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The complete grade evolution
  2012-12-24 00:00:00    
Planetmountain presents through Claude Remy, the most detailed Tick List on the grade progress during the last 100 years in several categories of bouldering and route climbing. It should be noted that the boulder grades presented for some reason have not taken into account that most are today considered down graded. As an example, credits are given for several 8C+', without mentioning Adam Ondra, at the same time as the community struggles to understand if the first 8C+ have been done.

"Climbing grades are not an exact science; in addition some achievements haven't yet been confirmed and the difficulty of more than one of these routes has changed over the years due to broken (or modified) holds. This list, which adheres to the French grading scale, is therefore an initial proposal which needs integrating with bouldering traverses trad routes, and hybrid climbs (which begin with a boulder and continue with a rope)."
OffLine Robin Mueller
  2012-12-24 12:15:15    

Interesting that Font kept pace with grade progress for so long. A few years ago I compiled a very similar bouldering list for the ukbouldering website. There are also photo and video links to most problems:

http://ukbouldering.com/wiki/index.php/World_Bouldering_First_At_Each_Grade

OffLine Sascha Gierlings
  2012-12-24 16:47:58    
@Petr: Hmm, I think Gioia could well be 8C+. It has seen two ascents, the first by Christian Core, who probposed 8C and the second ascent by Adam Ondra who was in the opinion that Gioia should be 8C+. If I remember right, Core admitted after Ondra's ascent that he thought about grading it 8C+ but wasn't sure and wanted to wait for a repeat. If that is right, the consensus grade is more on the 8C+ side then.

And regarding the traverse grades... how do you compare traverse and bloc grades? I know that there're some peculiar conversion tables out there in the internet - but is a traverse harder or easier than a "normal" boulder problem and at which point do you start taking the trav. rather than bloc grade. I could well imagine that most boulderers would give a grade according to what it feels and go for the bloc grade, to which they're used to. Similar problems occur with higher/longer boulders and short routes. Is it the rope that makes a route out of a boulder or is there a certain number of moves that make the difference... ;-)

Cheers and merry Xmas,

Sascha
OnLine Franz the Stampede
  2012-12-24 18:15:06    

Good starting point, my "constructive objections" would be:

1 - Net everything with the most recent downgradings
2 - Eliminate anything that has a controverse story, is unrepeated and un-worked on
3 - At the most, first 3 ascents of that grade, we don't need all those 9bs reported
4 - If Delincuente Natural can be considered a route, so should Ali Hulk which Dani climbed before DN and I believe was proposed (and later confirmed) as 9b, making it the first climbed and confirmed 9b at the time of writing
5 - Split the whole thing in OS, flash and RP (at least for routes)
6 - Is Cha Durif's OS 8c the one shot in A Girl Thing? If yes, she did it with one hang, calimed OS in good faith IMO (not that it really matters) but shouldn't be considered
7 - Im Reich Des Shogun 9a+?

This said, after having seen a few of these classifications I think it MIGHT make much more sense to see who was the first to climb a certain grade consistently.
For which, I'd dare propose Alex Huber as the first consistent 9a climber, Sharma as the first 9a+ and 9b climber.

OffLine Dylan Colon
  2012-12-24 19:49:13    
If Pete Cleveland's "Phlogiston" is counted as the first 8a, which is doubtable, since it has been downgraded to 7c by the main guidebook (I haven't tried it and can't personally comment), than his 1969 route right next to it, "Bagatelle," a well confirmed 7c, should be included as perhaps the first 7c.  I think the first 8a was still probably Grand Illusion.

The caveat is that these were both top-rope ascents, but they did occur in an area with a strict no-bolt ethic, and there is no protection for a reasonably safe trad ascent (it has been done, but leading it is basically a free solo).
If we will insist that top-ropes must not count, than both Phlogiston and Bagatelle should not e on this list and the first 7c is probably Supercrack.  I would argue that an exception can and should be made because the ethic at the area basically demanded that it be top-roped.

I will also admit being biased, because I have done Bagatelle and it is amazing.  
OnLine Jens Larssen
  2012-12-24 23:28:27    
@ Petr: Today, it does not any 8C+ boulder which have been confirmed or not been questioned. The possible first contendor is the upgraded Gioia or The Story of Two Worlds Low.

