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Autoengaño 9a by Sergio Verdasco

Wednesday, 30 September

Autoengaño 9a by Sergio Verdasco

Sergio Verdasco, an IFSC Para route setter, who did his first 8c in July, has done his first 9a, Autoengaño in Rodellar. "The big difference for me is that I stopped competing in may 2019 and started only rock climbing. I spent all this time climbing in different places, trying to improve my skills and of curse ¡A MUERTE!" (c)Guillermo Dominguez

"The route is crazy, around 20/25 meters of roof climbing, bolted by the master Dani Andrada. It is a roof but it isn’t only athletic climbing, it has lot of tricky climbing, drop knees, toe hooks, heel hooks, down climbing, knee bars (17 with my beta). At the end, for me it is more a technical, body tension and powerful climb."

On my first try I was able to do all the moves, which made me fell in love with the route. The beginning of the process was easy about each day I was improving in the route, but after being close to the send for the first time the mental game started. It was hard to battle with it but finally it ends in the best way possible.

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Soul rock dance 9b by Hyunbin Min

Tuesday, 29 September

Soul rock dance 9b by Hyunbin Min

Hyunbin Min reports on Insta that he has done the FA of Soul rock dance 9b in Korea, after five days of projecting. "I totally destroyed this brutal monster today." The 31-year-old was an active competition climber, having won one World Cup, until 2014. In 2018, the 162 cm tall did a comeback and made it to the podium in the two last events he entered.

His previous hardest is Open your mind direct 9a (+) in Santa Linya, video. "It's a lot more difficult than that route. I've also twice tried First round first minute. I compared it with those routes. I hope the world situation gets better quickly and many strong climbers will come and try it. Also this route is definitely my style."

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Tuesday, 29 September

Daniel Woods vs Blader Runner 8C

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Tuesday, 29 September

Ali Hulk Extension 9a/+ by Enrique Gallardo

Enrique Gallardo has done Ali Hulk Extension which was the original 9a+ line Dani Andrada opened in the Ali Baba cave in Rodellar in 2007.

"When Dani made it, it was for sure 9a +. Now new methods have come out, I think the correct thing would be 9a/a+. But it is just my opinion. When Dani made it, there were no knee pads, which changes a bit like it is now. My process was faster than I expected. A great motivation for the following projects."

It should be mentioned that now there exist also a "total" extra extension but still graded 9a+. Furthermore, last year Enrique did another variation start that ticks in as 9a which could explain why he did it so fast.

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Wang reports about bad conditions and close call for Ghisolfi's 9b+

Tuesday, 29 September

Wang reports about bad conditions and close call for Ghisolfi's 9b+

Henning Wang reports on Insta as well as in 8a comments from the scene up in Flatanger having witnessed the one hour ascent of Change 9b+ by Stefano Ghisolfi.

"You climb some hard moves for maybe a minute at most, then stand around in a kneebar or some other rest for 5-10 minutes, then repeat. The hardest moves are at the very start, then it gradually gets easier with some boulders thrown in here and there. The part about needing to keep it together for those bursts of climbing is true tho, and linking it all together in one attempt for sure is a mental challenge.

Close to the top he climbed into some sidepulls and suddenly seemed unsure of himself, having climbed into something that didn't look possible to reverse, the crowd was buzing. Was this it? Was he sweating like the rest of us and struggling to hold some shitty crimp? Would he take the hearthbreaker fall so close to the chains? But then he composed himself and made a full on dyno sideways. The cave went completely silent. I can't imagine a more gripped crowd in any world cup, and when he not long after clipped the chains the cheer was genuine and loud. Inspired and super psyched we then all went back to our own projects. And... failed miserably because conditions were still terrible 😂😂"

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Hypnotized Minds 8C+ by Matt Fultz

Tuesday, 29 September

Hypnotized Minds 8C+ by Matt Fultz

Matt Fultz, who did his first 8C, out of eleven, 18 months ago, has done Daniel Woods' Hypnotized Minds 8C+ in RMNP. Amazingly, the 29-year-old has had an almost continuous progress during the last ten years, with a peak the last year that moved him to #3 in the 8a ranking game. (c) West Mountain Media

From his Insta. "Such a process...In 2018 I made some big, promising links during just my 2nd session trying it. However, a few tries in I totally annihilated a pulley in my left index finger. Took months to heal. Took longer to mentally recover and decide to try Hypno again. Then followed hesitation, regression, doubt, bad weather, traveling for comps...the goal seemed to get further the more I tried it. But I continued to return with reckless optimism. Early Spring 2020 I made it to the last move and fell, but just days before I left for Switzerland.

