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Interklemezzo 9a FA by Adam Ondra  Facebook
 

Adam Ondra has done the Fa of Interklemezzo 9a in Kanjon Tjesno. This was his 163 route 9a and harder out of which he did his first 12 years ago when he was 13.

"Amazing wall in Bosnia close to Banja Luka. It was bolted by Peter Schwamberger and during two days at Chill&Drill Fest I made the first ascent. First pitch is 8b+, then hard boulderproblem into technical finish. More projects waiting." More info on his Insta

 
 
Hazel Grace 8C (B+) by Moroni and Hukkataival  (1) Facebook
 

Click to Enlarge PictureGabriele Moroni, who won the Boulder WC in Japan in June, has done the second repeat of Hazel Grace in Gottardo suggesting a personal 8B+ grade. Nalle Hukkataival reported on Insta that he did the first repeat just four days ago.

This is at least the fourth time Moroni suggested a down grade for an 8C including Highlander last month. In total the Italian has 21 boulders 8B+ and two 8C's recorded on his scorecard but it could at least have been six 8C's.

Moroni has been an active IFSC competition climber since 2002, when he won the Youth World Championship. In 2004, being just 16 years old he was #3 in the European Championship in Bouldering. In 2009, he was #3 overall and then he did not make any finals until two times in 2018, out of which one he won, see picture.

 
 
Two 8a+' by Cathy Wagner (53)  Facebook
 

Click to Enlarge PictureCathy Wagner has added two more 8a+' and three 8a's to her impressive scorecard the last two weeks. In total the 53 year old has done 687 routes 8a and harder out of which one third second go. During the last 12 months she has done 70 routes 8a to 8b. She has previously said that one laziness but also explanation for her sending so much is that she skips warming up and go right on it.

Cathy started climbing being 21 yers old back in 1985 and did her first 8a in 1994 and her first 8b when she was 35. You might wonder how hard she would be capable of if she started projecting a route for some months, instead of just doing multiple rather quick sends of routes up to 8b.

 
 
8B+ by David Mason in the best style possible  Facebook
 

Click to Enlarge PictureDavid Mason has done the first boulder ascent of Mortal Immortal 8B+ on Sean's Roof and it is a great community story showing every style has it's merit. "Floodgate into Sean's Roof, 23 moves in total with the top out. One of the best in the UK in my opinion, shame about the location but handy for pad carrying. 15 sessions over 2 months." Video - I do like to be beside the roadside.

Originally Jerry Moffat did the FA in 1996 of the stand start Sean's Roof 8c including three bolts. Later Mark Leach skipped the rope and as there were no crash pads it was even called the hardest "solo" in the world.

In 2010, Dan Varian and Ned Feehally then climbed the stand start above pads and thought 8A+ was appropriate. Last month, Dawid Skoczylas added a sitstart and did the FA of Mortal Immortal 8c+ which later also Alex Barrow repeated.

"They both climbed it as a micro route but for me it was a boulder and I had even brushed up the end, making it possible to top out instead of dropping off at the jug.

Grade wise it is definitely the toughest battle a problem has given me and took double the amount of sessions that I have put into anything else. For me it feels like 8A into 8A+ with the redpoint crux being right at the end. I think the movement mostly suits me but the number of moves certainly doesn't ;) Thanks to everyone who spotted, listened to my ramblings about it and cheered me on."

 
 
Adias Rockstars - Great interactive community show  Facebook
 

Click to Enlarge PictureJongwon Chon and Jernej Kruder are two of the most entertaining profiles in the bouldering circuit. The "brothers" created a great show in the super final in the Adidas Rockstars and it actually looked like runner up, getting Euro 3 000, was at least as happy as his big dancing brother getting Euro 4 000 in prize money.

Many of the invited actually say that this is the most fun competition of the all year and it is always 3 500 and full house. What we can learn from this and also other invitational bouldering events is that the format is not so important. Some sometimes complain about time restrictions and fairness etc but it seems the athletes do not bother as long as there are spectacular problems and intense interaction with the spectators and "brothers and sisters".

"Yesterday was crazy night. I enjoyed a lot @adidasrockstars 2018 Final I think I did well last night isn’t it?! :) Only me did it all top final round also I did all top semi and qualification round !! and I’m sooo happy made super final with my brother @kruderjernej.

We promise before competition see you in front of super final boulders and we made it!!"

 
 
Super Finals - Male  Facebook
 

 
 
Super Finals - Female  Facebook
 

 
 
Biographie 9a+ by Stefano Carnati  (4) Facebook
 

Click to Enlarge PictureStefano Carnati , who did his first 9a+ when he was 17 years old, has done Biographie 9a+ in Céüse. This was actually the 17 ascent of Chris Sharma's mega-classic from 2001 which makes it actually the third most repeated 9a+ in the world after Papichulo (18) and La Rambla (23). (c) Don Mason

" I started working on it last July and in September I was able to climb the first part a few times. Back on it this year in May, feelings were much better, but most of the times I struggled to find good conditions. Yesterday everything was perfect: with a strong wind blowing, I felt physically good, my mindset was calm and relaxed! I could not lose one of the very last chances to send it this year! And it all went in the right way!" More comments by Stefano.

 
 
Nordic Plumber 8c by Katherine Choong  (7) Facebook
 

Click to Enlarge PictureKatherine Choong, #17 in the Lead WCH in Innsbruck in spite of almost only training on rock, has done Nordic Plumber 8c in Flatanger. In the 8a ranking game, she is #2.

"Unfortunately, the day of the semis in Innsbruck, I woke up really sick. Stomach and head ache (I even vomit :-( ), my hole body was sore. But at the end, I was able to fight in the route and I'm pretty happy with my performance considering the circumstances. I ended 17th.

Then we flew directly to Flatanger. This crag was on my list for a longtime and I have to admit that my mind was blown by the landscape and the impressive cave.

To get used to the very steep roof, I first tried the first pitch of Nordic Flower (8b/+). I was so impressed by the super long line of Nordic Plumber that shares the same start as Nordic Flower that I could not resist to try it : almost 60 meters of dynamics moves, underclings, toe and heel hooks above the head on a perfect granit rock with a high red-point crux at the very very top on a slopey rail, where I fell on my second day. To exhausted to try again, I clipped the chains the day after in a good fight and hard mental game. Everthing I love ;)"
(c) Esteban Lahoz

 
 
Sam Elias - Driven to climb  Facebook
 


Sam Elias - Driven to Climb from SCARPA North America on Vimeo.

 
 
Miho Nonaka and Jernej Kruder Adidas Rockstars  Facebook
 

Click to Enlarge PictureAlex Puccio and Miho Nonaka, (c) Vladek Zumr, were the only ones to do all four boulders in the semi and they did it both in five tries. Keita Watabe won by flashing all four and in total, eight topped all problems. Three Japanese to the final and the World Champion Kai Harada #7.

In the final, Miho and Alex were in the lead from the start and in the super final Puccio takes and early fall but on the fourth move they are anyhow neck and neck on the fourth move until Puccio falls and Miho cruises to the buzzer.

Among the male, Jernej Kruder and Jongwon Chon were also in the lead the whole way. In the super final, they started dancing and the clock is ticking. After a butt bump they speed climbing to the top with Jernej some few seconds ahead... and more dancing on top...

