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Lawless extra 8A by Abigail Humber (17)

Lawless extra 8A by Abigail Humber (17)

Abigail Humber, who last spring did her first 8c, has done Lawless Extra (8A) at Fayette Station. (c) Tara Bennett

"I’m super excited that I was able to send Lawless Extra, and get the second ascent, as well as the first female ascent! On the day I ended up sending it, I thought I’d sent this boulder in the morning, only to find out once I’d packed up and returned home that I had started in the wrong position… I decided to go back out to the boulder in the afternoon, and I managed to send even though it was far too hot and humid. I was able to get the send faster than I was expecting as well, only taking three sessions to climb the boulder!"

Stop Sika 8c by Chris Frick (54)

Stop Sika 8c by Chris Frick (54)

Chris Frick has done Stop Sika (8c) in Rawyl. It was equipped by Betrand Martenet and the FA was done in 2003 by Didier Berthod at 8c. The completely natural line – hence the name – became an instant classic and settled at 8b+. In 2019 Bertrand rebolted the route, establishing in the middle section a more direct and harder line. After Samuel Ometz Re-FA the consensus now it is back to 8c. (c) Isabelle Bihr

"What a journey! At age of 54, it’s still time to rock’n’roll! No need to give up, keep on living the dream! ‘Stop Sika’ is a beauty. Well, for my generation 8c still sounds like a journey to Mars! When I was already 20 years old this was the hardest grade at the time. So it’s intimidating. Anyway, I had to try! I said to myself better fail on a dream route at my limit than regret too late to have never really tried.

The starting point was one year ago by checking the moves. Couldn’t do the two cruxes. From there the process was underway. My last 8c send was in 2016 at age of 48. To regain experience and confidence I hopped on other 8c’s, foremost trying ‘Mind Control’ at Oliana that could be the sibling of ‘Stop Sika’. The wonderful Vanda Michalkova created a training regime targeting my weaknesses. For several months I lived a climbing monk’s life spending most of my free time training. I never took T-Level supplementals (unhealthy and dangerous!). I work 4/7 and I’m not sponsored.
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EDITORIAL

by 8a Founder and Editor-in-Chief Jens Larssen including also Analyses, Reviews, Training, Polls and Opinions etc.


Luca Bana and the FA of Extrasistole 9a

Luca Bana did the FA of Extrasistole galoppante (9a) in December 2021. "Outstanding project on the 'heart' sector, bolted in 2010 by Yuri parimbelli and remained unclimbed until now. A mix of big exposure, rock quality and savage moves makes it one of the best hard routes of the area!"

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Grotta Azzurra and Špekmen 8A+ by Jana Svecová (Vincourková)

Grotta Azzurra and Špekmen 8A+ by Jana Svecová (Vincourková)

Jana Svecová (Vincourková) has done Grotta Azzurra (8A+) in Moravský kras and Špekmen (8A+) in Petrohrad. The latter she thought was a soft 8A. The 25-year-old has published a longer video from two days of bouldering also including a 7C flash and some easier sends.

Jana, did her first 8B+ this spring and has in total done 15 boulders 8A+ and harder, since 2019, some of which she has chosen to downgrade. As a youngster, she was an active competition climber, winning a Euro youth cup in 2012, but burnout caused her to take a two-year break before taking up climbing again in 2019. (c) Markéta Nevělíková

How is your climbing life nowadays?
My climbing life nowadays is a bit different since we built our own bouldering gym. We really enjoyed building it, but the training routine changed a lot compared to when we did not have the TeePee gym. The previous two years we climbed only on Moonboard and did some fingerboarding. Now we also fingerboard a lot but whenever we can we go to TeePee, probably as it's new to us and it's a lot of fun. Weekends, as usual, we spent in the rocks, and Sunday evening, the gym again. Sometimes it´s hard for me to be motivated to do all this because I have a full-time job and sometimes I am very tired when I go to training, but luckily when I convince myself to go and have a session when I'm there I get psyched and have a normal session. It takes a lot of convincing some days, cause we climb a lot. 😃 So most days we spent like this just climbing in our new gym then do some additional specific training for finger power or some core training etc.

