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Rowan Toselli - Pursuit of Happiness 8B in Cape Town  Facebook

Via Ferrata in Norway  (2) Facebook

Matyas Luzan popped his finger on first try on AD  Facebook

Click to Enlarge PictureMatyas Luzan, who has spent the last two years training on replicas of Action Directe, did injure himself on the very first hard move he tried on the site in Frankenjura.

"I popped my right annular finger in the palm and also in the forearm. Like it snapped while warming up. Imagine how stressed the muscles were. I think I was overtrained and too little rest. I also think because in the gym there are 30 degrees and I climbed in 10 now, and I was dehydrated. overtraining/too little rest

Support Panama Climbing  Facebook

Rocklands -30 minutes :)  Facebook

Firnenburg brothers video portrait  Facebook

The Firnenburg Brothers climbing "The Essential" from Kings&Kongs on Vimeo.

The Unknown Spain - Santa Gadea, Resconorio & Covaleda (in association with  Facebook

Kai Lightner and Era Vella 9a  Facebook

Thieves in Ceüse  Facebook

Even if leaving gear at the crag is at times not advised and in many cases officially not allowed, it is common practice to do so in many areas. Over the past days, ropes and gear packages have been stolen in Ceüse. This not only does damage to the community of climbers but of course deals a blow to those who have to buy new gear. Some folks lost gear amounting to 1500 euros and even if one might question if leaving all your gear at the crag instead of carrying it up and down every day is okay, one thing´s for sure - stealing is not!
So if in Ceüse right now, choose wisely if you want to stash your gear or not - you might get ripped off!

Brooke Raboutou sets new female Zlagboard record  Facebook

Click to Enlarge PictureDuring the Youth World Champions, several hundred juniors tested their finger strength and the winner were the Harold Peeters and Brooke Raboutou who actually got the best female result ever.

What is very interesting is that the Zlagboard actually seems to be a good measurement to see who has the strongest fingers among lighter climbers. Most of the highest ranked are in between 45 - 60 kg.

Upgrade Speed from vertical 6a's to steep 7a's  Facebook

The interest in speed climbing of the media and the climbers is extremely low. Sure, IFSC makes some participate in order to win prize money or to get an overall ranking but why not upgrade Speed events from vertical 6a's to steep 7a's?

The Duel speed climbing in Arco is a great success every year but as you need to clip every second meter and the difficulty is 7c, it is in fact rather slow.

Imagine how much more fun it would be to see the Adam Ondra to go footless on steep sections for about ten moves on a 7a route? Such a format could also help us to get into the Olympics and it would also be interesting to train for it in order to climb better in Lead comps.

Such a 7a steep speed climbing would be carried out on about 12 meter high walls, where you need to unclip maybe two carabiners. What do you think?

Nina Caprez talks about 8c MP  Facebook

James Webb does Livin' Large 8C in Rocklands  (2) Facebook

Gimp Monkeys  Facebook

Prayers in the wind by EPICTV  Facebook

Mina Leslie-Wujastyk EPICTV portrait  Facebook

Quotes of the day :) - James Noble  Facebook

James Noble is having his best bouldering days ever in Rocklands and we could all learn from his classical comments.

Golden Shadow 8B+: "Total mental war of attrition! Marc le menestral saw me on it and described my climbing as 'dancing on rock'. A little bit pleased."
Armed Response 8B: "On the go I did it I pushed that hard I went deaf in one ear for the next few minutes. Poo also nearly came out."

Second 8b by Nika Potapowa (12)  Facebook

Click to Enlarge PictureNika Potapowa was too young to compete in the Arco Youth World Championship but she went there anyway, and like last year, she did an 8b, Fuego. The tallented 12-year-old did also onsight her first 7c+, Herrtuna in Nassereith.

Ondra and Janicot win the #29 Arco Rock Master  Facebook

Click to Enlarge PicturePlanet Mountain reports that Adam Ondra and Hélène Janicot won the Duel competition at the 29th Arco Rock Master. The runner-ups were Sean McColl and Mathilde Becerra.

8 + 8 of the best Lead climbers in the world were invited to see who is the fatest in a Duel starting with a speed qualification. Later on, they competed in quarter final, semi and finals and it was also a great ending of the Youth World Championship. (c) Giulio Malfer

Every year in Arco, the Duel is just a success and possibly it could be something that also IFSC could introduce. Surely, it is much funnier to see the best guys in the world speed climbing an 8a for a minute instead of watching some speed climbers climbing for around ten seconds on a 6b? Or maybe, both formats could be used.