Ekaterina Kipriianova and Tomoaki Takata got the bronzes. Complete results Finals video

 
 
Incubator 8A+ (B) flash revenge by Alex Khazanov  Facebook
 

Alex Khazanov who has won one Boulder World Cup in 2018 got his revenge after being #50 in Innsbruck WCH by flashing Incubator 8A+ (B). Video on Facebook.

"Probably not hard enough to be a proper 8B, but still a good frustration power flash straight after not making semis in the world championship. Felt like i had to escape to the rocks for the evening. Looks like my physical shape is not bad."

 
 
Foppiano Bouldering in Italy  Facebook
 

 
 
Baratzadeh/Kruder and Gejo win Adidas Rockstars qually  Facebook
 

Click to Enlarge PictureGholaamali Baratzadeh, #21 in the WCH in Innsbruck, and Jernej Kruder flashed all four boulders in the Adidas Rockstars qualification. Most of the big names from Innsbruck did take part and a total of 19 did do all four boulders.

Among the female, Stasa Gejo was #1 with three flashes and the first to not make it to the semi did not do any top. Also Miho Nonaka, Petra Klingerl from the WCH final made it to the semi. Complete results © Christian Waldegger

On Saturday the semi, Top-20 + 3 wild cards, will be live-streamed 11.00 following IFSC rules. The Top-6 kick-out final starts 20.15 where only the Top-3 remains after the two first boulders. Then these battle for the two spots into the super final starting 22.20 on two identical boulders. If there are ties, achieved holds will separate. In the super final, the fastest that hit the buzzer on the top wins.

Baratzadeh: "It was a great way to celebrate my birthday flashing all the boulders, maybe my best day climbing so far. This is the second year that I’m the best in the qualification; the problems were easier than in the WCH, but I still think it was hard to flash all four of them. So I’m really happy to have made it. I will try to keep my performance up for tomorrow at the semifinal and maybe the final!"

 
 
Competition and Outdoor synergy is individual  Facebook
 

Although competition climbing, especially in Bouldering with all parkour and slabs on volumes, is getting further away from outdoors there seem to be synergy in between the two disciplines for most. Jernej Kruder, the Boulder World Cup winner 2018, is the best example. The Slovenian is rather going outside doing all disciplines rather then training indoors.

In reality it is actually very hard to understand how doing trad routes and multi-pitches could help Kruder to win the Bouldering WC often on side-way dynos on volumes. One possible explanation is that it is about the mental game and to be obsessed about pushing 100 % no matter the challenge. Possibly Kruder would not have won the WC in 2018 if he only had trained bouldering indoors as he would have been bored, stopping giving 100 %.

On the other hand, the successful recipe for the young Japanese team seems to be hopping around in different bouldering gyms in Tokyo and almost never go outdoors.

The great conclusion is that there seems to be totally different patterns available to become #1 and this is something trainers should be aware of. Another interesting point is that almost all the best climbers, out there, have had a successful World Cup competition career. David Graham, Barbara Zangerl, Jonathan Siegrist and James Webb are some of the exceptions of the WC competition and outdoor synergy.

 
 
Valhalla 9a/+ by Edu Marin  Facebook
 

Click to Enlarge PictureEdu Marin reports on Insta that he has done Adam Ondra's Valhalla 9a/+ in Flatanger. "It has been very important for me to carry out this route after suffering a serious accident falling to the ground from 4 meters. It has been a whole process to maintain the motivation and form during the days of recovery, a whole learning." (c) Esteban Lahoz

Edu has previously done some 15 routes 9a to 9a+ and 8c onsights. The Spaniard has also done MPs up to 8c, boulders up to 8B+ and he won the World Cup in Chamonix in 2006.

 
 
Pari 8b+ (c) by Max Bertone (11)  Facebook
 

Click to Enlarge PictureMax Bertone has done Pari in Ouaki (video) giving it a personal grade of 8b+ just like his 13 year old sister Oriane. She has done 27 boulders 8A to 8B (+). Max has done three, the first one being eight years old. (c) Antoine Veillard from an 8b Max did this summer.

 
 
Paul Robinson's 10 projects for 2018  Facebook
 

 
 
Christof Rauch has a nice day in Silvapark  Facebook
 


The Rauch diaries Ep.I from 45degrees on Vimeo.

 
 
Nordic Plumber 8c by Mina Leslie-Wujastyk  Facebook
 

Click to Enlarge PictureMina Leslie-Wujastyk has done Nordic Plumber 8a in Flatanger and her story is really great. (c) Esteban Lahoz

The plan was to go bouldering for two weeks around Trondheim with her partner David Mason. Once realizing Flatanger was so close, she wanted to check it out and do some easier less steep routes but Maria Sandbu inspired her by doing Nordic Flower 8b+. In short, with rainy days that made David do his first sport route ever, Mina was full on the 50 meter super steep Nordic Plumber but no success. After returning back home for a wedding, another ten days Flatanger trip was booked and she sent it on her second last day. Video of the finishing rail.

 
 
Gancho perfecto 9a by Piotr Schab  Facebook
 

Click to Enlarge PicturePiotr Schab has done his 16th 9a, Gancho perfecto in Margalef. In the 8a ranking game, the Pole is #2 after Adam Ondra also including four 9a+' just the last five months. (c) Lena Drapella

"Wow I’ve been dreaming about this route since I saw the „Progression” movie for the first time. Came very close in my 5th try, then fall another few times in the very last moves to finally send it with ease."

 
 
Delicate Japanese selection for Tokyo 2020  Facebook
 

A total of 20 male and 20 female will participate in the Combined Sport Climbing in Tokyo 2020. 1 + 1 is guaranteed the Host Nation and 1 + 1 Tripartite Commission. There is also a maximum of 2 athletes per nation.

Qualification events are listed in hierarchical order
6 - Top ranked on the Combined World Champion in Tokyo 2019
1 - Overall World Cup Winner (OWC) 2019
6 - Qualifying event in Toulouse for Top-20 from OWC 2019
5 - Continental Championship 2020

In practice this means that the highest ranked male and female Japanese in the Combined World Champion in Tokyo will get the only qualification spot for Japan. Later the remaining team, can only hope to be the chosen one. There is no guarantee to qualify even if he/she win all events, after being second Japanese in the Combined World Champion.

If the, especially male, Japanese domination will continue it is likely that all non-Japanese Top-20 in the Combined World Cup will make it to Tokyo even if they are dead last in the Qualification event.

However, it might be that no athletes from Japan and another countries that did fill their quota in the WCH in Tokyo, will be allowed to compete in Toulouse. This means that it might be good enough to be Top-25 in the OWC in order to be allowed to do the qualifying event.

The result in the Combined World Cup is based on multiplication on your two best relative ranked result in all three disciplines. In other words, this means that there are almost no chance what so ever for the Speed specialists to make it happen. Further more, countries with high ranked Speed climbers can let they participate also in two Lead and one Boulder WC. Later based on the calculation result, they can decide to let that Speed specialist be included in the Combined relative ranking, if other athletes from their country benefit from it.

 
 
Sever the Wicked Hand, second 9a by Moritz Welt (17)  Facebook
 

Click to Enlarge PictureMoritz Welt has done his second 9a, Sever the Wicked Hand in Frankenjura. "Three sessions, rather low end 9a imo, but so beautiful! 8A boulder problem into 15m of hard endurance climbing with only one bad rest."

