickdraws.

8a scoring system in gyms and outdoor events  Facebook

Wild Sport and Philoxenia on Kalymnos plan to run marathon competitions next year based on 8a scorecard point system with La Sportiva as the major sponsor. The concept is simple as you just try to do as many routes as possible during one day and you get points based on the 8a scorecard system. The marathon concept is also planned to be introduced to Melloblocco in coperation with the Vertical Life App and 8a.

The same system can be used in gyms, where you can try to go for a personal best or be ranked every month or so. There is a possibility that you get points on how many clips you do or undo if you are at toprope. Getting to the last clip on a 7b will give you more points than topping out a 7a.

The scorecard point system has been tested out at two Swedish national competitions with great results and no judges or referees were needed. 8a is currently working in corporation with Vertical Life in order to get ready the format, which will be presented to the gyms later. Any gym or event organizer that would like to become a test pilot gym is welcome to contact 8a.

Teenager of 2015 - Preliminary  (3) Facebook

Please comment on this preliminary list and give names we forgot or should be higher ranked.

1. Ashima Shiraishi
2. Janja Garnbret
3. Jongwon Chon
4. Megan Mascarenas
5. Laura Rogora
6. Miho Nonaka
7. Jessica Pilz
8. Anak Verhoeven
9. Nicolas Pelorson
10. Nathaniel Coleman, Giorgia Tesio, Jakob Kronberger, Stefano Carnati, Baptiste Ometz, Stasa Gejo, Loic Zehani, Kai Lightner, Jani Zoraj, Bernhard Röck, Sascha Lehman, Sam Avezou, Yoshiyuki Ogata, Filip Schenk, Ellis Butler-Barker, Giuliano Cameroni, Piotr Schab, Moritz Perwitzschky, Dimitri Vogt, Margo Hayes, Pietro Biagini, Giada Zampa, Matteo Menardi, Maria Ballerini, Kajsa Rosen, Vladislav Schevchenko, Asja Gollo,

Download your free 2016 calendar  Facebook

Click to Enlarge PictureClimbers-Fingers has created a calendar for 2016, which you can download in 16 languages.

South West Utah Bouldering  Facebook

South West from 8HOUSE on Vimeo.

8B by Dave MacLeod  Facebook

4th Wave, 8B first ascent from Dave MacLeod on Vimeo.

Pioneer Bernd Zangerl critical towards the modern 2.0 scene  Facebook

Click to Enlarge PictureBernd Zangerl is one of the first famous boulderers. He opened many of the early hard core problems in Ticino and especially Magic Woods including two 8C+'s that nowadays are considered 8B+.

UKC has made a new interview with the profile of Bernd, currently living and exploring boulders in the Himalaya. In general, the pioneer is very critical towards the modern 2.0 scene and the article finishes in this way:

"There is high pressure in the outdoor industry, so there is also high pressure within the sport itself. Nowadays it's more important to wear the right clothes of the right brand with the right colours. You have to visit the "bouldering hot spots“ of the world and share your private moments on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram. Some athletes spend more time on social media, than on the rocks, because the smart use of various media channels, particularly web 2.0, enables almost everyone to reach a certain reputation by merely spending a few hours per day on the web. This was definitely not the case ten years ago."

In the UKC article he is also critical towards grades and how the community deals with them, which he also said in an 8a article in 2011. He has stated that the reason for why his grades were inflated was because the first repeaters just kept confirming his initial FA grades.

Here is a greatvideo of the FA of Shantaram 8C/+ outside Trondheim. The picture by © Ray Demski/Red Bull Content Pool is from Die Versorgungslinie, which he did this autumn. No FA grade but Bernd says it is his hardest ever and it was done as a five year long ground up project that took 150 tries.

Other quotes from the outspoken great pioneer.

- I want to mention that I don't support those "training camps“, where seven year old kids are following a training programme!
- With the notion of „personal grading“ the rating has lost its original purpose, anyway.
- In the end I (and also Fred Nicole) were indicted for inflation, for using overblown grades.

- Depending on who is grading, or more importantly downgrading a problem, we accept the grade without any further discussions. The achievement of 11-year old Ashima Shiraishi climbing 8B boulders seems less important for the community. Why? Is she a special case of climber, because of her age or weight, her finger-size? But Ondra for example also has very specific physical preconditions, clearly differing from the average climber. Adam for sure can downgrade for example “Shantaram”, skipping two crux moves because of his extraordinary ape index. I am interested in their grade suggestions, but which weight should it be attributed to in the public? Is the “brave” repeater the only voice which holds true? For me “Shantaram” is one of the biggest highlights of my climbing career. It's an extraordinary climb and way harder than anything else I did before. (Personal grade: 8C/8C+)

Destivelle: Winning but hating competitions  Facebook

Click to Enlarge PictureCatherine Destivelle was the first female rock star and was considered #1 sport climber during the late 80-ies and then she continued during the 90-ies with groundbreaking mountaineering ascents. Here is a documentary with the "Rock Queen. Now she is working as a publisher and her latest book is The 9th grade, 150 years of free climbing. On the picture by Uli Weissmeier she is together with Lynn Hill, whom she actually beat most of the times.

How did you like comps and why did you stop so quickly?
I have never enjoyed climbing competitions. The first time I took part in a competition, I just wanted to know what it would be like because until then no competitions had ever taken place in Western Europe. My friends encouraged me to take part, they said I couldn't say I hated competitions until I had actually tried.

That's why I entered the first international climbing competition which took place on a natural rockface in Bardonnecchia, Italy. Taking part in a competition was really stressful for me. Why? To be honest, I was afraid of measuring myself against the others, afraid of losing. I had never competed and I was reputed to be one of the best French climbers; if I lost, my pride would be hurt.