Girls interested in Overall in Arco  Facebook

Click to Enlarge PictureBy looking on the complete overall ranking, we can see that several of the best girls did compete in all three disciplines. However, the only ones who made it into all finals Top-8's were Grace McKeehan (c) Eddie Fowke, who won the Overall title in Girls A and Elena Krasovskaia, who won in Girls B.

Among the boys, none of the best climbers participated in all parts and in juniors, the winner, Mattias Erber, was #12, #18 and #35 in the three disciplines. In reality, if the best Lead and Boulder guys would just have climbed slowly in the Speed, the male podium would have been completely changed.

Youth World Champions  (3) Facebook

96: Anak Verhoeven BEL - Bernhard Röck AUT
98: Janja Garnbret SLO - Sascha Lehmann SUI
00: Ashima Shiraishi USA - Sam Avezou FRA
Complete results

Both Ashima Shiraishi and Janja Garnbret did top out all four routes. Six countries did get one gold in Lead and USA with two silver was overall #1 ahead of Belgium and Slovenia with one silver. The big negative disappointment once again was Germany who did not get any youngsters in the final in both Lead and Boulder.

Overall the Youth World Championship was a great success for IFSC and the organizer including the route setting team. It looks like a great future for competition climbing with the record of participants and this event will increase our possibilities to reach the Olympics.

Lead Finals in Arco start 12.00  Facebook

Megos, Ondra and Ellison Arco Rock Legends  (1) Facebook

Click to Enlarge PicturePlanet Mountain reports from the Arco Rock Legends ceremony, where Alex Megos won the Salewa Rock Award and Adam Ondra won the La Sportiva Competition Award. Ondra won his first Award when he was 15 years old and in total, he has five Awards now. No other climber has won more than once.

John Ellison received the title of Dryarn Climbing Ambassador by Aquafil Award for his work with Climbers Against Cancer, which has raised some 500 000 Euros beside having sold and distributed 25 000 T-shirts. (c) Giulio Malfer

Russia dominated Speed in Arco  Facebook

Although Russia dominated the Speed event in the Youth World Championships in Arco, also USA, Iran, France and Poland got at least one silver. John Brosler from USA had the best time overall: 6.33.

96: Georgy Artamanov RUS - Patrycja CHUDZIAK POL
98: Kostiantyn PAVLENKO RUS - Elma FLEURET FRA

Squamish bouldering  Facebook

The Dark Forest: Squamish Bouldering from Mathieu Elie on Vimeo.

Andy Gullsten flashing 8B in Rocklands  Facebook

Andy flashing 'King of Limbs' from Anthony Gullsten on Vimeo.

8a+ DWS flash by Magnus Midtbø  (2) Facebook

Click to Enlarge PictureMagnus Midtbø, #4 in the Lead World Champion 2011, reports on Facebook with a great picture from a 8a+ DWS flash,

"Setting up for the huge dyno on Loskot and Two Smoking Barreels!! So happy to have pulled off what might be my most committing flash ever. Photo: @janvincentkleine

Nina Williams in Bishop  Facebook

Great spirit and great job by the Lead organizers in Arco  Facebook

Click to Enlarge PictureIn total, close 500 youngsters participated in the two days Lead flash qualifications and everyone reports that the spirit was high with excellent route setting and few minor incidents. The team coach from Sweden, Reino Horak says,

- You should report that the jury president Tim Hatch has done a very good job and he is working non stop fixing some small technical incidents. Several coaches have said that he has been a key player and it is just amazing how smooth everything goes. (c) Eddie Fowke

Troll Wall - Norway FA in 1980  Facebook

Training for 9a and working full time - Mar Alvarez #2  (16) Facebook

Proudest ascent for Sasha Digiulian  Facebook

Female Juniors + Boys B Category in Arco  Facebook

Male Juniors + Male A Finals in Arco  Facebook

Great start of the Youth World Championship in Arco  Facebook

No country dominated the Boulder Youth World Championship but Japan did get one gold and three silvers. Interesting is that Austria that has been the best competition country for many years for both the seniors and the juniors got just one silver and in total three finalists.

Overall, the first Boulder World Championship was a great success for both IFSC and the local organization with great thrilling events, especially in the semifinal as well as the final. With several hundreds starts doing up to 12 boulders each the number of technical incidents and yellow cards etc. was in fact lower than in the Boulder World Cups.

The simplest thing to improve the competition would be to add at least one more zone hold, which would make the route setters job easier. This would also mean that not 100+ youngsters have to go back home telling their friends that they were tied dead last with no score at all.