In total the 17 year old has done 235 routes 8a+ and harder and 44 boulders 8A and harder. In the 8a Combined ranking game the young German is #3 after Adam Ondra and Daniel Woods. (c) Manuel Welt

 
 
How many tops are ideal in a bouldering final?  Facebook
 

Click to Enlarge PictureDuring the World Championship in Innsbruck we could see that the number of tops the six finalist completed did vary a lot. Further more, it seems like there is no guideline from IFSC to the route setters how many tops to opt for. The number of preferred tops in the climbing community seems to vary as some think five tops as in the female final is perfect, meanwhile other prefers how it was in the male final, i.e. 15 tops.

Here is a diagram showing the 10 - 14 tops are ideal and that it is better with 24 tops rather then 0 tops. How do you think the optimal curve, # of tops versus target achievement in %, in general, should look like?

 
 
Japan dominated as a team in Innsbruck  Facebook
 

Austria got three golds and a bronze by Jakob Schubert and Jessica Pilz in the World Championship in Innsbruck. Slovenia did get two golds, one silver by Janja Garnbret and a bronze by Gregor Vezonik. However, based on the IFSC National Team ranking, Japan was superior and their result is just a continuation of their positive trend for several years. In lead, the male Japanese did get their best result ever.

Japan Team Statistics
Bouldering: Male 4 Top-7 : Female 2 Top-5
Lead: Male 4 Top-13 : 2 Top-8
Combined: Male 4 Top-8 : Female 3 Top-7

In the male Combined, Japan was allowed to participate with seven athletes who all were Top-31. Among the female, all their three competitors were Top-8. Imagine the Combined results if Japan had been allowed to participate with ten male and female. It should be noted that in Tokyo every nation is just allowed to participate with 2 male and 2 female.

Noteworthy is also that in the Bouldering World male ranking, there are ten Japanese in the Top-21.

 
 
Thor's Hammer 9a (+) in Flatanger by Josh Cornah  (1) Facebook
 

Click to Enlarge PictureJosh Cornah has done the 60 meter Thor's Hammer 9a (+) in Flatanger. (c) Henning Wang who the day after did Nordic Plumber 8c.

"It took about two months of effort. A lot of mental effort, especially for the the top half which I punted off of two times. Once from the very top. Eventually I found a key bit of beta in the last week of my trip, which helped a lot. Also the bottom seeps a lot, varying day to day. It never dried completely but some days it was un-climbable for me.

Then conditions cleared up and I got through the bottom twice, once I was so nervous and climbed terribly, punting off the last move. Then I got my shit together and next day on I enjoyed the climbing a lot more and sent. After not having much motivation before leaving NZ it was kind of what I needed to get my shit together and my mental game."

 
 
Rich Marcus 8c by Matilda Söderlund in Sweden  Facebook
 

Click to Enlarge PictureMatilda Söderlund has had a great day in Niemisel in the northern part of Sweden when she did one 8b+ and Rich Marcus 8c. (c) Tor Johnsson

"The best place I’ve climbed at in Sweden. 28 m of superb granite, the routes are super high quality - just amazing! It is truly a little gem and the community of climbers up there is fantastic. The style suits me very well, slightly overhanging and quite a lot of small holds."

In 2012, Matilda was #6 in the World Championship as well as onsighted three 8b's. Later she focused on taking a Master in Business Administration. Since two years she is a full time climber again. Next is a DWS competition in Mallorca and possibly Red River Gorge in October. Follow her on Insta.

 
 
8 Combined finalists, more excitement and reduced time  Facebook
 

The Combined Finals in Innsbruck were a success although they lasted around 300 minutes out of which only 20 + 90 + 40 = 150 min was climbing action.

Here is a solution for reducing and evening out the disciplines' time and still increase to 8 competitors which is crucial attracting more broad casting nations.

Speed: 25 min instead of 20 min
False start count as fall and everyone does two qualification rounds which will avoid potential anti-climax due to falls and false starts. Unfairness if the ranked #1 in Speed will meet ranked #2 will be avoided. The fastest four go to semifinal.

Boulder: 60 min instead of 90 min
Rotating start of the first three boulders = 36 min. The Top-4 advances to final boulder with reversed starting order after a 10 min break. This will increase action time and minimize dead moments when the athletes rest as well as increase final boulder excitement.

Lead: 50 min instead of 40 min

Advantages
Reduced and even out time, 25 + 60 + 50 = 135 min, incl. extra 10 min break, instead of 150 in Innsbruck
More competitors/nations competing will increase global interest
No anti-climax risk and more fair in Speed
More action on first 3 boulders as well as excitement on final boulder

It should be noted that keeping 6 finalists, the time consumption in bouldering could be 40 min instead of the 90 min in Innsbruck.

 
 
New Base Line, second 8B+ by Mile Heyden  (1) Facebook
 

Click to Enlarge PictureMile Heyden has done her second 8B+, New Base Line in Magic Wood. (c) Matti Stanik

"Falling 3 times at the final jug of this incredibly breathtaking line was one of the most frustrating thing I've ever experienced in bouldering but persistence paid off :)

Topping it out with some wet holds was a combination of felicity and heart attack! This line is really one of the most beautiful lines and I'm just super happy, thankful and satisfied to finish this one! More comments and pictures on her Insta.

 
 
Innsbruck was a success but improvements are possible  Facebook
 

Overall, the World Champion in Innsbruck was a success for the organizer, the route setters and IFSC. On the other hand it is easy to see where simple improvements are possible.

1. False starts in Speed can possibly be reduced by taking out the illogical rule that you have to start 0.1 second after the buzzer. One way of almost solve the problem would be to give one second penalty for every 0.1 second false start.

2. Route setters should have guidelines saying 10 - 14 tops in the boulder final are ideal etc. Further more, there most be a limit of sideway coordination dynos etc.

3. There should be two zones forcing the route setters creating more than just two moves out which one is simple.

4. Reduce the number of not so good participants by saying you have to have been positioned Top-50 in a WC the last two years to attend.

5. Make sure there is count back possibilities based on all rounds especially in order to avoid ties in Lead finals.

6. Multiplication in Combined should be replaced with adding the results of the three disciplines.

The advanced solution is to increase to 8 finalists in both Boulder finals as well as in the Combined. This would make it possibly to start rotating on the first three boulders which will save time and create more excitement. Before the last round, only Top-6 will start in reversed order which also will increase the final excitement.

 
 
Schubert winner of a great Combined World Championship  (16) Facebook
 

Click to Enlarge PictureThe male Combined final begun with the big favorite in Speed, Tomoa Narasaki making a false start in the very first race against Jakob Schubert. In the end, Jan Hojer took a controlled victory of Jakob Scubert.

Bouldering got a spectacular start when Narasaki skipped the first zone and instead made a huge diagonal dyno. Later also Schubert and Ondra skipped holds but the record was set by Hojer skipping three holds on Boulder three. Unfortunately everyone flashed the last boulder but apart from that the difficulty level was OK.

Starting last out in Lead was Schubert and once he passed Hojer's score he had secured the gold and the commentators were looking for a Hollywood ending with the Innsbruk son becoming the first to top out. Instead Ondra got his revenge winning by five moves over the Austrain securing his Combined silver.