At the end of the day, despite the stress, the competition turned out to be a positive challenge. I won: I came first in everything! At the time, there were three prizes: style, speed and difficulty. Thanks to this outcome, I got several sponsors and I was able to stop working as a physiotherapist and spend all my time climbing.
I didn't consider taking part in other competitions because, above all, I found them stressful. I wanted to climb mountains. Unfortunately this ambition was rapidly jeopardized by a foolish 35 meter fall down a crevasse. I broke my pelvis and my spine and I was lucky to be alive. However, I was weakened by these injuries and I didn't feel strong enough to go back to the mountains.
As the media still presented me as the best woman climber in the world, I felt like I needed to go back to competing. I needed to prove them right, to justify whether it was true. So I returned to compete in Bardonnechia the following year, intent on winning. During that year, I worked hard to build up my strength again. My great rival was going to be Lynn Hill. I thought she was the only one who could beat me. In order to win, I studied the rules of the competition. Speed was still part of the criteria to win. I bet on that, and I won. Phew !... After that, I took part in very few competitions.

X-Mas sale at EPIC TV  Facebook

Click to Enlarge PictureEPICTV SHOP has already started the X-Mas sale. Beside their very low prices there are their some offers, ex.:
1. 300 grams of chalk when buying climbing shoes
2. Free T-shirt when buying E9 or Prana pants or sweaters

The Prana Avril Pants for women cost Euro 45 including free freight and if you are a member it is even cheaper, and then you get that free T-shirt!

Strength basics  Facebook

Desgranges documentary: so high emotional challenges  Facebook

Romain Desgranges won one WC in 2015 and in 2013 he was the European Champion. Now he aims for harder onsights in this great emotional and beautiful documentary movie.

All 82 of Alp summits <4000 m in 62 days by Ueli Steck  (1) Facebook

This is a must see! One of the greatest climbing accomplishments all time. The video story and pictures and also top class.

Alex Honnold takes all the challenges in Angola  Facebook

Salazar bouldering #2  Facebook

Salazar bouldering film part 2 from greenandshiny on Vimeo.

Annalisa de Marco (19) does 8A+  Facebook

Planet Mountain has the full story.

UIAA: 304 bolts are a part of a horror movie  (43) Facebook

UIAA has published a dramatic report with the conclusion that 304 stainless steel bolts are a part of a "horror movie" and they should not be used outdoors. This means that all stainless steel 304 bolts should be removed by Titanium or 316 steel bolts and that 99% of all (1 million???) bolts placed at all crags in the world are at risk.

Most critical factors are: “moderate” relative humidity location, areas NOT washed by rain, high temperatures. Limestone/dolomite is generally worse than sandstone or granite (karst rock is the worst case). UIAA says that within months some bolts will only hold few tens of kilograms.

Here are some answers from UIAA, when asked for clarifications of their dramatic but unclear recommendations that Titanium must be used and why the normal stainless steel quality 304 should be avoided also at inland vertical granite crags etc.

"Tests shall start soon to clarify exactly which stainless steels material
will be suitable (and not only titanium) and the standard should be
updated next year.

The UIAA Safety Commission does not find 304 steel bolts/anchors appropriate for outdoor use because 304 anchors are not expected to last 50 years in the outdoor environment."

The UIAA report has been questioned by Eman Pellizzari.

Off the Beaten Track in Albarracin  Facebook

Off the Beaten Track in Albarracin from David Mason on Vimeo.

Russians dominate in the USA Ice WC  Facebook

1.Maxim Tomilov RUS - Maria Tolokoniva RUS
2. Alexey Tomilov RUS - Ekaterina Vlasova RUS
3. Seregey Tarasov - Angelika Rainer SUI
Full report and here a 51 min video.

8B+ FA by Rok Klancnik above a constructed landing  Facebook

Rok Klancnik has done the FA of Stairway to Heaven 8B+ in Oplotnica, famous also for its constructed landings.

Zillertal with drones and penguin costumes  Facebook

Alex Honnold talking about risk, training and life  Facebook

UIAA horror movie bolt report questioned  Facebook

8a did ask Emanuele Pellizzari, equipper and bolting gear seller and producer, to give some comments in regard to the UIAA statement saying that 304 bolts are a part of a horror movie. It should be stated that 8a mainly agrees with Eman's conclusion.

"Most climbers that read the UIAA press release did not understand, or wanted to understand, what it’s written in it. Most concentrate mainly on the kind of material to be used (or not used). That is the less interesting, and less important, part of it. The release only comes in two languages and a bigger effort to have it translated should have be addressed.

First: UIAA places the lifespan of a bolt in +50 years. This is longer than any equipper thought or expected. This is significantly longer than any supplier with a salt of grain, will guarantee. This can be considered three or more generations of climbers: I think it’s unrealistic. I am not saying it’s bad, I am saying it’s unrealistic.

Second: UIAA acknowledges that no bolter/equipper or individual climber can or will pay for the upgrade in materials they suggest. It also acknowledges that most of those materials (they use the words “cost and availability”), cannot realistically be found/bought. Even many touristic boards wouldn’t pay for the “upgrade”, or they may realize it is not worth to invest in our activity since the return to investment is much lower now.

Third, and this is the point the climbing community did not understand the most, is when UIAA writes: “…the bulk of the climbing population needs to start paying for anchors, whereas in the past most had a “free ride”. Who pays, how they pay, when they pay, how much they pay, etc…this was not mentioned. If all bolts that have been drilled would be replaced according to the release, the cost we talk about amounts in a big sequence of digits… dozens millions Euro.

