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Forum: GLOBAL / News / Alex Megos does Hubble 8c+ (9a) Login in to contribute
Alex Megos does Hubble 8c+ (9a)
OffLine 8a.nu
  2016-06-01 00:00:00    
UKC reports that Alex Megos has done Hubble which Ben Moon did set up in 1990 as a 8c+. It has previously been repeated four times and non of them have suggested 9a for it. However, as many strong climbers like Ondra, Graham and McColl have tried it without success the media have started to speculate whether it should be upgraded to 9a. In fact, UKC actually says that, "it's regarded as the first 9a in the world."

Alex Megos has not yet commented the grade.
OffLine A0 Climber
  2016-06-01 17:01:54    
Omdra tried Hubble after a world cup for a few hours, so it is not a reference. Sean Coll tried with humid conditions, so it is neither a reference. However, just people who climbed can grade it. 
OffLine A0 Climber
  2016-06-01 17:03:27    
Alex will talk about Hubble´s grade as soon as he gets out the country. 
OnLine Jens Larssen
  2016-06-01 18:59:18    
Adam Ondra is of course allowed to say that Hubble is as hard as Action Direct...anybody can use their freedom of speech saying it seems to be 9a. The main reason for the potential upgrade is due to grade inflation. Even Action Direct was considered 8c+/9a when it was put up.  However, I think UKC is pushing it a bit saying, "it's regarded as the first 9a in the world".
OffLine Christian Stohr
  2016-06-01 19:05:07    
Action Directe was graded UIAA 11 when it was put up by Wolfgang Güllich. Grade conversions at that point made it a 8c+/9a, later grade conversions got adjusted to making it a 9a. Action Directe never got upgraded in the UIAA system. I believe we had this topic several times before? I agree with Jens on UKC stretching it very far with 9a.
OnLine Jens Larssen
  2016-06-01 19:32:35    
It got adjusted due to grade inflation outside the UIAA system. Alex Huber has said that originally it was considered as an 8c+/9a but it was later upgraded to fit modern grading. Personally, I would think that Action Direct is one grade harder compared to the softest 9a's out there, i.e. Era Vella.  As Daniel Woods says, routes that seldom gets repeated, (i.e. AD) should not have the same grade as the most repeated (Era Vella).
OnLine rai
  2016-06-01 19:36:00    
Looking fwd to see if he states something about the grade. At some point he's done much more work than Action Directe where he's clinched the deal in about 2:00 and, interestingly, he's also done more tries than some of his quick 9a+ ascents (i.e. La Rambla 2nd go, Biographie in 3 go's in the afternoon, etc...). Now as FJ native Gülich heir, upgrading Hubble and confirming that AD is no longer the world's first 9a seems quite a bet... Wait & see then...
OffLine Kenneth Rasmussen
  2016-06-01 20:58:16    
Didn't Ben Moon already propose the upgrade himself?
OffLine JBee
  2016-06-01 21:16:23    
"Ondra tried Hubble after a world cup for a few hours so it is not a reference."
Nonsense! Why? Who has more experience than him in this grade range?
"Sean Coll tried with humid conditions, so it is neither a reference."
Even bigger nonsense! Really tired of hearing this cheap excuse. Everyone knows about the conditions there and everyone has to deal with it. If you whatch the video the conditions seem pretty much okay and it seems that McColl was able to spend more time there than just a few hours...
It's pretty simple: The route is f... hard! Neither a kneepad nor a cheap excuse will help you here!
OffLine Horss
  2016-06-02 08:21:16    
A0 Climber: Alex could have a remarkable impact on a potential Brexit !
OnLine Jens Larssen
  2016-06-02 09:38:21    
I like the message Megos sends out. Grades are fictive and not so important for the climbers... and that is a good counterpoint towards the media, who must say that grades are very important as it is so we select and present our news.  One alternative for Megos and others who do not want to give personal grades is to just report their time and effort and then the media can translate this into the Time Comparison Grading. From what I have heard, Megos did it pretty fast meaning Hubble might not be comparatible to a 9a route for him...but on the other side, he has also onsighted a 9a! On the other hand, the community should be grateful towards Adam Ondra and others who through personal grades have made them more accurate and stopped grade inflation.  On a side note, I find it strange that UKC and other media do not first upgrade it to 8c+/9a instead of jumping the slash grade they so often use. This is kind of illogical. For me, the best way to present the grade of Hubble is to say 8c+ (9a). 
OffLine User Deactivated
  2016-06-02 11:34:42    
