Solveig Korherr has done her ninth 8c the last year, Odd Fellows in Frankenjura. In the 8a ranking game, the 22-year-old is #2.
"Yippie! Two days this trip + a couple of tries from last year in spring. Fingers felt good on these tiny Frankenjura crimps! After getting heartbreakingly close on my second try already, I kept falling lower and lower. I’m glad I managed to keep calm and to clip the anchor today! :) Thanks Jon for belaying and sorry for the wobblers :D.
I will spend the next two weeks in Frankenjura, but without any specific goals. I‘m psyched to climb a lot and check out some new cliffs as there are so many options to choose from.”
Philipp Gaßner has done Action Directe in Frankenjura which was put up by Wolfgang Gullich in 1990 and generally considered to be the first 9a in the world. In total, it has been repeated 27 times and interestingly, during the last 2.5 years, it had only been done twice, including Melissa Le Neve doing the first female ascent last year. (c) Basti Scheibel
"Psyched to have finally climbed that one. I’ve wanted to do it for a long time but somehow I’ve only spent there a couple of days over the past few years. This spring I was super excited to give it a serious go. And on the fourth day of this season, I did it with great support from my friends. There is not much left to say about the route. This thing is just absolutely iconic and it‘s still a difficult test piece. Looking forward to moving on to the next projects!"
What was hardest for you redpointing it?
The hardest was to be that certain mental state to be able to climb the route because I knew I was strong enough to do so. Just focusing on the very next move and not trying to calculate if I can send it or not. And even though there was a little mistake during the send go I did not let go.
The first time Philipp made 8a headlines was in 2014, being 14-years-old doing his first 8c+, Reality Check. In total, the German has now done 15 routes 8c+ and 9a. This year, he has also done his first 8C boulder.
Stefano Carnati, who previously has done four 9a+, has done his 16th 9a by Super circo abusivo 9a in Paline. "It went down after 10 tries over 4 days. It’s a really beautiful 40m line and it took quite some time to figure out all the sequences." The picture is from the FA of Collasso Gravitazionale 9a in Candalino.
Martin Stranik has done the FA of Black Panther 8C in Vesec, video. In total, the Czech has now done twelve 8C boulders out of which five FA's and he is #3 in the 8a ranking game. "Great athletic bouldering on 25 moves. Thought it would be a fast process, but pumpy hands were sending me down six days in total, exhausted body, destroyed fingers. Low 8C." (c) Jakub Fric
Eloi Peretti has done his first 9a, Ça chauffe in Seynes. (c) Aurele Bremond
The route is divided into 3 different parts: A nice 6b with a no hand rest at the anchor followed by 10 meters of technical climbing on very small edges. The last 5 moves of this part are the crux of the route, on very sharp crimps and small footholds. Even if the route is 35m long, it is in fact very bouldery.
Once the crux is passed, there is an incredible overhang on perfect rock with big moves on pretty good holds. It is not so hard, it would be around 8b or 8b+ maybe, but you have to commit in every move if you don't want to fall which makes the ascent so spicy!
I spent around 15 tries in this route and at the end the weather was becoming warmer and warmer and I was worried I would not have the chance to pass the crux before the season is over. But I returned a last time to this crag and finally sticked the last one finger pocket of the crux and made my way to the anchor.”
Eliot Stephens has done his third 8C, The Origin Sit in Dinas Rock. "Wales first 8C. Power fade climbing, and aggressive from the first single 8A move. Hardest so far." (c) Jacob Martin
"In 2019 I put up the 8B+ stand start, and wondered whether there could be a sit. This year I had a look, and found a 5 move sequence that climbed into a position 2 moves into the stand. Those 5 moves of roughly 8A+ took me a good few sessions to link, and a handful more to link into the stand." More comments on his Insta.
Austin Purdy, who previously has done 67 8B's and 16 8B+', has done his second 8C, Dicktopia in Camp Dick. Video on his Insta. "The picture is from a session in the mid-afternoon when the wildfires were getting quite bad. It is actually not dark out the res tint and darkness is because of the thick smoke in the air.
I first started working this boulder in the fall and made good progress, however, I had to stop going to it due to extreme conditions because of wildfires in the area. I was hoping to return to it this spring, but again that was difficult due to snow, cold conditions, and a sprained ankle I injured falling off a highball in Hueco Tanks. So instead, I have mostly been focusing on training these past few months. It seems like that training has paid off because I was able to send the easier variation to this boulder, Little Richard (8B+/V14), quite quickly when I came back to it and Dicktopia soon after."
Could you please also comment on your extremely wide grade pyramid?
As for the grade pyramid, I really enjoy pushing myself and climbing at my limit, but I feel like many climbers are only interested in climbing boulders with higher numbers near their max grade. For me though, just because I can climb 8C doesn’t mean I don’t have fun climbing 8As just because it isn’t my limit. In fact, I feel like one of the great things about climbing harder is it gives you the ability to send so many more cool boulders because you can do them quickly, and some of my most enjoyable climbing days have been ones where I try and do as many 7C+/8A’s as possible instead of failing on something near my limit.
Lucie Hrozová, who has 14 medals from Ice WCs and later started bouldering last May, has had three goods weeks with new personal records. First, the 32-year-old flashed Red Hot Tortilas 8A in Sneznik. Few days later she did her first 8B, Temná hmota 8B in Sneznik (c) ON_OFF Production
"It was like two days I was trying to figure out a solution for smaller people. I have to match on a very small hold to be able to reach. Then on day three, I come it was half wet so I tried just the dry part and then on the 4th day it was dry and I tried my first like the real push and I send it :)" Video on her Insta
Then last weekend she did Conquistador 8B in Sklapsko which was set up by Jana Vincourková last yrar as the first female 8B in Czech. Video on Lucie's Insta.
"I climbed and competed mostly in ice climbing the last years and did a lot of mix and drytooling. Three years ago I had very serious surgery on my shoulder. I needed pitons, reconstruction of labrum, biceps and plastic of cartilage, and since then ice climbing is for me very painful. As I can't do it (but I still believe I will return one day), I started to do more climbing with fingers instead of ice axes. Last year I managed to send my first 8c route. Anyway, last year again I had a medical issue with compartment syndrome, and with this syndrome it is very hard to climb routes. Last May I started with bouldering. First I started just because I had to, because of the compartment, but lately, I really have found it very nice and I kind of fell in love with it."
by 8a Founder and Editor-in-Chief Jens Larssen including also Analyses, Reviews, Training, Polls and Opinions etc.
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