Finally, UIAA basically discourage any new routing development unless 4 or more times more cost of equipment is used. It discourages any rebolting initiative without proper gear. With such an “official” release, it places 99.99% of bolts now in situ, on the “future unsafe side”. Any landowner that reads this, or any major of a town that understands it, might think the sport it’s unsafe and lock down any outdoor climbing activity. I hope it wouldn’t happen. A sport without development is a dying sport. I feel the sport is safe as long as its community reminds that climbing was, is and will be, a dangerous activity.

My two cents is that the release had good intentions, but it’s such a step forward that the community is not willing to accept it. The industry might accept it since it poses a 4 times increase of turnover in bolting equipment. Were people using the suggested gear when it will be available (if it will be ever be), I have no clue. My lifespan as equipper will not be +50 years. As an equipper/bolter I said in 2012 that I was not paying more than stainless A4/316 to equip routes. I keep this opinion. If other climbers will pay for rebolting with what UIAA considers proper gear, it’s fine for me.

8C traverse by Pirmin Bertle  Facebook

Mediomalomania (8C) - Switzerlands hardest boulder traverse in Lindental near Bern (8C+ trav) from Pirmin Bertle on Vimeo.

8c by Mina Markovic  Facebook

Click to Enlarge PictureMina Markovic, who won the World Cup 2015, has done the FFA of Popolni mrk 8c in Osp/Misja Pec. (c) Luka Fonda, who decribes the route.

"The route is about 35 meters long where the first 15 meters are pumpy followed with a long and very hard boulder on small crimps and bad footholds in gently overhanging wall. After that you get a decent rest on small tufas and exciting steep boulder to finish on top of the wall."

During the last two weeks, Mina has done eight routes 8b and harder in Osp/Misja Pec including three flashes and one 8c+. In the 8a preliminary climber of the year list Mina is #4 after Ondra, Shiraishi and Megos.

Chris Davies does 8A+/B  Facebook

Calw Bouldering, Zickenalarm 8a+/b. from Chris Davies on Vimeo.

9A in 2017 and 10a in 2050  Facebook

Click to Enlarge PictureClimbing and especially bouldering are new sports. Although bouldering became a global sport just some 30 years ago, indoor gyms have only existed for some 15 years. Organized training became popular just about 5 years ago. Yet some think we have reached the limit of human bouldering potential by doing an 8C+.

This is like saying that the mankind reached their maximum on 100 meters when the first 10.0 time was recorded in 1960.

If Adam Ondra or several of the top climbers started focusing on one super boulder project from today, we would of course see several 9A boulders within a year. Naturally, it would be super boring and some of the guys would get injured but doing a 9A would not be anyhow even close to the human bouldering potential limit. Within some 30 years, we might see the first 9A flash and the boulders challenging the first 9B.

The same way of thinking can be implemented in route climbing. Adam Ondra has already said that he has some 9c projects and within some 30 years, climbers might be able to flash 9b+'s and challenge a 10a. In fact, there are probably several 9c to 10a potential projects in Flatanger. (c) Petr Pavlíček

The female 8a climbing heroes  Facebook

Based on some 4 000+ votes, we present the results of the opinion poll Who are your female climbing heroes?:

23% Lynn Hill
10% Alex Puccio, Ashima Shiraishi
07% Anna Stöhr, Nina Caprez, Josune Bereziartu
05% Jain Kim, Shauna Coxsey, Sasha Digulian
04% Mina Markovic, Angela Eiter, Juliane Wurm, Janja Garnbret
02% Robyn Erbesfield-Raboutou, Allizee Dufraisse, Muriel Sarkany

Comparing to a similar poll from 2012, Alex Puccio, Ashima Shiraishi, Juliane Wurm and Janja Garnbret are getting higher numbers. Kind of surprising is that many of the highest numbers are given to the boulderers, which is the opposite to the male, where route climbers were most popular. The 23% for Lynn Hill can be compared to the #1 male, Chris Sharma, who got 13%. The names most frequently mentioned among "Others", were Catherine Destivelle and Barbara Zangerl.

Training regime with Alex Puccio  Facebook

Vertics Sleeves Finalist at ISPO  Facebook

Click to Enlarge PictureVERTICS.Sleeves were chosen by an international jury as ISPO BrandNew Finalist in category Accesories. In the B2B trade fair from 24 to 28 January in Munich the finalists of the BrandNew Awards are in Focus of the sports industry and traders as well as the press'. VERTICS.Sleeves are used in climbing, biking, rowing and motorbike racing sports, and they are allowed at competitions!

What is kind of strange is that beside the Vertics sleeves only a chalk bag from Hanchor was among the finalists representing the climbing industry.

Grading: Boulder deflation vs Route inflation  Facebook

Click to Enlarge PictureUntil 2005, when Dave Graham gave The Story of Two (Grading) Schools 8C, the upper boulder grades outside Fontainebleau were inflated. Many thought Graham's boulder should be given 8C+ to fit the modern grading.

Today, Graham's masterpiece is considered to be a soft 8C and as a matter of a fact, gradewise, the hard core bouldering scene has not progressed that much during the last ten years. The reason for this is that during the last few years the inflated grades have been deflated instead.

It is time that someone make another statement putting up The Story of the three grading schools giving it 8C+. What has happened lately is that the deflation has had also an impact of 8B+, which is now super wide. As almost nobody dares to put up an 8C+, even if the community gets stronger, also boulders that should be 8C's, are becoming 8B+'s.

Alex Honnold solo and diet  Facebook

Jacopo Larcher discovers crack and trad climbing  Facebook

The rediscovery of climbing: a new game. from LJ on Vimeo.