Overall it was an over three hours packed intense show which the athletes seemed to like. Happy faces all over with the athletes cooperating as usual in every discipline. The race for the Olympic medals that will be handed out in 23 months. (c) Vladek Zumr

 
 
No visual false start by Narasaki and Noguchi  Facebook
 

Tomoa Narasaki was the big favorite to win Speed but unfortunately he made a false start. The definition of a false start is that you are not allowed to put pressure on the electronics until 0.10 seconds after the buzzer. Visually, by playing the Youtube video in slow motion, we can see that Tomoa did not make a false start. Instead his movement started after the buzzer and he must have put pressure before 0.10 seconds.

The female race started with the same situation for Akiyo Noguchi and was later repeated by Miho Nonaka in the small final. In order to avoid such anti-climax the 0.10 seconds in delay should be removed. Further more, a penalty of one second for every 0.1 second could be added.

 
 
Male Combined Final  Facebook
 

 
 
Janja Garnbret Combined World Champion  (8) Facebook
 

Click to Enlarge PictureJanja Garnbret started with being #5 in Speed where we saw two false starts, resulting in Petra Klingler being #3, after just having climbed one route. Sol Sa, who did not do the boulder final giving her more rest and better skin, was #2.

In Bouldering, Janja was superior doing all four again dynamic coordination boulders. Sol had her hand on two tops but fell to the ground. With 30 seconds left on the last boulder she was fifth in the ranking but with a spectacular she did it and advanced to runner-up.

In Lead, almost all girls were fighting with taped fingers and blood on their finger tips. Jessica Pilz topped and now the pressure was once again on Janja having to climb faster. As in Lead she stopped before the final move but she executed and was ranked #1.

Now the pressure was on Sol Sa, who had to beat Jessica's time to win overall but she fell low but anyhow ended #2 in the Combined after Janja but before Jessica. Complete results
(c) Vladek Zumr

 
 
Male final analysis  Facebook
 

 
 
Female Combined Final 11.00  (5) Facebook
 

 
 
Female Combined Prediction starting 11.00  Facebook
 

During the Combined Final on Sunday, the six finalists start with Speed followed by Boulder and Lead. As Janja Garnbret will win is quite obvious but then it just might be that Sol Sa from Korea will get the silver as she did not take part in the boulder final, getting a good rest and also time for the skin to recover. Here is the prediction. Note that, Miho is ranked last as she probably will have very hard to compete in at least Boulder, due to her shoulder injury. She was quite superior in Speed so probably she can still make a good result here.

1. Janja Garnbret 5 - 1 - 1 = 5
2. Sol Sa 2 - 3 - 4 = 24
3. Petra Klingler 1 - 5 - 5 = 25
4. Jessica Pilz 4 - 4 - 2 = 32
5. Akiyo Noguchi 6 - 2 - 3 = 36
6. Miho Nonaka 3 - 6 - 6 = 108

 
 
Kai Harada excels in great spectacular show  (14) Facebook
 

Click to Enlarge PictureClick to Enlarge PictureKai Harada, who was #3 in the Youth World Championship last month, showed to the best both on the tricky slab as well as the powerful and technical cordination boulders. It was a touching moment when he fell on his knee after he flashed the last boulder and once he looked up on the cheering crowd, we could all see him crying and then covering and wiping his eyes with the T-shirt.

Runner-ups, and equally happy, was the crowd pleasers Jongwon Chon and Gregor Vezonik. It seems there are no rivalry among the best, instead they are all a big happy family and that includes also the coaches.

1. Kai Harada JPN 44 - Also qually Combined winner
2. Jongwon Chon KOR 34 9:10
3. Gregor Vezonik SLO 34 9:17
4. Keita Watabe JPN 24
5. Kokoro Fujii JPN 22
6. Nathan Philips GBR 12
Complete results (c) Vladek Zumr

 
 
Male Boulder Final 19.00  Facebook
 

 
 
4 Tops by just the Top-6 in the semifinal but not Ondra, Kruder or Narasaki  (1) Facebook
 

Click to Enlarge PictureIn contrast to the previous setting in the Boulder Championship, we did see many Tops but just the Top-6 topped all four boulders. Adam Ondra did only make two and was down at #17 place. The finalists are: Kokoro Fujii, Jongwon Chon, Gregor Vezonik, Kai Harada, Keita Watabe and Nathan Philips. Complete results (c) Vladek Zumr

It was super dramatic in the very end when Jernej Kruder could not get a top although getting one hand on the top. In fact, 15 out of 19 did it out of which first go. Nathan Philips is the big sensation and he more or less did all the three last boulders with just seconds left on the clock. Twice he actually crimped a screw hold to move upwards. He has been competing actively in the World Cup for four years and his best ever result is #16.

 
 
Male semifinal starts 13.00  (3) Facebook
 

 
 
International Mountain Summit 2018: Meet the Climbing elite in Brixen - Dolomites  Facebook
 

Click to Enlarge PictureFor the 10th edition, the International Mountain Summit (IMS) in Bressanone/South Tyrol gathers mountain lovers from all over the world. “Meet.Mountain.People.Soul” will be the central theme for this unique festival. In the 2018 edition the stage will be dedicated to a lot of fascinating people and their touching stories. Among the more than 15 speakers, we look forward to welcome the exceptional climbing talent Alex Megos, the world-famous mountaineer Stefan Glowacz or the two stars of the mountains, Tamara Lunger and Beat Kammerlander.

The tickets for the six evenings are more than popular. So, grab your friends together and get your tickets for the IMS Nights. It will be worth it and we will give you a warm Welcome at the IMS 2018 from the 8th to the 14th October 2018 in Brixen (I).

 
 
IFSC need to give route setters guidelines  Facebook
 

The route setters job to find the right level is super difficult, especially for the female as there are no official IFSC female route setters. However, quite often in Bouldering, the problems are too hard meanwhile almost never too easy. In other words, in general the boulders should be easier and it is not a problem if several tops all boulders. On the contrary, this is in general more fun both for the spectators as well as for the climbers.

Further more, once they set parkour style starts, the route setters must make sure that they are not too hard.

It would be better for everyone if IFSC increased to two zones. This would mean that everyone would get some score and then you could make the cruxes gradually harder.

Imagine all the non-climbers watching the female boulder final on Eurosport. IFSC need to give the route setters guidelines so we can guarantee that the broad audience in Tokyo would not just leave the screen and the journalist writing critical reports.

I would opt for telling the route setters that in a final, you get the highest credit if 3 or 4 guys topping each individual boulder. This would probably mean the winner would do three or four tops. Possibly, the number of tries will be used to separate two climbers with four tops.

If we just see five tops and another six zones, the route setters should fail. With the same thinking, if we get more than 20 tops, they fail.

 
 
Garnbret, Noguchi and Gejo the only ones getting tops  (12) Facebook
 

Click to Enlarge PictureAfter the two first boulder, Janja Garnbret had 11 points (one top and one zone) and Stasa Gejo had one point. All the rest had scored zero although Petra Klingler seemed to have done the crux on the second boulder but the zone was further up. On the third boulder Stasa, with tape on four finger tips, was lucky and skillful using the palm on the sideway crux doing a very impressive top. Then also Akiyo Noguchi started to move doing the last two boulders but as Janja also did the third, she had secured the world champion title before she begun her not so focused last tries. Unfortunately, Miho Nonaka's shoulder injury did get worse and it will be very hard for her doing the Combined final on Sunday.