Another option could be to skip the isolation in order to avoid that some had to wait there for more than 8 hours and then not score even a zone.

8C FA by Christof Rauch  Facebook

Click to Enlarge PictureChristof Rauch, who has done 100+ 8A's the last year has done his hardest yet, the FA of Nussknacker Sit which he recorded as an 8C.

- Such a proud line! After more than 1h of building up a new landing yesterday and falling down on the last hard move last session, I am really happy to get this first ascent!!! Shares the first few moves of "Black Beauty" and climbs through a little transitionpart directly (without the first move) into the "Nussknacker". So it's about 8A into 8B(?).

I would suggest 8B+/C. Maybe it's just a solid 8B+ but definitely the hardest thing I have climbed so far. There is just a little elimination (for me it's logical), without the holds in the slab, otherwise you could climb into the slab and shake out. Took me 7 sessions to put it together. I hope to see some repeats! ;-)

Ogata and Chon Youth World Champions  Facebook

Jongwon Chon, the winner of Boulder WC 2015, did also take the gold in the Boulder Youth Championship by doing the four problems in just six goes. Also Nicolas Pelorson neded just six goes but had one more attempt on the bonuses. The big sensation was that Nathaniel Coleman, who was #2 in the first two Boulder WCs this year, ended as #5.

In the Youth male A it was equally tight in between two Japaneses and Yoshiyuki Ogata won just ahead of Kai Harada. All 12 finalists managed to do at least two boulders. Complete results

Stasa Gejo and Filip Schenk World Champions  Facebook

Click to Enlarge PictureFilip Schenk, who did two 8b routes in Arco some weeks ago and has no boulders recorded, won the youth B category in a superior style. First, he won both the qualification and the semi and in the final he got three tops meanwhile the rest of the finalists just managed one, all together.

Stasa Gejo, who did her first 8b when she was 13 years old, and who was #5 in the last Boulder WC, won in a thrilling show. Her opponent, Miho Nonaka, #3 in the Boulder WC 2015, spent all four minutes on just one problem. Results (c) Peter Thulstrup

Bouldering in Västervik - Sweden  Facebook

Sasha DiGulian does FFA of Magic Mushroom at the Eiger North Face  (42) Facebook

Click to Enlarge PictureSasha Digulianreports on Facebook that she has, together with Carlo Traversi, done the Magic Mushroom of Eiger North Face that finishes up at 3 219 meters after 21 pitches up to 7c+. (c) Carlo Denali

"I've never tried harder on anything in my life. I am wrecked and can't believe it's real. 4 days 3 nights and the dream is complete! We did it!"

DiGiulian and Traversi had spent three weeks projecting Paciencia (23 pitches, 8a) also on the Eiger North Face. However, continuous poor weather made them switch route and after just a quick rappel check-up of the Magic Mushroom on the 27th, they succeeded at their first attempt. Sasha had previously told 8a that she had to go back to school in the end of August so it was just one of these "final day, final go".

For several years, Sasha has been one of the best female climbers in all disciplines, including competition climbing, where she was #2 respectively #8 in the Boulder and Lead World Championships in Arco 2009, being 18 years old.

Shiraishi and Garnbret take first golds in Arco  (2) Facebook

Click to Enlarge PictureThe big favorites; Ashima Shiraishi from USA and Janja Garnbret from Slovenia got the first golds in the Youth World Championship in Arco. Both had also previously won the qualifications and the semifinals. In the semifinals, the route setting was perfect and it was a great show in the live streaming. Results (c) Giulio Malfer

Ashima has done several 9a's and also an 8B+, and in fact, the 14 year old, has had the most impressive female tick list in the world, during the last two years.

Janja Garnbret has won all the Youth comps she has entered and in the only two Lead World Cup she has done, the 16 year old was the runner up :)

Bouldering in Canberra and Sydney  Facebook

Bouldering in Canberra and Sydney 2015. Some FA and a repeat. from Neil Wallace on Vimeo.

Female Youth A & B - Bouldering  Facebook

Climbing: Lifestyle or Sport  Facebook

Climbing Technology presents an interesting article - THE EVOLUTION OF CLIMBING FROM BEING A LIFESTYLE TO BEING A GENUINE SPORT.

Having been on the scene for 20 years I would say I agree with the article in general but luckily, the best climbers in the world; Ondra, Sharma and Megos, will always say Lifestyle is more important.

In the short run, it might be better for the most to go for the genuine sport attitude in order to perform but in the long run, this attitude will stop the progress.