Katja Vidmar in Utah  Facebook

Utah Bouldering Trip from 8HOUSE on Vimeo.

9a by Domen Škofic again  (1) Facebook

Domen Škofic has done Seleccio natural 9a in Santa Linya on his 3rd go. Having done this and onsighted Rock fucks, he goes to the 4th place in the ranking game. His first 9a he did when he was 15 years old and since then he has developed in an interesting way. This year the 21-year-old was also #4 in the Lead World Cup and being from Slovenia, he is a part of their success story.

Sharma does 8b+ from 1986  Facebook

Chris Sharma goes Back to the Future on "Magie Blanche" (8b+) 1986 from Petzl-sport on Vimeo.

Sean McColl crushing in Font  (2) Facebook

Dave Graham, Daniel Woods, Nalle, Nina in South Africa - Trailer  Facebook

ZA: The Trailer from Big Paw Productions on Vimeo.

Third 9a FA in two weeks by Ramonet  Facebook

Click to Enlarge PictureRamon Julian Puigblanque, the best competition climber in the world of the last 15 years, is having his best outdoor season ever. After five days of work, he made his third 9a FA, Cal Rubell in Catalonia.

In total, the double world champion (who won his first WC in 2002 and this year got the European Champion title), has done 47 routes 9a and harder, out of which 16 are FAs.

8c sport on trad gear by Jacopo Larcher  Facebook

Click to Enlarge PictureJacopo Larcher reports on Facebook with a great picture by Richard Felderer that he has done Lapoterapia 8c in Osso without using the bolts and protecting it by crash pads and trad gear instead.

"I arrived by night and rapped down to check the gear by headlamp, in order to have more time to work on the route in the next days. Surprisingly I didn't need so much time, and 3 goes were enough to reach the belay of this beautiful pitch without clipping any bolt! If you make everything well, you shouldn't hit the ground...but well... to place, and trust, the small gear made everything harder and spicer!"

Interesting is that with an 8c grade, this route is a contender to be the hardest trad ascent in the world, which might actualize the problem of different grade systems for trad and sport climbing. The only 8c+ suggested trad route is Beth Rodden's Meltdown.

Lee Cossey 8b FA in Australia  Facebook

Agent Of Cool (31) from Adventure Types on Vimeo.

Favresse' hardest crack in Norway  (13) Facebook

Click to Enlarge PicturePlanet Mountain reports that Nicolas Favresse has opened The Recovery Drink in Jössingfjord - Norway, giving it no grade but saying it is his hardest crack ever, so it should be at least 8c. Nicolas comments that some gear was pre-placed in order to make it easier to clean the 35 m overhanging crack after falls.

I have finally sent my long term king line crack project in Norway last Wednesday! I feel so happy and complete;) It's for sure one of the coolest line I have ever climbed and the hardest crack I have ever redpointed. (c) Jean-Louis Wertz

7C+ flash by Alexandra Ladurner  Facebook

Alexandra Ladurner has made a very impressive flash of Dark dog 7C+ in Zillertal which no other 8a member has flashed, included several top guys. "Totally unexpected. Maybe completely my style...great day!

9a by Mateusz Haladaj  Facebook

Click to Enlarge PictureMateusz Haladaj has done Ciudad de dios which is his fourth 9a in Santa Linya the last 12 months and he is #5 in the ranking game.

"So happy! My desired and hardest project so far. Solid grade considering there are two 8c+ sections in a row, feels closer to 9a+… Very thanks to all the nice people I’ve met in the cave for a great atmosphere and support. Hasta proxima amigos!

8b by Maggie Smith-Odette (43)  Facebook

Maggie Smith-Odette has done her first 8b, Faithless in Coliseum which is very impressive as she started to climb when she was 29 years old and now is 43.
"FFA. hardest thing i've ever done. nothing better than a route that pumps the shit out of you before you get to the hard moves! ***

Two 8B's and two 8c+'s by Alfons Dornauer (19)  Facebook

Alfons Dornauer is in great shape having, the last week, done two 8B boulders in Zillertal and yesterday he did Reality Check 8c+ in Schleier Wasserfall. In the combined ranking game, the 19 year old is #8.

Today he added The Source 8c+ in Zillertal to his impressive Tick list. "3rd go this year, had to brush the route at first, soo dirty!!! Conditions were perfect! One of the most stunning lines in the valley! MASTERPIECE!!!

8B+ FA by Daniel Woods  Facebook

Click to Enlarge PictureDaniel Woods has made yet another high quality hard core test piece by The Purge 8B+ in Elkland. The 23-year-old is #1 in the ranking game which he has been for more or less for the last five years.

"Dave and I found this prow a while back and Dave gave it a try before departing to Europe. He told me it was really good, so I decided to pay it a visit and became obsessed over the movement. The full package line! Crux iron cross from left hand micro crimp to right hand slopery arête leads you into a desperate hand flip into a left hand underclin, followed by compression climbing, The topout is not easy either. I resorted to a night session to get better temps. One of my favorite lines.

Another 9a by Alexander Megos  (10) Facebook

Click to Enlarge reports that Alexander has done Pantera 9a on his third go. An interview with his trainer, Patrick Matros, is coming up.

Regarding Markus Bock, who has put up 13 out of the 15 9a's in Frankenjura, Pantera is the #12 hardest. Alexander has previously done the two hardest during this spring. ©

Corona 9a+ by Alexander Megos  (27) Facebook

Click to Enlarge PictureAlexander Megos has repeated Corona 9a+ which FA (2006) Markus Bock ranks #1 hardest in Frankenjura. "It was a nice route. I liked it a lot.", says Alexander. Adam Ondra made the first repeat in 2009.