1. Janja Garnbret SLO 23 (Two Tops and three zones)
2. Akiyo Noguchi JPN 22
3. Stasa Gejo SRB 12
4. Jessica Pilz AUT 02 on 4 attempts
5. Miho Nonaka JPN 02 on 6 attempts
6. Petra Klingler SUI 00
Complete results (c) Vladek Zumr

Janja is now the first female that has won the World Championship in both Lead and Boulder. During the last 19 World Cups in both Lead and Boulder, her worst result is #3.

 
 
Semifinal analyses  Facebook
 

 
 
Lorenzo Puri confirms Highlander at 8B+  Facebook
 

Lorenzo Puri has done the fourth ascent of Martin Keller's Highlander in Sustenpass confirming the down gradings suggestions by Christof Rauch and Gabri Moroni. "Great day and funny moves, basically an endurance problem. About the grade i think 8c is another level!"

 
 
Nonaka just barely made it to the final  Facebook
 

Click to Enlarge PictureThe Female Boulder Semifinal started with another standing on a banner sign situation but luckily it did not happen for any of the 19 to come. Instead, the semi will be remembered by the Japanese favorites saving their show on the last boulder.

Miho Nonaka had failed eight times to do the first move, (c) Vladek Zumr, and with 40 seconds left she asked for support from the crowd and then she executed and actually skipped the second last hold and did go double dyno to the Top. On the first boulder, Miho squeezed in a crucial zone on her fifteenth attempt. Akiyo Noguchi had also failed to do boulder #1 and put on her ice face and did the last boulder on her second go.

Noteworthy is that on boulder #3, we did only see one zone carried out by Alex Puccio. Further more, Miho Nonaka will start first in the final taking the advantages of lower pressure and fresher holds. Out of the last ten World Championships, 50 % of the golds have been taken by the #6 in the semi. Her biggest opponents is Janja Garnbret who won the semi by three flashes.

Stasa Gejo is currently #7 in Combined but if she takes the silver in the final, she will kick out Sol Sa from the Combined final. If Miho would have failed to do the last boulder she could have missed the Combined final. Complete results

 
 
Female Boulder Semi 13.00  (5) Facebook
 

 
 
Multiplication creates strange Combined results  Facebook
 

Click to Enlarge PictureClick to Enlarge PictureBassa Mawem was #2 in Speed but ranked #1 among the Combined participants. Although he was among the 20 % last in both Lead and Boulder he was #13 overall. In other words, you do not have to perform on a high standard in all three discipline. What counts is to be good in one. Another example of this is Marcin Dzienski who was second last, out of 87, in both Lead and Boulder but as he was #2 in Speed he was #22 overall. If he instead would have won in Speed who would have replaced Bassa as #13 overall.

The example from the female showing that multiplication creates unfair and strange results is Alexandra Rudzinskis #10 overall after 65 * 58 * 1, out of 68. As it stands, she can actually move up to #8 position with bad results in bouldering for her opponents. Interim results

 
 
Rudzinska and Alipourshena World Champions  Facebook
 

Click to Enlarge PictureClick to Enlarge PictureExciting Speed finals where Rexa Alipourzena won ahead of Bassa Mawem who neck to neck did miss the last foot hold and came 10 cm short to the buzzer. Replay

Among the female Aleksandra Rudzinska won a Polish finale Anna Brozek. Other then that there were quite few false starts and also falls during the earlier rounds. Complete results
(c) Vladek Zumr

 
 
 
Bombero de la Roca 7a+ in Sant Llorenç del Munt  Facebook
 

 
 
9a+ and 9a FAs by Adam Ondra  (1) Facebook
 

Adam Ondra reports on Instagram that he has done two impressive FAs in Camaiore; La Terza Eta 9a which he did in four tries and Naturalmente 9a+.

"One of the best routes I can imagine. Slightly overhanging wall, tiny crimps, undercuts, shitty feet, resistant, bullet-proof rock. Tried for two days three weeks ago, now it went down after checking the moves. Rather high-end 9a+ I would say."

The level is going up in 2017 and Ondra is leading the pack. During four days, the 23 year old has done two 9b's, two 9a+' and two 9a's. It will be interesting to follow the progression during 2017.

 
 
Pau Contreras en Wonder boy (8b) FA, Sant Llorenç del Munt  Facebook
 

 
 
Rescat Emocional (7b+), Sant Llorenç del Munt  Facebook
 

 
 
8c+ trad by Ethan Pringle  (10) Facebook
 

Click to Enlarge PictureEthan Pringle reports on Facebook that he has done the FA of Black Beards Tears 8c+ at the Promontory protecting the 40 meters by 15 cams and one stopper. For the history books, this is the second 8c+ trad ascent - first was Beth Rodden's Meltown.

- This is definitely one of, if not the coolest and most unique FAs I've ever done in my life! I'd fantasized about how this fabled crack climb might look and feel for weeks before I saw it at the start of the month. When I first laid eyes on it, my jaw hit the floor.

On September 2nd I rapped in and installed an anchor right below the very top of the wall. I knew as soon as I saw the line up close that it was going to have some bad ass climbing on it and it did not disappoint. After 10 days of the usual kind of hard work and of course a fair amount of blood, sweat, a few tears right there at the end, I nabbed the red point.

 
 
Hungry Monkeys in Railay  Facebook
 


Hungry Monkeys from Ironmanfilms on Vimeo.

 
 
Domen Skofic from Slovenia wins in Chamonix  (6) Facebook
 

Click to Enlarge PictureDomen Skofic won in great style in Chamonix continuing his nice progress trend. As a junior, he was the best in the world and in the last three World Cups the 22-year-old has been improving every year being 9 - 5 - 4. Domen is also the #2 in the 8a ranking game after Adam Ondra. (c) Eddie Fowke

1. Domen Skofic SLO 51
2. Stefano Ghisolfi ITA 48+
3. Jakob Schubert 48
4. Gauthier Supper FRA 48
5. Roman Desgranges FRA 47
Complete results

 
 
9a+ FA in Flatanger and two 8b+ (c) onsights  (8) Facebook
 

Click to Enlarge PictureAdam Ondra is back in Flatanger where he has made yet another great FA, 120 degrees 9a+. "Absolutely crazy inverted roof boulderproblem after having done the first part of Elden Inuti."

In fact, Flatanger is the crag in the world with most hard routes and Adam has been one of the pioneers having put up six routes in between 9a+ and 9b+. During the last week, Adam has also onsighted two 8b+' and one 8a+ and that is measured by his personal grades. (c) Erik Massih - It never gets darker than this during the summer nights in Flatanger.

 
 
Close to 6 000 crags in the database  Facebook
 

In total, there are close to 4 million ascents in the 8a database and there is a Tick List available for almost 6 000 crags. You can add more crags to the database in a link at the top where you add routes and boulders.

The crag with most ascents is Fontainebleau with 104 000, followed by Kalymnos with 98 000.

 
 
Jon Cardwell has done Biographie 9a+: Interview!  (4) Facebook
 

Click to Enlarge PictureJon Cardwell, who did his first 9a in 2008, has done his long-term project, Biographie 9a+ in Céüse. It was bolted in 1989 by Jean-Christophe Lafaille and Chris Sharma made the FA in 2001. Biographie has seen 13 ascents to date, which makes it the most repeated 9a+ in the world. (c) Carlo Traversi

Check out Jon's comments for his nicest journey that took ten years and included 75 tries.