COVID hit, RMNP shut down, and I struggled with situational depression. I gained 10 pounds. Climbing was the last thing I wanted to do. Even still, I would run through the moves in my mind once each night before bed. As July rolled in and climbing outside was given the green light, motivation began to swell again. Everything in my control was directed toward improving my chances at Hypno in the Fall. "

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Golden autumn in South Tyrol / Südtirol

EDITORIAL

Monday, 28 September

Golden autumn in South Tyrol / Südtirol

Advertorial: This summer was different. Full of uncertainties, slowed down for some. Stressful and restless for others. Perhaps it was also a time for pausing and contemplating. Many attributes can be applied to our current reality, and depending on the location and individual situation, the current pandemic and the associated crisis have had very different effects.

Many things that used to be easy have become more difficult: moving around freely, meeting friends, hanging out together, travelling. As a result, many of the most famous travel destinations seem to suddenly have moved out of reach, air travel has become impossible or unaffordable. Many of us climbers are looking for quiet areas, nature, and open spaces where you can avoid the usual crowds of popular destinations.

Secret tip for the autumn
While South Tyrol and especially the Dolomite area is highly regarded by many visitors, especially in summer and winter, autumn is a great time to have the most popular spots for yourself. The Dolomites are world-famous among alpine climbers, but South Tyrol also offers much more: the sport climbing possibilities are also surprisingly varied here.

Although South Tyrol is not yet as well known among sport climbers as, for example, the neighboring Tyrol or the nearby Arco, you will find numerous top areas here, which are anything but crowded. In addition, not only the Dolomite region in the southern and eastern part of the country offers wonderful, compact rock. Due to the unique geological conditions, a wide variety of rock formations and rock types can be found here. South Tyrol is characterized by various mountain ranges, has steep peaks, gentle valleys and meadows with beautiful landscapes. All over the country you can find great rock faces for sport climbing, on limestone, granite and gneiss as well as on porphyry and even marble.

Something for every taste
Thanks to the tireless work of the creative local developers, well-equipped areas have been established and are constantly growing, offering a wide range of difficulty levels. Some top crags for ambitious climbers, who climb in grade 6b to 8a, are for example Stohlwond in the north, Eiszeit (Passo Gardena), Traumpfeiler (Passo Sella), Rienztal and Landro Höhlen in the Dolomites area, Martell and Latsch in the west, Unterinn Matz and Morderplottn in the south.

During the autumn vacations, families also get their money's worth, as there are many crags that are easily accessible via short approaches and offer a safe, quiet environment and a particularly comfortable wall base. These include, for example, the Franzensfeste/Fortezza and Nock climbing crags in the northern and central part of the region, Tisner Auen, Juval, Marchegghof, Burgstollknott, Stuls to the south and west, Steinerne Stadt on Passo Sella, and Zörhof and Brüggele/Braies in the east.

You can view the topos for the above mentioned areas in the Vertical-Life app for free. Just download the app, register and enter the code CLIMBSUEDTIROL.