Two months ago, the 19 years old made the first 9a onsight, Estato Critico and a second go ascent of La Rambla 9a+. Training article by Megos trainer for five years. (c) Ignacio Sandoval Buron reports that he needed 10 tries over a total of three days spread out over six months and that he did it actually twice in order to get some nice pictures.

Rainshadow 9a by Jordan Buys  (2) Facebook

Click to Enlarge PictureJordan Buys jumps two grades by doing his first 9a, Rainshadow in Malham which was set up by Steve McClure. "Best climbing day of my life so far!!!" (c) CAC.

Steve comments, "A great effort. Jordan has really put the time and effort in, and totally deserves to get the ascent. He's been trying it a lot and was shut down last year by a terribly wet season with awful conditions. I’m really glad that at last a Brit has climbed one of my 9’s – hopefully more will follow, there are another 6 or so out there! Rainshadow is a truly brilliant route, perhaps my best, on the best UK sport cliff.

Era Vella 9a by Michaël Fuselier  (10) Facebook

Click to Enlarge PictureMichaël Fuselier has done Chris Sharma's Era Vella in Margalef, the high class and most repeated 9a in the world. It was Mikaels first 9a for the French who has been a succesful competiton climber who a dozen times have made it into the finals in the Lead World Cup. Here his blog in French with pictures. (c) Ignacio Sandoval Buron

8b+ sport route on trad gear by James Pearson  (6) Facebook

Click to Enlarge PictureJames Pearson has done the first repeat by A Denti Stretti 8b+ at La Balma, 18 years after the FA by Allesandro Manini and he did not use his bolts!

First James made an onsight attempt taking a gigantic fall from the final boulder, 2/3 down the route.

More info at James blog. " It’s funny how you can sometimes make your best performance when you least expect it, when you feel tired, or weak, or just don’t care any more." (c) Riky Felderer

9a+ FA by Alexander Megos  (1) Facebook

Alexander Megos has opened Classified 9a+ in Frankenjura. It was bolted by Carsten Seidel some ten years ago and later Christian Bindhammer rebolted it and made it an open project. Last month the 19-year old onsighted Estado Critico 9a and did La Rambla 9a+ second go in Siurana.

In total, Alexander spent three days on the 20 m project and regarding the grade he uses the 9a+ estimation that was given by both Bindhammer and Markus Bock. More info at

Mind Control 8c (+) by Barbara Raudner (40)  Facebook

Click to Enlarge PictureBarbara Raudner has done Mind Control 8c (+) in Oliana which was put up by Chris Sharma. "For me Mind Control is the most beautiful route I have ever tried. I am very grateful to have had the opportunity to climb such a fantastic line in that international spot in Oliana.

Thanks to all the nice people with who we spend a really great time there. Thanks for all the „venga, venga“!! Hope to see you all again!! Vamos!!"
full story at her website (c) Claudiaziegler

First 8b+ by Kristin Yurdin (42)  (1) Facebook

Click to Enlarge PictureDPM has a nice story of Kristin Yurdin who after nearly twenty years of climbing, has done her first 8b+, Chemical Ali at Smith Rock.

The 42 year old, has been projecting it for three years but she has had limited time as she runs the climbing friendly restaurant Terrebonne Depot with up to 60 hours work.

Part of the success this year was weighted pull-ups after climbing, doing three sets of three pull-ups with 19 kg. Her husband describes also a crucial part of Kristin’s training program as finger-boarding, tread-walling, cutting stuff, grilling things, lifting heavy French fry baskets and carrying cases of wine up 12-foot ladders. Photo: Ian Yurdin

8b again by the Hörst brothers 10 & 12  (11) Facebook

Click to Enlarge PictureCameron Hörst (12) has done True Love in Red River Gorge which was his seventh 8b and harder send. "Really small holds and way reachy for my size. I agree with Mike Doyle, this is harder than God's Own Stone!"

The day after, little brother Jonathan (10) did Swingline 8b. "Great route; very complex-- it took me seven tries." Last month, the little brother did God's Own Stone which goes at 8b+ in the latest topo.

Here is a recent training article focusing on kids progress, made by their father Eric. Eric has sold more than 300 000 climbing training books and has been climbing for more than 35 yeras but when it comes to climbing hard, his sons are now 2-3 grades ahead.

8a+ trad on bolts by Caroline Ciavaldini  (1) Facebook

Click to Enlarge PictureCaroline Ciavaldini blogs about her trad send of the bolted Grazie Ricky 8a+ in Cadarese. "It is a bastion of trad in the Italian Alps and a place of battles between pro-bolts and Trad-addicts. I must say that this granite cliff cut with perfect cracks fits quite well to placing friends!

In short, I was scared to death, but jumped into the route with one thing in my head: in Trad, being scared doesn’t help at all. If you know where to place the protection, you just have to focus on the climb and place your gear quickly and well! Easier said than done you would tell me? Oh no, when I do Trad, there is a little "click", I go into robot mode. Once my decision taken, I climb, and even though I'm afraid somewhere inside of me, it does not interfere with my climbing. Quite a magical moment!

'Estato Crítico', 9a by André Neres  (1) Facebook

Click to Enlarge PictureAndré Neres (pic© Ignacio Sandoval Burón) has done his first 9a, Estado Critico in Siurana. "Epic journey for me. Proud to be able to deal with the time pressure... It was a team sending, for sure, thanks to all involved! :)"

What are your thoughts from the amazing 9a onsight by Alexander Megos? "Well, I think Alex OS was just astonishing. It wasn't "just" an 9a onsight, it's a really hard OS. I mean the route is not the best one for OS. It's technical and demanding in many aspects, a quite intense boulder problem and after power resistance where there are no good holds, you can't just stop and watch carefully what to do.

