Connor Runge does his first 9a

12 September 2023

Connor Runge, who had 8b as his PB one year ago, has sent Spirit Quest (9a) in Squamish. Mike Foley made the FA in 2021 of the Tom Wright bolted line.

I’m really excited about climbing that route. It was an amazing process that started in July, just climbing with my friends and enjoying everyday there. Paradise valley gets kind of crazy weather in august where the air is so humid and there isn’t much of a breeze so I kind of just kept plugging away with low expectations and had the mentality that it was good training. When September rolled around and we got some good weather (cold and less humid) I was ready to get it done! A Low stress mentality and I just felt happy to be there with my friends made for a really wholesome and rewarding journey- or quest ;)”

What is your climbing background?
I started climbing on a back packing trip in Cambodia in 2016. They taught me how to belay and climb on top rope, that progressed to move to skaha bluffs and working at a gym, being psyched on sport climbing, and more climbing trips around the world. Just like so much time climbing outside and also in more recent years, a shit ton of training in the gym for sport routes!

Squamish is kinda rad for that because you have 3 bad ass climbing gyms that you can just train so hard in, with no distractions of good weather in the winter.

What about that great progress from 8b to 9a within a year?
During the winter I dedicated 3 months to training 2 days on 1 off. I trained specific energy systems during this which looked like 2/3rds Max power and 1/3 power endurance with a week and a bit of recovery after it was all said and done. I spent an average of 4 hours training per day doing various exercises and climbing specific exercises.

Now life is a better because I can climb outside and crank with the boys. I have to balance my climbing with my 40 hour work week, morning sessions at the cliff and on my days off. I have a 2 on 1 off schedule and 1 day a week where I do max bouldering, max effort campus, and max effort finger boarding in the Co-op.

What is your autumn plan?
Me and my friends are going to Smith rocks. I’ve never been there before, totally psyched to check it out! And then I’m spending 3 months in Spain and sometime in Turkey 🇹🇷

0  C O M M E N T S:
Sort by: Date A Reply A


20 September 2023

Schubert sends Project Big during his 6th Live attempt

"It was dramatic to the very end." On the 8a finish of Project Big in Flatanger, Jakob Schubert explains that a horn broke and he was close to falling. The last three minutes of the video show just how much this climb means to him."This horn could have ended my career... This was the biggest mental …

Open Your Mind 8c+ by Illya Bakhmet-Smolenskyi (17)

12 January 2023

Open Your Mind 8c+ by Illya Bakhmet-Smolenskyi (17)

Illya Bakhmet-Smolenskyi has done Open your mind (8c+) in Santa Linya. The Ukrainian made his first 8a news at age eleven when he did his first three 8c’s as we…


21 January 2023

Is onsight climbing on life support?

During the last few years, we have seen plenty of advancement when it comes to redpointing ability globally. In just the last three years, we saw close to 150 9a+ ascents which can be compared to only ten 9a+ ascents per year, last decade. Ten years ago, Alex Megos onsighted Estado critico (9a) but…


Spirit Quest 9a by  Jonathan Siegrist

4 September 2022

Spirit Quest 9a by Jonathan Siegrist

Jonathan Siegrist has repeated Spirit Quest (9a) in Squamish, after a handful sessions. "Hateful conditions for the most part but the route is just so insanely …

Connor Herson completes testpieces Crack of Destiny and Cobra Crack, plus a 9a for good measure!

17 August 2023

Connor Herson completes testpieces Crack of Destiny and Cobra Crack, plus a 9a for good measure!

Connor Herson, who last year did the bolted route Empath (9a+) on gear, has posted on Instagram that he has completed six very impressive, and three exceptional…

Ethan Salvo (20) does Zazen (8C)

15 February 2023

Ethan Salvo (20) does Zazen (8C)

Ethan Salvo has made what seems to be the first post-hold-break ascent of Zazen (8C) in Squamish. Harry Robertson did the original FA of the line, as an 8B, bac…