What is your full time job and do you also work in the gym? My position is HR in an IT company 🙂. And the gym is mainly maintained by my husband. He puts all the holds on the wall and do all the stuff around the wall. Teepee is not a commercial gym but some of our friends have free access so we have like a small commutiny there which is nice and motivational.

Do you have long-term dream in climbing?
I have some, like climbing 8B+ or 8C, but I'm just 158 cm tall and have only a +1 ape index, so it's really hard for me to find something with reachable holds. Sometimes I am not even able to send 7B when it's reachy. But there is one 8B+ in Austria that I should be able to send. With the 8Cs I think if I would find the right one, just on tiny incut crimps I would be able to send it. Any suggestions? For the outdoor climbing, it is quite hard, with the job to go somewhere further for more days, last two years we were just unlucky alot, whenever we went somewhere behind the borders, the weather was trash. So that's why we are going again for a trip to UAE in December, to further develop local boulder potential, which I am looking forward to the most even without any specific project there.

Pure Dreaming plus 9a (+) by Stefano Ghisolfi

Pure Dreaming plus 9a (+) by Stefano Ghisolfi

Stefano Ghisolfi has done Pure Dreaming plus (9a+) in Arco, giving it a personal 9a grade. "Better beta was found in the upper part by some repeaters. So this time it is not a downgrade because of kneebars."

Will you go for Paris 2024?
I still don't know what to do next year, the main goal will be Silence (9c).

Foundations Edge 8C by Daniel Woods

Foundations Edge 8C by Daniel Woods

Daniel Woods has repeated Dave Graham's Foundations Edge (8C) and Scarred for Life (8B+) in Fionnay. More pictures on his Insta.

The 33-year-old has been on the cutting edge since age 15 when he did his first 8c+ route and first 8B+ boulder. Starting in 2005, he won the American Nationals ten years in a row and he has also won one World Cup. In total, he has done 40+ 8Cs and harder, including the FA of Return of the Sleepwalker (9A).

"I tried Foundations Edge a couple of times in May and a few more times in the past but it was always wet. This time it was bone dry and went the first day. The next day hooked up Scarred for Life (8B+). Both these blocs are world-class and it was an awesome experience getting to climb them. I am here for two more weeks. Next, I’ll try Fuck the System 8C+ and I also want to try the low start project into Permanent Midnight (8A+) or Solitary daze (8C). The low adds is around 8B+ into the 8A+ or 8C."

Harlem 9b FA by Loic Zehani

Harlem 9b FA by Loic Zehani

Loic Zehani has done the FA of Harlem (9b) in Orgon after some 15 sessions. It is a 50 moves steep link-up in between Bronx (8c+), an 8A boulder that continues to the top part and the 7C+ crux of Sachidananda (9a+). Video on his Insta

The 20-year-old did his first 9a at age 15 and in total, he has done 60+ routes 8c+/9a and harder, out of which 43 are FAs. Almost all his hardest routes are done near his home area above Marseille. He has done three 9a's in Spain, and all three he redpointed quite quickly.

What does a normal climbing/training week look like?
Every week is different because I work in a bouldering gym. My working days are different every week so it’s quite complicated to organize small trips. I climb on weekends on rock normally and one day during the week. I do one or two sessions a week in the gym. I climb normally about 4 times a week. I just try to go outside as often as possible.

What is your next plans?
In October I will try to go and train at Chris’ gym in Barcelona and maybe outside. I plan to be in Siurana in November for TENAYA and I would like to go back afterward. In February I will organize a small trip to go to Santa Linya. I don’t have any routes in mind but I have time to think about it. 😉

The Bizarre Ride 8A+ by Camilla Moroni

The Bizarre Ride 8A+ by Camilla Moroni

Camilla Moroni, #2 in the World Championship in 2021, has done The bizarre Ride (8A+) in Magic Wood. "New beta for weak and short people."