9a FA by Chris Zehani (38)  (5) Facebook

Click to Enlarge PictureChris Zehani has done his fourth 9a FA, Riders on the storm in Cevennes. "Such a wonderful line very diverse in difficulty, holds and overhangs. To summarize
: the perfect line (hard, beautiful and natural)."
Read full comment. By looking at the trend diagram we can clearly see that the 38 year old is improving year by year.

8b+ (c) onsight by Evgeniya Malamid  (3) Facebook

Click to Enlarge PictureEvgeniya Malamid has onsighted Los Humildes pa Casa 8b+ in Oliana. "It was just the last route of the day and I wasn't going to onsight it."

It was set up as an 8c which some still think it is although the start is changed. The are less than a handful female that have onsighted 8b+ before including an 8c by Charlotte Durif.

The last year Evgeniya was #9 in the Lead World Cup. "This year I'm going to compete in the World Cup and the European Championship, now climbing on rocks is for pleasure and for training before the season!" (c) Heiko Wilhelm

8a and 7c+ OS by Mirko Caballero (12)  (1) Facebook

Click to Enlarge PictureMirko Cabalero has done his third 8a onsight, Big Burly in Red River Gorge and the 12 year old is #2 in the junior combined ranking. " It feels good to be back on the rock after my broken finger.

I started climbing very early as my parents are climbers too. I love bouldering, but started to rope climb as well in 2011. I train in the Gym, but just to get strong. My passion is climbing outdoors, meeting new people and climbing with them.

8b+ OS and more by Sachi Amma  Facebook

Click to Enlarge PictureSachi Amma, who did Era Vella 9a last week, has continued showing great form onsighting Migrayana Profundo 8b+ in Siurana. The Lead World Cup winner 2012 has also done Coma Sent Pere 8c+ second go and some other impressive sends in Siurana. The picture by Eddie Gianelloni is from the 8b+ onsight.

8c+ onsight by Magnus Midtbö in Rodellar  (10) Facebook

Click to Enlarge PictureMagnus Midtbö finished a six week trip in Spain, where most of the time was spent projecting a wet 9b, by doing an epic onsight by Cosi van tutte, 8c+ in Rodellar. There are only four other guys who have onsighted at this level including Alexander Megos recent 9a.

The adventure to reach the crag included 200 m swimming in 10 degrees water against the stream. "After getting to the other side, I could only wait for the boat to come with my warm clothes, hoping that this was it, and that there would be no more swimming. Luckily there wasn’t, but on several occasions we had to walk up the river with water above our waists." Check out the amazing full story including more great pics by Henning Wang

In 2011, Magnus was #4 in the world championship and he is also #4 in the 8a ranking game.

To Bolt or Not to Be 8b+ by Drew Ruana (13)  (1) Facebook

Click to Enlarge PictureRudy Ruana reports through Facebook that his son Drew Ruana has done the classic To Bolt or Not to Be 8b+ in Smith Rocks. This was the fifth 8b+ by the 13 year old who did the first one year ago.

To Bolt is the first American 8b+ and it was put up by Jean-Baptiste Tribout in 1986 at the time when bolting was rather controversial. It is known to be very technical and mentally challenging being 37 m long, dead vertical and no rests.

"It was supposed to be a work session. Ian Yurdin encouraged him up...talking him up to the next "good" hold. Drew probably has 20 tries spread over a year total. Pretty grueling route for him. Its not his favorite style of climbing, " says the prod father and the pic was taken by mother Christine.

Dan Mirsky checks in with an 8c+ FA  (1) Facebook

Click to Enlarge PictureDan Mirsky has done the FA of Solid Gold 8c+ in Cathedral. "So pscyched about this route that I started an 8a account :) It is 'the line' for sure. In my opinion the straightest, most direct and most difficult way to climb Golden, It cuts out all the big rests and tackles the whole cave.

I am 30 years old and am currently living and traveling and climbing in the US with my girlfriend katy dannenberg in an airstream trailer. We spent this winter season down in Southern Utah living in the desert and climbing at the VRG and Cathedral. Before that I was living in CO. I have been climbing for 11 years. I have been a serious sport climber since 2006, I have lived near and spent lots of time climbing in Rifle and have travelled in the US fairly extensively."
Interview at DPM (c) Dave Pegg/Wolverinepublishing

Late blooming in climbing  Facebook

In most other physical sports, you reach your peak performance in between the age of 25 - 30. In rock climbing we do not yet know when you can expect to be in the best shape of your life but it seems to be not before you are 35 - 40. However, there are many 40+ who keep progressing and it just might be that if you continue to train as hard and intensive as being a youngster, some can continue to peak until they are 50 years.

Would it not be nice if Chris Sharma did his first 9c+ when he has turned 50 :)

Era Vella 9a by Sachi Amma  Facebook

Click to Enlarge PictureSachi Amma has done Era Vella 9a in Margalef on his sixth try. Last year, Sachi won the Leas World Cup. (c) Eddie Gianelloni

Supernova 9a 2:Go by Said Belhaj  (2) Facebook

Click to Enlarge PictureSaid Belhaj blogs about an unexpected 2:Go send of Supernova in Vadiello which was his fifth 9a.

"I had planned at least 3 weeks on the route so hopefully it would turn out ok in the end. As my shape felt so bad I instead worked the route VERY well, planning to attack once I felt a bit better.