The greatest advantage for the lifestyle guys is that they do not build that much anxiety as the guys who are in it for the results. Hanging on an onsight for several minutes, on rock or in a competition, is very frustrating knowing that it just takes one mistake to be out. At the same time, you have to take risks when climbing at your best.

And as a matter of a fact, all the true lifestyle climbers, who were also addicted competition climbers, sooner or later want to enjoy all the great climbing disciplines like multi pitch, trad climbing, etc. or just hiking to get to the top.

One of the successful gym owners in Sweden said, regarding their competition for outdoors.

- We encourage our customers to get outside because if so, they will get hooked for ever and always want to train in our gym. If they never try or get the feeling for outdoors they will probably quit training in our gym after some years.

Almost perfect level in semi but mobiles in Iso  Facebook

The semifinal boulder problems were great with almost the perfect difficulty level.

The strangest thing, though, was that several youngsters brought their mobiles and were looking at them often without anybody saying anything. They could in fact have been watching the live streaming. Remember that Jakob Schubert was disqualified for checking the time once in a Lead World Cup some years ago.

New 9a first ascent for Seb Bouin  (1) Facebook

Click to Enlarge PictureKairn reports Seb Bouin has done the first ascent of "A muerte bilou" 9a in Ramirole cave, Verdon Gorge, France. The route, around 50 meters, is very steep : 60° overhang, with a boulder problem at the beginning followed by a knee-bar rest then a 30 meters resistance 8c. It takes him around 3 weeks of effort. A week ago he was close to send "Thors hammer" 9a+ in Flatanger before leaving but no cigar. Seb is by far the most active French climber in the rock climbing business.
Photo : Pierre Délas

Too hard boulders also for boys in Arco  Facebook

You would think that the route setters should have learnt their lesson after about one third in two the youngest girl categories in Arco did not even score one zone.

Out of 93 boys in A, only six managed to do more than one Top and just 32 did manage one Top. The number of boys without any score, sharing the last position, was 34.

In the end, qualifications like this turn too much into random comps and, in fact, Kai Lighter, World Youth Lead Champion did not make it to the semi, being #26. In the Junior category, World Cup winner Chongwon Chon was #6 and one competitor who has done many 8A's did not even do one zone.

The problem is that IFSC does not give instructions on what kind of difficulty level they want. The easiest solution for the zero scoring is of course just to have more zones. Imagine being 14-year-old, training hard for several months and then travel from the other side of the planet and score zero, after sitting up to 9 hours in the isolation.

IFSC must come up with a solution for this and make sure that the Lead routes are easy enough, so that everyone will be able to climb some moves and clip at least one clip.

Living The Dirt Bag Life In Joe's Valley.  Facebook

Bad start of the Youth Worlds in Arco  Facebook

Out of 65 competitors in the youngest female category, 26 girls (13 and 14 years old) did not even get one zone. They all ended dead last on a tied #38. Ashima Shiraishi was the only one to top out all qualification boulders, and in fact only nine made more than one.

In the female youth A it was almost as bad, so it was a really bad start for the vibe at the Youth World's in Arco. The route setters need to make one boulder or even zone much easier in order not to destroy the youngsters' self confidence.

On the other hand, the results just show that the scoring system is not so nice and it would be much better for everyone if there were possibly two or three zones, which 8a has suggested before.

Imagine also that some of the 14-year-old girls who did not score even one zone had been wating up to 8 hours in the isolation.

8c+ by Loic Zehani (14)  Facebook

Click to Enlarge PictureLoic Zehani, who previously did three 8c's, has done the first repeat of his father's route, Crépuscule in Orgon, giving it a personal grade of 8c+.

Cristophe gives us some further info. "The route begins with a boulder section (about 7C): CUPRESSUS BLUES" 8b+, very hard for the fingers with small pockets and without feet) which is linked to the hardest part of L'ARLESIENNE 8b+, without any rest. It is a good stamina test piece with 42 movements and it took hime some 40 tries."

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.

2nd 8B by Pol Roca Lopez (17)  Facebook

Pol Roca Lopez has done La Théorie du Chaos 8B in Targassonne and here is the Video. Pol is #3 in the junior ranking game.

Two 8c by Sasha Digulian  Facebook

Click to Enlarge PictureSasha Digiulian has done two 8c in Oliana, Fish Eye and Los Humildes pa Casa. "Retro Flash" - first try of the trip but I put draws up on it before! Simply magical, one of the best routes I've ever climbed. Thanks for the belay Arjan!