- Climbing means so many different things to me. It's an outlet for self expression, a vehicle to travel the worth with and experience incredible places. It's also a wise teacher that holds you accountable for every action from your footprint at fragile crags to your preparation for meaningful climbs. More than anything, it's just fun!"

 
 
8C after driving 7 000 km by Tamás Zupán  (17) Facebook
 

Tamás Zupán has set a new record of dedication by doing his second 8C, Zunami in Saalachtal, driving 7 000 kilometers to reach his goal.

- I was there with my friend in the middle of March and I climbed some boulders in the lower sector and I tried Gizmo 8B, which is a variant of Zunami. I live 600 km far from Saalachtal and I could travel there only on Wednesdays because of my work. I woke up at 4:30 a.m., started my journey from home at 5 a.m. and I came in Saalachtal at 11 a.m. I climbed until 2 p.m. and I arrived at 8 p.m. I climbed ’Gizmo’ on the second trip and finally I could manage ’Zunami’ on my 6th trip.

The first move is incredible complex because in the same time you should move separately your all limbs when make the crossing movement, after it is really crimpy, overhanging and that’s why I really liked it.

 
 
8b onsight by Laura Rogora (14) and one more today  Facebook
 

Click to Enlarge PictureLaura Rogora, who just did her first 9a, has onsighted Batuka 8b in Margalef and she put up all the draws by herself. Batuka has been recorded 57 times in the data base, all with 8b and only two guys have onsighted it before.

- The route is divided in two sections with a very good rest in the middle. The first four bolt are hard and I thought to fall every move. The second part is easier but there is another hard move. Today was the first day of the trip. In this week I would like to visit new crags: Santa Linya, Rodellar...

Today the 14-year-old onsighted Codigo Norte, an 8b in Santa Linya. "I'm staying here just for one week so I think I will climb only onsight."

 
 
Anak Verhoeven (19) makes the FA of Ma belle ma muse 9a  (1) Facebook
 

Anak Verhoeven, who was #4 in the Lead World Cup last year, has done her second 9a, the FA of Me belle ma muse in Romeyer.



Just later, it was repeated by Jean-Elie Crestin-Billet and here is his video. Jean-Elie actually called it an 8c+/9a.

 
 
Kajsa Rosén (18) - A new star in the making  (3) Facebook
 

Click to Enlarge PictureKajsa Rosén, who did her first 8c and flashed an 8b+ last week, has done Mind Control 8c (+) and onsighted T-1 Full Equipe in Oliana. There is only a handful of female who have onsighted at this level before. "What to do next? Still suprising myself here in Oliana."

Last year, the 18-year-old was #9 and #10 in the last two Lead World Cups she did.

Loic Timmermans, who is still ahead of Kajsa with one 9a, reachead out to 8a with a nice reflection.

"Kasja is crushing all the routes she's trying like nothing. I was even more impressed when she told me she did Mind control without getting pumped. I think she has a good attitude to. Not taking things too seriously, just climbing and see what happens.

 
 
Two 8c (+) OS and a 9a+/b by Adam Ondra  (2) Facebook
 

Click to Enlarge PictureAdam Ondra has had a great weekend. First he did the FA of Vicious Circle 9a+/b in Osp/Misja Pec, which he bolted last year. (c) Luka Fonda

"Left start into Sanski par. Bouldery and short 8c+ into the most of the Sanski par 9a (without first six moves). I would say two 8c+'s with a bad rest in between. Super powerful and resistant climbing.

The next stop was Medveja, a new secret zone in Croatia. It was one of the best days of climbing ever as I onsighted two 8c's ('The Core' is considered 8c+ by those few, who repeated the route) and the first ascent of 'More', 9a. World record maybe? Haha.

Most of the routes are slightly overhanging, crimpy on super solid rock with a minimum of Sika and in general fitting my style pretty well.

The last day I tried a project in Pandora, a different zone in Istria, which is definitely pretty hard in the region of 9b or more. Something like 20m of bouldering in the roof. Definitely a lot of rock around there worth returning for."

 
 
8B (+) flash by James Webb again  (2) Facebook
 

Click to Enlarge PictureJames Webb has traveled to Finland to take part in Sisu Masters with an amazing line up including Daniel Woods and Dave Graham but also to try Nalle Hukkataival's Boulders. First they had to crush some ice on the top of the Globalist in Sipoo and then James just flashed it and gave it a personal grade of 8B. The best flash boulderer in the world has now flashed 13 8B Boulders, four out of which were originally graded 8B+. (c) Nico Backström

"Absolutely incredible boulder from Nalle that I've wanted to climb on for so long. Perfect rock, amazing movement. One of the best!"

Next up could be Hukkataival's famous Sisu or Lappnor Project that the Fin has been trying for six respectively four years speculating that it could become the next level.

 
 
8b+ flash and a 8c by Kajsa Rosén (18)  (3) Facebook
 

Click to Enlarge PictureSimon Carter, a professional climbing photographer for 25 years, reports on Facebook:

"I've seen a lot of really impressive climbing over all the time I've spent at Oliana over the years... and add to that today's jaw-dropping sends by 18 year-old Swedish climber Kajsa Rosen. First up she hiked Fisheye (8c) first shot (after only working it twice yesterday), for her first of the grade, and THEN casually flashed Los Humildes pa Casa (8b+) soon after (pictured). Kajsa Rosen; a name to watch out for for sure!"

Simon is spot-on as the young Swede has had an extreme development over the last few years. In the past year, she was #9 and #10 in the last two Lead World Cups she did.

So how much beta did you get and do you still plan to get yourself a station wagon and hit the road?
I saw a french guy climbing it and he told me about a knee bar. I heard some screaming from below but it was very windy. My plan is to do some comps and some rock climbing and have fun. I graduate this year so hopefully I will have some more time for climbing.

 
 
8C by Ashima Shiraishi (14)  (21) Facebook
 

Click to Enlarge PictureReel Rock Film Tour comes with the amazing news that Ashima Shiraishi has made the first repeat of Dai Koyamada's spectacular Horizon 8C, in Hiei, Japan. The 14-year-old worked on the 30 move long roof problem in December and now she has done it on her third day, which means she is the first female and the youngest climber ever to have reached 8C. Here you can find Dai's comment on his FA including a picture where you see that it is almost a horizontal roof.

- "No doubt the Super Project was the hardest problem I’'ve ever done and that probably means it’s a V16 (8C+). However, I’'m not quite sure because I don’t have enough references to compare with. I would be able to fully understand what V15 (8C) is like exactly if I did more than fifty or so of them, but my accomplishments don’t even come close to that."

Based on Ashima's Route and Boulder ticklist, she has been the world's best female rock climber since she was 12 years old. Among the male, she is currently in the Top-20 including also having done two 9a's last autumn. How many 14-year-old girls are able to compete with the best male in any sport? (c) Brett Lowell

 
 
8C by Ryuichi Murai incl amazing 240 spin  (3) Facebook
 

Ryuichi Murai , who two weeks ago did two 8B+, has done Dai Koyamada's Babel 8C in Shiobara. "This problem links Catharsis(8B+) to Hydra(8B) via Uma(8B+). About 30 moves that include various moves made me enjoy myself."