Because South Tyrol has a lot more to offer besides rock and nature, a visit is worthwhile especially in autumn: The colorful landscape invites you to go hiking or mountain biking, cities, museums and sights are pleasantly quiet right now, and the traditional Törggelen and other culinary highlights should not be missed. Autumn can be a time to enjoy the warming rays of the sun and the golden light, to spend time with friends and family and to fully relax while climbing. Find out more about South Tyrol here. Photo: Pauli Trenkwalder

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Change 9b+ by Stefano Ghisolfi

Monday, 28 September

Change 9b+ by Stefano Ghisolfi

Stefano Ghisolfi has done the first repeat of Adam Ondra's Change 9b+ in Flatanger. Previously, the Italian has done one 9b+ and six 9b's. (c) Sara Grippo
"The battle is over, unexpectedly soon, a mental and physical fight that took me more than one month and two trips to Flatanger, it ended today with a bloodbath lasted more than one hour of climbing to complete the 185 moves and 55m of Change, the very first 9b+ in the world, bolted and climbed only by Adam Ondra in 2012. I feel relieved, tired and happy, and I enjoyed everything it came with this amazing (and frustrating) journey.

It is a King Line, as many routes in the Cave, and it's one of the longest I think. The moves are amazing and the rock too, especially the last meters that are the easiest of the route, the rock is amazing."


Did you do any specific training or replicas back home in Arco prior to your second trip?
I didn't have time. We just stayed one week at home between the two trips. Before the first trip I did some specific training for my shoulders because from Adam's video it was easy to understand that the shoulders were going to hurt.

How much help did you get from Ondra’s video? Did you invent any new beta?
Adam's video helped me with some beta but I found most of the beta on my own because usually Adam's betas don't fit my style. Yes, better beta for me. I did a swing instead of putting high both feet as Adam did, I shared some video to compare my beta with Adam.

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Fin de Ali Extension Sit Start 9a+ by Dave Graham (38)

Sunday, 27 September

Fin de Ali Extension Sit Start 9a+ by Dave Graham (38)

Dave Graham, one of the leading rock climbers the last twenty years, reports on Insta, including a video, that he has done the second ascent of Jorge Diaz-Rullo's Fin de Ali Extension Sit Start 9a+ in Rodellar. "Basically if you see the cave, this is a left entrance to the ending. This adds 18 moves to the big undercling, and if you do Ali Hulk stand it adds about the same, but much easier climbing in my opinion."

Dave says he has started to work a new sit start more to the right. "The new low start seems to add around 8A+ into the 8B, with zero rest. The crux is the transition. Let's see if I can find better beta but it's seem pretty pure. And further, to the right, there are two boulders which seem around 8C.

The Ali Hulk 9b that Laura Rogora and Dani Fuertes did starts to the right in the cave. "What she did is 9b. No knee pads man...Crazzzzzy, 37 degrees. Nearly impossible for anyone hahahaha."

So to sum up. The Ali Hulk 9b that sit starts to the right in the cave begins with an 8B boulder followed with an 8c+ route. There are three harder entries that sit starts in the middle of the cave with project grades up to 8C. Adding an 8C boulder instead of the original 8B, would potentially make it possible to climb at least 9b+ in the Ali Baba cave!

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UPDATED: Fin de Ali Hulk extension 8c+ by Alizee Dufraisse

Sunday, 27 September

UPDATED: Fin de Ali Hulk extension 8c+ by Alizee Dufraisse

Alizee Dufraisse is working her way out in the Ali Baba cave in Rodellar having done two 8c+; Fin de Ali Hulk extension and Hulk extensión total. Now she could add the sit start creating a 9a+ or 9b depending where she finish. The 33-year-old, who graduated from the University as well as got married to Dave Graham in 2020, is also projecting Autoengano 9a, in the picture (c) Guillermo Dominguez

The former French Champion in pole vault (4.35) must be considered as one of the best female climbers in the world as she previously has done two 9a's and and onsighted 14 routes 8a+ and harder. In bouldering she has done four 8B's. On the competition scene, she has won Arco Rock Masters as well as having been standing on an IFSC podium. "I had a little break of Autoengano 9a (like going once a week) since 2/3 weeks. As I tried it all summer in the heat I was feeling I needed to change a little. Also as we plan to go to Siurana after and Autoengono is a huge roof without crimps and not really resistant, I use the Ali baba cave like training as there are more crimps and the combinations are resistant. For the mind it s good too because you can try harder and harder links but with success all the time. From now I will try Autoengano more as I spent a lot of time on it all summer 😅 it is a tricky one for me to! "

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