Sasha started to climb when she was 7 and she has making head lines since she was 14, doing an 8A boulder. Since 2011, she has been the best female rock climber and her highest 8a ranking among the male has been #6.

In 2011, she was the Overall World Champion after being #2 in Boulder and #8 in Lead.

8C (+) by Toru Nakajima  Facebook

Click to Enlarge PictureToru Nakajima reports through Facebook, "I made second ascent Asagimadara 8C (+) Mt Mizugaki!! This problem had made first ascent by Tokio Muroi two years ago.

He took more 100 days to climb this problem and he graded it "6 DAN". 6DAN may means 8C+, but I think it is 8C. After all, I think it is the best problem I did, and I am very happy to climb such a problem.

First 9a by Nick Duttle  (1) Facebook

Nick Duttle has done I, Me, MINE in Texas for his first 9a after having done six 8c+.

"First of all I would like to say thank you to the Austin climbing community and people who make this a special place! I feel greatful and lucky to climb round here! The bouldery, technical, and powerful nature of the limestone is a real treasure that has much to teach and a bit more to give. I have to give honest humbled respect to Rupesh for completing this climb.

8C FA by Paul Robinson again  Facebook

Click to Enlarge PicturePaul Robinson has done his eleventh 8C by the FA of The New Chapter in Arkansas. "The low start to child's play (8B). One of the sickest roof climbs I have done!! climbs a really hard powerful boulder problem into the stand start and makes the stand soo much harder! ahh such a sick roof!! so psyched!" (c) Fernando Jiminez

Paul's first 8C FA, Lucid Dreaming in Bishop from 2010 is probably the hardest one and have been subject of being upgraded. In total Paul has done 163 boulders 8B and harder.

La Rambla 9a+ by Felix Neumärker  (12) Facebook

Click to Enlarge PictureFelix Neumärker has done the classic La Rambla 9a+ in Siurana. "Happy-go-lucky... Thanks a lot to Gerard Rull for telling Patxi's method... Thanks to André and Alizée for the support!!" (c)

Alexander Huber put up the "Original" as an 8c+ in 1994. The first repeat, including an extension, was done in 2003 by Ramon Julian Puigblanque giving it 9a+. Several repeaters have said that the extension includes an elimination which they have escaped.

8c and more by Matilda Söderlund  (1) Facebook

Click to Enlarge PictureMatilda Söderlund has done Fish Eye 8c in Oliana on her third go. Four days ago she did Dogma 8b+ in Siurana where she actually onsighted the last 20 meters after a 7c+ start she had done once before. Another three days earlier, she flashed, as a warming up, La Boqueria 8a+.

Last year, the 20 year old swede, was #6 in the world championship.

Dreamtime 8C by Fabian Buhl  (3) Facebook

Click to Enlarge PictureFabian Buhl has done Fred Nicole's Dreamtime which after a broken hold seems to be back to 8C. It took him 15 days of effort to do it. Previously, Fabian has done seven 8B+'s. check his blog for more info and pics
(c) Stefan Kürzi

9a by Magnus Midtbø again  Facebook

Click to Enlarge PictureMagnus Midtbø has done Ciudad de dios 9a in Santa Linya. Due to heavy rain some 10 days a go he has left his 9b project and tried easier routes. I have found out that the key when it comes to wet holds is not to hesitate and not chalking up, as it only makes the rock more slippery."

The picture is from the day after the rain when they had do cross a flooded river in Margalef where he onsighted Terrence Hill 8b+ with a wet crux. More info and pics by Henning Wang at his blog.

Any progress report on Neanderthal 9b?
The tufa is still wet but I have had a lot of progression the last few days. If it just dries up I think I can do (send) it pretty fast. I have already felt seven times on the dyno crux. I am in great shape and decided to try Ciudad yesterday just for training and it felt very easy.

Felix Neumärker signs up with a 9a  Facebook

Felix Neumärker has done his first 9a, Estado Critico in Siurana where he also during the last month has done three 8c+ and a flash of Renegoide 8b+. Here is his blog and here is a video from he he dis La Reina Mora 8c+.

8B+ again by Niccolò Ceria (19)  Facebook

Click to Enlarge PictureNiccolò Ceria has done his fourth 8B+, Gandalf il Grigio in Varazze which took him three days to do.

"I have worked it 10 mins to do the upper part (8A), then three days to do the whole line. during the first day I figured out a really hard beta which I wasn't able to link up all together. I changed my method during the second day and in the third session I was rested enough to climb it."

Blog with training tips and pictures and here is an Interview from 2013


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