Totally amazing! Watch that mind-boggling sequence where the 167 cm tall spins 240 degrees with his foot. How is it even possible to find such solution :)

 
 
Laura Rogora (14) does her first 9a  (3) Facebook
 

Click to Enlarge PictureLaura Rogora has become the first Italian female to do a 9a by Grandi Gesti in Sperlonga, which is a 20 meter long roof link up. Last year the 14-year-old won both Lead and Boulder Italian Championships and to make the story even more amazing, she mainly just trains in a Bouldering gym. She is #1 in the 8a ranking game. (c) Stefano Michelin/UP-Climbing

- It took me about 15-20 tries in one month and half. I went to Sperlonga seven times. I didn't do a specific training for this route because my purpose is training for competition. Now I need going to train hard for competition especially for the world youth championship in China in November. Surely I will continue to climb on the rock. I planned a trip to Spain in April I think I will climb on sight.

 
 
Mowgli repeats his 8B+ (C) twice after just a short warm up  (6) Facebook
 

Click to Enlarge PictureCharles Albert, who did the FA of the L'Alchimiste left exit last week, considered to be harder than the 8C right exit, did it today twice. (c) Neil Hart did get it on video both times.

"He is so strong he made it look like a 6A. I picked him up at one o'clock and we did a very quick 7B that took two tries and we drove to the L'alchimiste. He just pulled on and fell three times on the crux then sent it, then climbed it again so we could get another angle.

It is easier for him bare foot because he can hook his toes into the side pulls better. Definitely a new level!"

 
 
Women are catching up in the Santa Linya caves  (4) Facebook
 

Click to Enlarge PictureSome ten years ago, several men - notably Dani Andrada, Patxi Usobiaga and Chris Sharma - broke through to the next grading level establishing several 9a's and 9a+'s in Santa Linya. As of 2016, however, it seems that progress has become stagnant with Chris Sharma's two 9b FAs representing the highest attainable level.

Women, in the mean time, have caught up, in 2010 Angela Eiter did the first female 8c in Santa Linya. Quickly thereafter other women have followed suit with ten other females having completed climbs ranging from 8c to 9a(+) over the last two years. Complete stats. In this great picture captured by Luka Fonda, Janja Garnbret (16) flashes La Fabelita 8c.

If the trend continues, it is only a matter of time before women are on par with men in Santa Linya. While impossible to know for certain, one of the reasons behind such phenomenal progress for women may lie in the nature of the climbing in the cave where technical skill and endurance are of vital importance. That, and the fact that these ten women - and the many who will follow - are testaments of climbing strength and power.

 
 
Charles Albert interview  (2) Facebook
 

Click to Enlarge PictureFanatic Climbing has made an interview with Charles Albert, who did an 8C yesterday, giving it a personal grade of 8B+. The interesting fact is that the 18-year-old seldom trains indoor and the only training he does beside Bouldering is stretching. (c) Neil Hart

"Yesterday I was climbing alone without pads and luckily I met Kevin Thibaut and Mounir (strong but low profile Font locals) who were trying it. I joined them and I managed to send it on my first real session trying the left version. Regarding the grade, I would say for me it’s not harder than “Gecko assis”, the 8B+ I did barefoot last year… I also tried the sit start of “Alchimiste” which adds an easy but beautiful move but doesn’t change the difficulty. I have not done the sit-start version but will come back and try sending the whole thing because it makes the line even more beautiful !"

 
 
"A 14-year-old girl redefines rock climbing"  (6) Facebook
 

BBC has made an interview with Ashima Shiraishi, where, among other things, she says her goal is to break records held by her male counterparts. The 14-year-old claims to be the only female to have done a 9a+ (Direct open your mind R1 in Santa Linya) and the youngest person to have reached that grade.

It should be noticed that the route was originally a 9a until some holds broke and it was speculated that it might be a 9a+. Later Edu Marin repeated it saying it is still a 9a. The first woman to claim having done a 9a+ route was Josune Bereziartu (route: Bimbaluna), which has been subject of being downgraded.

 
 
8c+ (9a) by Thilo Jeldrik Schröter (20)  (1) Facebook
 

Click to Enlarge PictureThilo Jeldrik Schröter, who just turned 20, has been a successful boulderer for many years including being #4 in a Youth Euro Championship. Now he has been in Siurana for some weeks and it actually turns out that he has a great talent for routes as he just increased his personal best from 8b to 8c+, respectively, a possible 9a - Jungle Speed. (c) Tina Johnsen Hafsaas

"I worked the route for five days. The route is built up with a boulder in the beginning that could be something like 8A+, leading you into a rest. From there it's about 8a+ technical face climbing to the top, which for me was the redpoint crux as I fell there three times before nailing. Not many people that are able to do the start fall in the top, so I guess a route is never over before it's over for a boulderer, even though the individual moves feel easy."

 
 
9b again by Jakob Schubert  (1) Facebook
 

Click to Enlarge PictureJakob Schubert reports on Facebook with a great picture by © Elias Holzknecht/ WOODSLAVE productions,

"LA PLANTA DE SHIVA! After the biggest fight of my life I managed to clip the anchor of this amazing 9b in Villanueva del Rosario. 2nd Ascent after Adam Ondra. Super happy and proud to have send this one, my hardest route so far. Time for fiesta!"

Jakob has been the best male lead competition climber in the world since 2010 and in 2011 he won seven events straight. He also won overall in 2014 and last year he was #3. The Austrian is the fourth climber after Ondra, Sharma and Andrada to have done two 9b's. Here is a new Podcast.

"The process was actually rather special and I learned a lot about trying something that hard. The first few days on the route were pretty frustrating and I felt like I'm not strong enough for this route. I think it's the hardest route I have ever tried and because the rock is so special on the 9b part it's very difficult to find the right beta and can take a lot of time.
I kind of gave up on the route and climbed some easier ones for some days, but since it didn't get out of my head, I returned with more motivation and a better mindset and suddenly made a lot of progress. The send was epic, I almost fell at the second to last move and fought super hard to reach the last hold. Really happy and proud of this one.

2016 I will only do the Lead season (+BWC in Innsbruck) mostly because I want to have more time to climb outside until spring. I will fly to Hueco for 3 weeks beginning of February and after we have a 10 day training camp with the national team in Fontainebleau and in Andalusia. After that I'm not sure about my plans yet, but I really want to go back to Flatanger since it's such an amazing place and I would really love to try 'Move'.

 
 
Second 8c flash and an 8b OS by Janja Garnbret (16)  Facebook
 

Click to Enlarge PictureLuka Fonda comes with another superb picture of Janja Garnbret, who flashed her second 8c yesterday in Santa Linya, La Fabelita. The 16-year-old got the beta from Mina Markovic, who belayed her and explained the moves. The Slovenian onsighted also one 8a+ and La Ruta del Sol 8b.
Having been in Top-3 in all the three World Cups and #2 in the Euro Championship last year, Janja is #6 in the 8a Climber of the year list, where her Slovenian teammates, Mina and Domen Skofic are #2 and #9 accordingly.