This was for the me a new step in red-pointing, climbing so perfectly was definitely the key to success. No expectations another. I thought this route would take ages (when dogging the routes before the burn the crux had felt harder than ever) but sometimes unexpected things happen

Jungle Speed 9a by Geir Söderin  (2) Facebook

Click to Enlarge PictureGeir Söderin has after an 18 day long battle done his first 9a, Jungle Speed in Siurana. "You can say what you want about grades but sometimes they can be extremely important :) Check his blog in Swedish.

Geir's continuous progress is something that can motivate and inspire other guys who did not reach the "wonderkid" categorisation. In 2006, he did his first 8b being 20 years old and then he has progressed one grade every two years. Geir has been climbing since he was 3 years old and always been #1 for his age in Sweden.

What is your advice for continuous long term progress?
The most important thing is to continue to push you out of the comfort zone. This is of course something that is not easy follow and some more practical advice is to boulder more. For me the best training is through indoor bouldering. 18 months ago, I set my 9a goal. Last summer I tried some 9a's and this spring I have spent a month here trying different ones. Hopefully I can do one more as I plan to stay around in my car another month.

Hukkataival does Bügeleisen 8B+  (15) Facebook

Nalle Hukkataival reports on Facebook that he has done the third ascent of Klem Loskot's Bügeleisen 8B+ in Malatal from 2001. Video from the ascent by Dominik Preis.

"Just topped out Bügeleisen!!!! YESSSSSS!!! Probably the most epic battle I've ever had with any boulder! Conditions ranged from bad to utter shit and I got sick for several days.. So HAPPY I managed to pull it off at the very last moment!!!!!

8B by Samuel Ometz (17)  Facebook

Samuel Ometz has done his sixth 8B and harder the last month by General Dissaray 8B in Brione. "Hard. Powerful. So happy to do that one! some of the best moves". The 17 year old has quickly moved to #10 in the ranking game.

8b+ by Moritz Perwitzschky (13)  Facebook

Moritz Perwitzschky has done his first 8b+ Speed Baby in Margalef. During the last two weeks he has also done three 8b's. In 2013, he has also done his first 8A boulder traverse.

8a+ OS by Mikel Linacisoro (12) and Àlex Hernández (14)  Facebook

Another two Spaniard kids have reached the 8a+ onsight mark. Mikel Linacisoro has onsighted Las Clochas de Targa in Chulila and Àlex Hernández has onsighted Mon Dieu in Oliana as well as redpointed T1 Full Equip 8c. Both kids have had an extreme progress the last year and are part of the new big kids generation setting new standards ever year.

Kai Lightner (13) does Southern Smoke 8c+: UPDATE  (2) Facebook

Click to Enlarge PictureDPM reports that Kai Lightner has done Southern Smoke 8c+ in Red River Gorge. Over the past month, Kai and his mother have taken two trips to RRG and one to NRG and in total done three 8b+.

The grade progress for the kids has exploded during the last year and there are now at least a handful youngsters at the same level as Adam Ondra was, just turning teenager. The youngest person who has done an 8c+ is Ashima Shiraishi (11) also by Southern Smoke.

Profile video of the also very succesful 13 year old competition climber. (c) Elodie Sarocco who has published a nice gallery on her FB page.

8B+ FA by James Webb  Facebook

James Webb has had a very productive trip in Switzerland that finshed of in the best possible way by doing the FA of La Rustica 8B+ in Valle Bavona.

"One of the coolest projects i've ever climbed. Big thanks to Carlo for showing me this thing. Climbed it basically on my last day, last literal try. Couldn't ask for a better finish to my trip. Back to the USA tuesday.

Fabelita 8c by Muriel Sarkany (38)  Facebook

Click to Enlarge PictureMuriel Sarkany has done Fabelita 8c in Santa Linya and she did on her last try on her last day during a one week trip. The 38 year old has had a nice progress on the rock since she stopped competing in 2010.

In total she has won 17 World Cups. Five times she won Overall and in 2003 she was the World Champion. During her competition career she was for most of the time fully sponsored by the Belgian sport committee.

"Now I'm working as E9 representant for Benelux ;-) It's a nice job because it's great clothes. I don't know yet what I'm gone do exactly in the next months except trying new projects and have fun on rocks.

8c Fish Eye by Anak Verhoeven (16)  (39) Facebook

Click to Enlarge reports that Anak Verhoeven has done her first 8c, Fish Eye in Oliana. Anak started to climb when she was four and the last three years she won the Euro Youth Cup and last year she was #22 in the world champion.

A Muerte 9a (8c+) by Felix Neumärker  Facebook

Felix Neumärker who recently did La Rambla 9a+ in Siurana has done A Muerte for which he gives a personal grade of 8c+. He did the same thing for Chocolate Caliente suggesting 8c. During the last two seven weeks, Felix has done seven 8c+ to 9a+ in Siurana.

9a and 8c+ FA by Ramonet  Facebook

Ramón Julian Puigblanque has put up La Parada de los Monstruos 9a in Montanejos and El noi de Manlleu 8c+ in Montserrat. During the last three years Ramonet has been the #1 climber in the world performing on both rock and in competitions.

8A+ flash by Domen Škofic (18)  (14) Facebook

Click to Enlarge PictureDomen Škofic has flashed Ganymede Takeover 8A+ in Cresciano and fell on the last move on The Dagger 8B (+), before he did it on his third try. "I would belief that The Dagger is 8A+ if somebody would say that." The 18 year old also did Confessions 8B (+) in ten tries over 45 minutes.

Last year, Domen won all five Euro Youth Cups and made it to the finals once in the WC. In 2013, he plans to do all the WC's and also the bouldering in Log Dragomer. In the 8a Combined Juior Game, he is a superior #1.