OffLine Majkel
  2016-06-02 12:25:27    
media can translate this into the Time Comparison Grading. From what I
have heard, Megos did it pretty fast meaning Hubble might not be
comparatible to a 9a route for him...but on the other side, he has also
onsighted a 9a!" Sure, because a 4 meter max power testpiece is basically easy to compare with a 40meter endurance testpiece. Probably these two are the same, so the time comparison nonsense is 100% applicable. It's like comparing a 100m run with a 5000m, they're both just a differnt story. But thanks to good journalism they can be compared, right?
OnLine Jens Larssen
  2016-06-02 12:33:40    
I would guess it is best to say that Hubble is 8c+ or 9a... instead of saying it is 9a like UKC claims. It is very strange that UKC, who often uses slash grades, jumped 8c+/9a. The basic idea with grading is to compare difficulty. It does not matter if it is four or 40 meters, the idea is till to compare.  We compare difficulty with the time and effort we have put in. A route that you can onsight, is clearly easier than a route you need one day for, if it is your style, good conditions and you are in equal shape etc. 
OffLine rene spijker
  2016-06-02 12:35:23    
I always need to look twice to be sure I didn't end up on the website of the onion http://www.theonion.com/ Especially with remarks that the media can decide the grade we have reached a new high
OffLine User Deactivated
  2016-06-02 12:47:28    
OffLine Tuf La
  2016-06-02 13:25:05    
The number of repeats surely is not a good enough parameter to evaluate the difficulty of a climb. I use to go often to a bouldering area where one of the most unrepeated problems is a 5. It is obviously not hard, but so ugly and unpleasant that we decided to name it "witness the shitness"... Pretty/famous climbs get more repeats.
OnLine Jens Larssen
  2016-06-02 14:13:43    
8c+ (9a) we use when different opinions have been suggested for a route. 8c+/9a means that the grade is in between 8c+ and 9a, i.e a more specific grade. Do you have any other suggestion how to report when different grades have been put forward? It is Daniel Woods who has said number of repeats can also be a good indication for grades and I agree with him. 
OffLine User Deactivated
  2016-06-02 14:57:49    
OffLine Klem Fandango
  2016-06-02 15:16:11    
About time he did something difficult. Looks like all the training has paid off and he's finally managed to reach the British standard of 26 years ago :) If he carries on he may even climb the Joker one day ;) Now why are you grade trolling Jens, you naughty chap :) The media haven't speculated, I'm not sure where you get your info from. It is in the Limestone guidebook as 9a. When the number was put forward into the guide it was checked with a lot of people (but clearly not you). Ondra thought it was 9a. Ben agreed (you know the guy who climbed it first) after gaining more experience of world levels, despite him being the best in the world at the time. Most of the repeaters have given their opinion to the guide as have a number of 8c-9a climbers who have failed on it (and the list reads like a who's who of climbing). This is how guidebook grades are usually changed, rather than someone behind a computer picking a random number from the air without any knowledge of the line whatsoever :) Hubble is sick hard and the number means nothing. Most 8c+ and 9a climbers have sod all chance of climbing it because the crux is 8B+ with a stunning sequence (Biographie is a piss 7B by comparison). It is twenty seconds from the road and there for anyone with the necessary. If you are going by number of repeats from attempts it would be 9a+/b which is frankly ridiculous. It was years ahead of its time either as a route or boulder problem and is still one of only 5? in the world with a crux this difficult. As Alex says it is about an iconic line and I doubt anyone really gives a monkeys what number it is. Make it 8c, which i'm sure would make loads of Brits happy, we become even bigger twat sandbaggers than we already are. The bravest and humblest in the whole wide world :)  
OffLine Tuf La
  2016-06-02 15:28:49    
Ok thx for the input Jens. Did not see any argument here, but Hei! who am I to disagree? D.Woods AND J.Larsen said that the number of repeats and the grades are related. Ok........ Im convinced.
OffLine A0 Climber
  2016-06-02 15:55:57    
People who did not climbed the route grades Hubble. Discrediting those who red pointed it. I am loving it. 
OffLine User Deactivated
  2016-06-02 17:43:26    
OnLine Jens Larssen
  2016-06-02 20:45:10    
@ Klem: 8a tries to do exactely the same thing as the topo producers and the fine thing is that our data base includes 4 million ascents.

