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La Rambla 9a+ confirms grade inflation 

Click to Enlarge PicturePiotr Schab has published a picture on his Insta showing the hold FA Ramon Puigblanque said was eliminated on La Rambla 9a+. (c) Pablo Benedito

Originally La Rambla was Alexander Huber's project and in 1994 he made it to a first anchor as an 8c+. In 2003, Ramonet continued six meters by traversing right towards La Reina Mora 8c (9a). He tried to stay as close to Hubers original line meaning he eliminated a very good jug further out to the right.

After the three first repeats; Marin, Sharma and A Bindhammer, Ramonet said in a video that they did not repeat his original 9a+ line but an easier 9a variation. Later Ondra repated it commenting, "without resting hold although it is nonsense to consider it as prohibited."

To sum up, La Rambla with 25 ascents, is by the current grade standards, a well confirmed 9a+ (although not the hardest one) and Alex Huber's FA should today be considered 9a. However, it just might be that without adding grade inflation, everyone but Ramonet and Ondra did climb a 9a, this is at least what Huber and Ramonet thought at the time. Piotr has confirmed that the six meter extension of Hubers original line creates minor difference in difficulty.

It should be mentioned that Alex Huber has said that the 8c+ grade of La Rambla was based on that Action Directe was considered a hard 8c+ at the time.