9a again by Mateusz Haladaj  (1) Facebook

Click to Enlarge PictureMateusz Haladaj has done his seventh 9a, Direct Open your mind in Santa Linya and he goes to #6 in the ranking game. (c) Maciek Lesser Gajewski

"Finally done, SO HAPPY!!! The hardest route of mine, personal grade 9a/+. Not my style. So good, has every type of movement, simply great sort of climbing. Took me more than one year, over 200 tries, had an accident on it… Big thing. Thanks for all the friends for support and never ending belay

8C FA "The Kingdom" gets Traversi to #1 in the game  (9) Facebook

Click to Enlarge PictureCarlo Traversi has done his fifth 8C during the last six months by setting up The Kingdom in Brione.

"The long standing Vecchio left project. Many days of work. Hardest 5 moves I've ever linked together and it's perfectly my style. Shouldery moves, high feet, and very tense climbing. Last day in Swiss and couldn't be more psyched to finally piece this one together.

It was all caught on video for the new film that I have been working on called "Heritage" which documents my experiences and climbs in Swiss over the last 6 months. Should be available in the next few months.

8c by Johanna Ernst  Facebook

Johanna Ernst, the World Cup winner 2008 (being 16) and in 2009 she won the WC again and also become the world champion, has done Fish Eye 8c in Oliana on her 3 Go. Last year she did her first 8c+ and she was #3 in the WC.

Megos does La Rambla 9a+ and A Muerte 9a both 2nd Go  (17) Facebook

Click to Enlarge Picture19 year old Alexander is about to take climbing into a new era and yesterday he did La Rambla 9a+ in Siurana on his second go. Dani Fuertes reports that apparently he fell just two moves before the easier finish on his flash attempt, getting beta from Felix Neumärker. Alexander also did A Muerte 9a, 2nd go.

It should be noted that this was the first 9a+ 2nd go, and three days ago he did the first 9a onsight ever.

8c+ by Piotr Schab (16)  Facebook

Piotr Schab has done Coma Sant Pere 8c+ in Margalef. The 16 year old is #8 in the ranking game and he has previously done three 8c+ and Era Vella 9a.

8B flash by Niccolò Ceria (19)  (1) Facebook

Click to Enlarge PictureNiccolò Ceria has had a good start on his trip to Västervik where he in almost freezing conditions flashed The Hourglas SDS 8B. "Nice moment! Used the logical sit start with undercling and the lower sidepull for the left. In this way, everyone can start from the sit, although it adds a move to the original one. really cool line, I'm not sure about the grade, it could be an hard 8A+ or lower-end 8B. hard to say on the flash attempt."

Nico also did do two 8A's out of which one he says was "basically a flash" as it shares an easy top out of a 7A he had done earlier. It should be noted that all grades given by Nico is one or two grades lower than the original ones.

8B+ during the night by Chris Webb Parsons  Facebook

Click to Enlarge PictureChris Webb Parsons has done Dandelion Mind 8B+ in Peak District and it was a mini adventure. "Amazing night session.
We headed off on an adventure, walked through 1 meter deep snow with head torches and abseiled into the crag to find it dry ;) 3 sessions off effort and I managed to climb this amazing problem at 11pm. Unbelievable good climbing, one of the best. Off to work on an oil rig for 1 month now so good timing."
(c) Panda Fenemore

Hörst kids progress  Facebook

Click to Enlarge PictureEric Hörst, auther of eight climbing training books with a sales over 300 000 and father of two sons 10 & 12 who both have done a 8b (+) gives us some insight and we are preparing a full interview.

"There’s emerging research that there’s a “skill window” between the age of 8 and 12 during which kids can best develop motor skills, wire the brain, and—perhaps most important—influence genetic traits, such as muscle fiber type, enzyme and hormone production for speed and strength, etc. Doing the right things during this brief window, in terms of training and experience, appears to be a huge factor in shaping the future adult athlete. (Once the window closes you can never catch up.)

8c onsight by Adam Ondra  (5) Facebook

Adam Ondra has been on a rainy trip to Andalucia where he could only climb one day out of two weeks on his new ultimate project. Instead he made the FA of Tres Satelites 8c+ and onsighted Into the Wild 8c in Jaen. On his way back, he found his new 9b project in Catalunya also wet.

8b+ onsight by Geir Söderin  (61) Facebook

Geir Söderin has onsighted Los Humildes pa Casa 8b+ in Oliana and it was just after he redpointed T1 Full Equip. On his swedish blog he writes that he one month earlier onsighted half of the 48 m which is an 7c. The 8a ethic recommendations suggest that it is an onsight when the shared part is one full grade lower and it is a yellow card if the shared part would have been 8a.

The Story Of 2 Worlds 8C by Carlo Traversi  (16) Facebook

Click to Enlarge PictureCarlo Traversi has ended a three year battle by doing Dave Graham's classic The Story Of 2 Worlds 8C in Cresciano. "My hardest ascent so far and the most I've battled for a send. Mostly a mental battle because today the send felt easy. Such is life. Very excited to move forward now. Projects await."

Dave put it up in 2005 and named it as a statement towards the Swizz grade inflation that actually was stopped due to the 8C proposed grade. It is a sitstart to The Dagger, the most repeated 8B+ which have been subject of being down graded.

The sitstart has created some confusion and the two first repetitors; Robinson and Koyamada, started in different positions compared to the FA. Koyamada later added both a laying start as well as a + to the boulder.

Carlo has created a fourth start by doing a proper sit start to where Paul started crouched, they both added two more hard moves from the left compared to where Graham started. This is where he thought the boulder started three years ago and he wanted to finish this. Regarding the grade he thinks this is the hardest start but it does not effect the grade more than going from Soft to Hard.


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