@ Markku: please suggest a standard.
OffLine User Deactivated
  2016-06-02 21:11:11    
OnLine Jens Larssen
  2016-06-02 21:27:18    
I am very sorry that you do not understand it and I can not come up with another explenation.
OffLine User Deactivated
  2016-06-02 22:14:02    
OnLine rai
  2016-06-03 00:11:11    
Well Alex stayed on mute, as expected, probably to keep Action Directe where it is, even if he's sent it in 2 hours and Hubble in 3/4 days...  not convincing 
OnLine Jens Larssen
  2016-06-03 11:01:29    
Based on the planet mountain intervjew with Alex, it seems he want to indicate that Hubble is closer to 8c+ instead of that 9a that UKC says.
OnLine rai
  2016-06-03 13:38:46    
Thanks, yep, saw it now, the myth goes on... 
OffLine Adam Wood
  2016-06-03 21:21:26    
Jens, it seems pretty disingenuous to blame ukc for reporting Hubble as the grade it is given in the current guidebook. If anything you should be criticizing the guide book writers (though I imagine that they did a fair bit of research before upgrading a route of such historical significance).Perhaps we could have a more objective discussion about the grade. What other routes are similar in grade and length and how do these compare to Hubble?  The Fly, The illusionist, action directe, and maybe dreamcatcher could be some examples. The Fly for example is a v14, maybe somebody knows the boulder grades (of the crux) of the others and how the route breaks down. Hubble is thought To be an 8B-8B+ into a 7c+, if we knew nothing else about the route what overall grade would we expect it to be?   To me this looks like a great opportunity for an interesting article.  Jens maybe you could contact climbers who have either done or tried Hubble and the guidebook authors and ask them for their thoughts on the grade. I know I would find that interesting.  Great effort by Alex
OnLine Jens Larssen
  2016-06-03 22:24:18    
UKC said, "It is regarded as the first 9a in the world."

I think they pushed it a bit by saying so and based on Megos comments, I guess media in general will not agree to the UKC's statement.

I think the media should report Hubble as 8c+ (9a).
OffLine Adam Wood
  2016-06-03 22:30:48    
This should be a discussion on Hubble not ukc, the guidebook writers were the ones who upgraded it
OnLine Jens Larssen
  2016-06-03 22:52:51    
Sure but I had to answer your question and I think it would have been better if they referred to the topo. If you would ask the topo authers now I think they would have used 8c+/9a if they used slash grades.
OffLine Adam Wood
  2016-06-03 23:07:33    
Maybe as I suggested earlier you should ask them,  I'd be really interested to hear their thoughts as they have obviously  done some research. also I thought it interesting that Alex said you couldn't compare 4 moves to 16 moves in a different style.  Like you said  in another thread,  This exactly what the grading system does all the time
OffLine Peter Schulz
  2016-06-04 00:26:20    
"also I thought it interesting that Alex said you couldn't compare 4 moves to 16 moves in a different style. Like you said in another thread, This exactly what the grading system does all the time"

OnLine Jens Larssen
  2016-06-04 09:17:28    
Sure and I agree with Megos, I could not sometimes compare difficulties for totally different climbs... But the media and the topo authers have to try... If not we have to incresas several grading scales for all types of climbing, not just bouldering and routes.
OffLine Lorenzo Cambria
  2016-06-04 11:42:10    
Megos talking about Hubble and Action Direct  http://tempuri.org/tempuri.html