I think the auther has done a mistake giving credit to several guys having done 8C+. However, as he did it is strange that not Ondra was mentioned as he did Gioia. 

In such a list I do think boulders should be separated from traverses but as it seems he did not, Ondra could also been credited for an 8C+ traverse.
OnLine Jens Larssen
  2012-12-25 14:32:02    
It seems you miss the last sentance which is just dead wrong,

"These are followed by other 8C+ basically all by Fred Nicole, Dai Koyamada, Christian Core, Paul Robinson, Daniel Woods, Chris Sharma, Dave Graham...."
 
Most of these guys have never claimed to have done 8C+ ... but for some reason he has missed that Adam Ondra has claimed to have done an 8C+ boulder.

I also think that such a nice list produced by Claude suggest that we need an ethical world standard. I am talking about onsight and down climbing ethics etc.

OffLine Markku Laine
  2012-12-26 10:50:58    
@Jens I would not say Claude Remy is disseminating false information here. Most of the listed climbers have actually proposed 8C+ at some point of their career. See the list below (For your convenience, I have tried to pick references that point to old 8a.nu news articles.):

Fred Nicole: Terremer, http://www.8a.nu/?IncPage=http%3A//www.8a.nu/news/AllNews.aspx%3FCountryCode%3DITA%26NewsId%3D3919

Dai Koyamada: Hydrangea, http://www.8a.nu/?IncPage=http%3A//web.8a.nu/news/AllNews.aspx%3FCountryCode%3DGLOBAL%26StartIndex%3D502 (search for "Hydrangea")

Christian Core: Gioia, http://www.8a.nu/?IncPage=http%3A//www.8a.nu/news/AllNews.aspx%3FCountryCode%3DARG%26Year%3D0%26StartIndex%3D750 (Search for "Gioia") and http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SBivfjAU_fA

Paul Robinson: Lucid Dreaming, http://www.8a.nu/?IncPage=http%3A//www.8a.nu/news/AllNews.aspx%3FCountryCode%3DCHE%26NewsId%3D14470

Daniel Woods: The Game, http://www.8a.nu/forum/ViewForumThread.aspx?ObjectId=13866&ObjectClass=CLS_UserNewsComment&CountryCode=GBR

Chris Sharma: The Never Ending Story, http://nalle-hukkataival.blogspot.fi/2010/03/bouldering-grades-everything-is-average.html

Dave Graham: The Story of Two Worlds, http://www.8a.nu/forum/ViewForumThread.aspx?ObjectId=18176&ObjectClass=CLS_UserNewsComment&CountryCode=GLOBAL (Dave Graham proposed 8C but 8a.nu has reported the problem as 8C(+) in this news article)
OnLine Jens Larssen
  2012-12-26 21:47:37    

There are more than a 10 boulders that have originally been given 8C+ by the FA but all have actually been down graded. It is strange that just some of them where mentioned here and as they have been down graded I do not understand why he still kept them as 8C+. As a matter of a fact, actually most of the boulders listed have been down graded.

Of course, down grading is not objective but as one listed boulder are reported to have had a new grade it is strange that no other boulders were mentioned in the same category. I am also aware that grades are not objective and that some could argue for a couple of 8C+ out there...but to say that there are several is simply wrong.

It is also strange that he mixed boulders with traverses without saying that they are not using the same grading scale.

I like the list but I think that when it comes to the boulders 8B and harder it is mainly wrong. I can also say that, 8a tried to do a similar list through BP some years ago and also this list turned ou to be mainy wrong.

OffLine Robin Mueller
  2012-12-27 16:33:03    
Have a look at the list I posted higher up. It doesn't include traverses and also lists problems by current grades. I revise it whenever new info comes to light, so it should be pretty accurate.

It remains to be seen if all the 8C's will retain their grade, but 2002 was an incredible year!
OnLine Jens Larssen
  2012-12-27 22:59:54    
Thanks Robin, I think your list is more accurate. How many 8C's do you think exist now? I would guess at least 30 which is kind of interesting as there is no 8C+. I guess some of the 8C should be either up- or down graded :)
OffLine Robin Mueller
  2012-12-28 01:39:24    
The Udini site is a good source to check number of hard problems -
http://www.udini.de/index.php/climboid/hardestmoves

There are some missing, but you can get a fair idea.