Five 8A's by Lilli Kiesgen

3 June 2023

Lilli Kiesgen, who last year sent her first three 8A+'s, has over two days in Zillertal managed to send five 8A's; Clockwork Orange (8A), Analdin und die Wunderschlampe (8A), mother firestarter (8A),True Romance (8A) and Jam Session (8A). The 26-year-old is a former competition climber who was #9 in the World Championship in 2016.

Can you tell us more about the five 8A ascents?
We spent two days in Zillertal on our way from Innsbruck to Prague. I’m just on vacation in Prague and cheering for Yannick ☺️. The day didn’t start that well, we parked the van in the wrong parking spot and were pretty lost for an hour. When we finally reached the crag I started to warm up directly in the moves of Clockwork Orange. Surprisingly they didn’t feel hard and I could climb the boulder on my second try from the bottom. Afterwards, we went to Analdin - a real gem in the Forest! The holds and the line is just perfect. It took a bit until I figured out the moves around the sloper in the middle section, but I was still able to climb the boulder within an hour.

We were tired of walking around (and climbing!) so we did a break, cooked some tortellini and napped a bit. In the afternoon I just wanted to take a look at mother firestarter. I got hooked and climbed it after a really short warmup. I think two essential things got together yesterday, I was in the right mood and the conditions were good - not too warm and not too cold.

True romance is right beside the river and has mainly crimps. I figured out a beta with a toe hook so I don’t have to do the powerful extension move. Jam Session is a roof with some heel hook moves and a crimpy top out. The main crux was for me the far move with a bad foot over the edge. None of the boulders I did took long- I think that is essential if you want to climb a lot in a day.

Why do you think you are in such excellent shape?
I think my fitness increased so much because I started to train my weaknesses - steep walls with far moves on good or slopy holds. In the last year, I mostly trained on spray walls and on the Kilterboard and I think that is paying off now.

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