So, you found some new short person beta for Bizarre Ride?
I went back to Magic for just one day to send Bizarre Ride and Jack's Broken Heart, but I managed to only send the first one, which, unlike for most other climbers, it felt easier than Jack (for me). I found a beta that suits me better with a foot jam and a right heel that make the boulder more technical.

What's coming up next for you?
The next weekends I will compete in the Italian Championships, after that I hope to come back to Ticino to work on Heritage (8B+) and send Delusion of grandeur (8A+).

Is your long-term goal, Paris 2024?
Yes of course, in fact, this season I worked more on lead than in the last years.

La force tranquille 8C and an 8C (B+) by Nico Pelorson

La force tranquille 8C and an 8C (B+) by Nico Pelorson

Nico Pelorson has done and Practice of the Wild 8C (B+) in Magic Wood. There are videos of both sends on his Insta as well as many other recently done ascents. The picture is from New base line (8B+). In total the 25-year-old has done 18 boulders originally graded 8B+ to 9A, however, he has suggested 17 downgrades and one upgrade.

Could you tell us more about your latest 8C ascents?
I passed (sent) the Force on my first day in one session. I thought that was going to be the project of my stay but in 1h30 I was done with this boulder perfectly in my style. For Practice of the Wild, I had already tried a session during my previous stay at Magic wood, 3 years ago. This time I succeeded directly.

What are your next projects and autumn plans?
Maybe Gioia (an 8C+ in Varraze). It depends if I will get a holiday. And Imothep sit start, a project in Fontainebleau

P con fin mas hulk extension 9a by Iris Matamoros Quero (42)

P con fin mas hulk extension 9a by Iris Matamoros Quero (42)

Iris Matamoros Quero has done P con fin mas hulk extension 9a in Rodellar, which adds an 8A sitstart to an 8c+. The 42-year-old did his second and last 8c+/9a in 2015. (c) Juan Puig Valls

"This summer we traveled to Rodellar the whole family, my wife and my two children aged 1 and 6. Alibaba is a good sector to climb with children, so I decided to try something there. I started remembering Hulk (8b+) that I climbed many years ago. Then I did the 8c extension, and to finish the summer I was able to climb Fin de Ali Hulk extension (8c+). I tried a bit entering through the sit start from the ground through "Proa" but it was too hot and I couldn't. The holidays were over and we returned home, there I planned a specific training and diet for the route. I came back a month later and everything went very well, I felt very very strong and the temperature had dropped 15 degrees, so I was able to do it on the first day of climbing."

Söderlund, Digiulian and Harrington send Rayu 8c MP

Söderlund, Digiulian and Harrington send Rayu 8c MP

Matilda Söderlund reports on Insta that she together with Sasha Digiulian and Brette Harrington have sent Rayu, 8c MP on Peña Santa (2596 m) in Spain. Their ascent is the hardest ever graded big wall completed by a female team, including Söderlunf and Digiulian both doing the crux pitch. The 610m and 15 pitch long mixed route was established by the Pou brothers in 2020 and it was reported that, "The Basque brothers are convinced that, given the exceptional quality of the route, it will become a classic that will be pursued by the best climbers in the world."

Sasha (29) has been one of the world's leading female climbers for the last 15 years performing at the very highest standard in all disciplines. In 2011, she got the silver in the Boulder World Championship, and in 2013 she sent Era Vella 8c+/9a as well as sending Bella Vista 8c MP. She has also done numerous Boulder as well as big wall FAs. Matilda (30) has previously done one 9a and been #6 in the Lead World Championship in 2012. Brette (30) has repeated and established many hard MPs as well as alpine big walls.