 
 
9a for Markovic and 8c flash for Garnbret  (24) Facebook
 

Click to Enlarge PictureDomen Škofic comes with amazing news on Facebook, "Special day for our crew today!!! Both @miiiinam (Mina Markovic) and @janja_garnbret made history today by doing a 9a (Fabela pa la enmienda) and 8c flash! (Rollito Sharma extension) Congrats girls, you're outstanding and a huge inspiration!"

Mina won the Lead World Cup this year and Janja (16) was #7 but she participated in only three events, making the podium in all of them. In the European Championships she was #2. All of them come from Slovenia, which is one of the leading Climbing nations although it has just about two million residents. In the 8a Climber of the year list, Mina is #2, Domen #8 and Janja #12. More info to come. (c) Luka Fonda

 
 
8B+ in 30 min by Ashima Shiraishi (14)  (23) Facebook
 

Click to Enlarge PictureAshima Shiraishi (14) comes with amazing news on Facebook, (c) Ikuko Serata

"Santa Claus gave me the best Christmas present ever🎁! I sent Phenomena V14 (8b+) in Hinokage, Miyazaki!!! This was the 2nd ascent after @dai_koyamada and the first female ascent!! I once again surprised myself by sending it after about 30 MINUTES of working on it!!!"

This was the 14-year-old's second 8B+ and one of the quickest 8B+ ascents in the history of bouldering. Adam Ondra and Daniel Woods are the only ones who have flashed an 8B+. In the 8a ranking game, Ashima is #2 in bouldering but if we take in consideration both routes and boulders, Ashima has been #1 in the world since she was 12 years old.

 
 
8B again by Ashima Shiraishi (14)  (36) Facebook
 

Ashima Shiraishi reported on Instagram that she had sent Terre de Sienne during her first day in Hueco Tanks. It was set up by Fred Nicole as a hard 8B+ but now it is considered an 8B. She also made a quick ascent of Diaphanous Sea 8A.

The 14-year-old sent one 8B+ boulder previously (UKC reports four) and one 9a+ sport route. In fact, Ashima has had the most impressive combined female tick list for the last two years. It should be noted, originally both of these great boulders had a higher grade, however, we are reporting the consensus 8a grade.

 
 
9b by Pirmin Bertle  (44) Facebook
 

Click to Enlarge PicturePirmin Bertle has done the FA Meoise 9b in Charmey after 50 days of working on it and 150 tries, it was the last try the last day before leaving to Buenos Aires with his family for nine months! On the 30th March 2012, The German did two 9a's, Chromosome Y and X in 75 minutes, video. Meoise is a link up which actually goes straight up through two 8B cruxes.

Previously in 2015, he did one 8C+ and one 9a+. His 9b blog story is just amazing and here topo for Charmey and Jansegg.

 
 
8C+ and 9a+ FA by Pirmin Bertle and one even harder  (21) Facebook
 

Pirmin Bertle, who has done six 9a's, did yesterday do his hardest route ever, which made him share the news that in April he did a 8C+ FA, Drop a line in Couisimbert and that he in August did the FA of Des scènes bizzarres dans la mine d'or 9a+ in Jansegg, video. Last week, he also did the FA of Mediomalomania 8C in Lindental, "but the hardest thing in my life I sent yesterday."

Interesting is that he did not climb at all during the first six months of 2014 due to having caught bone mark edema. Then he just climbed very easily for some months until he started to work only on the 8C+ boulder. Interesting is also that he only trains five hours a week and never indoors. More info on his blog and on 8a tomorrow. :)

Drop a line 8C+ at Cousimbert, the real video from Pirmin Bertle on Vimeo.

 
 
Ondra wins in Kranj and gets the overall title  (4) Facebook
 

Click to Enlarge PictureAdam Ondra, the double world champion from last year, won in Kranj meaning that he got another overall victory. His first Lead overall he got in his debut season 2009, being 16 years old. Including being #3 in the Bouldering WC as well as being #2 in both the Lead and Boulder European Championship, 2015 is also his best competition season ever.

Overall WC ranking - Kranj results
458 Adam Ondra CZE
400 Gauthier Supper FRA
396 Jakob Schubert AUT
376 Domen Skofic SLO
354 Romain Desgranges FRA

 
 
8B+ by Ashima Shiraishi (14) again  (16) Facebook
 

Click to Enlarge PictureAshima Shiraishi reports on Facebook that she has done 8A, 8A+ and 8B+ all in one day. This confirms that she is the best female climber out there, although being just 14 years old. Photo: @leibav

- V11, V12 and V14 in a DAY! Holy CRAP!!!!!! I had the best day climbing today!!!! It's been a while since I climbed on some REAL ROCK!!!! Started off the day by sending Worthless V11 then Wetness the Fatness V12 pretty quickly! Later on, I decided to give Nuclear War V14 a try and managed to send it!!!! Nuclear War hasn't seen a 2nd ascent in 9 years (when Matt Bosley did it). Psyched to have gotten the 2nd and 1st Female Ascent! Stay tuned for some video

 
 
Low prices at EPIC TV Shop  Facebook
 

Click to Enlarge PictureEPIC TV is the biggest video climbing media and their webshop is growing with low prices, and that includes the biggest brands.

Solution (in the picture) is Euro 109 including free shipping. In fact, once you become a member you get 5 euro for free and then 10% lower prices. This means that new members pay euro 93.50 for Solution and then you get a 5 euro coupon.

You can also buy ropes for under 100 euro, a Mammut harness for 45 euro, a Grigri for 69 euro and even get a quick draw from Climbing Technology for Euro 6.95! And do not forget that the prices are 10% lower for members. It seems, pretty much all brands are at sale there so check it out and start saving some money.

 
 
9a's FA and 8c's onsight and ethics by Adam Ondra  (2) Facebook
 

Click to Enlarge PictureAdam Ondra has added another 20 climbsand some interesting comments to his scorecard including 1 670 ascents, from his recent trips to Flatanger and Arco. The hardcore hightlights were two 9a's FA in Flatanger, Brunhilde low start and Witchhammer. "A new line bolted by Adam Pustelnik...Really fun climbing, different sections with rests in between, never easy. Flatanger at its best."

The double world champion from 2014 visited also Hell, some two hours south from Flatanger by the Trondheim airport, where, among other things, he did the last project giving it 8c+ based on an interesting ethical comment. "The climbing is 8c, but clipping the 2nd bolt adds the grade."

The film producer Petr Pavlíček was with Adam and says Adam had also bolted some new lines one out of which includes the biggest dyno ever and it comes after a 9a route. Adam Ondra story of Change 9b+ from 2012.

 
 
First 9a by Erik Grandelius after reading a book  (2) Facebook
 

Click to Enlarge PictureErik Grandelius seems to be in the best shape of his life, having onsighed two 8b's and done his first 9a, Cabane au Canada in Rawyl.

"We spent two weeks in Switzerland. The first day I realized that I was in good shape as I surprised myself by falling at the chains on the onsight of Paradis Articifiel 8c. We stayed another two days in Rawyl but then it became to warm (even though it is at 2000 meters) so we went to Gastlosen for a week. When we came back I sent the Cabane au Canada the first day on the second try.

Altogether I made six tries over three days. I feel that I have reached a deeper focus in my climbing, especially the last four days of the trip I dwelved into an almost meditative state as soon as a tied in, even on warm-ups. During the trip a was reading "Das Glasperlenspiel" by Herman Hesse and it made a great impression on my climbing. The great spiritual and intellectual discipline and the strong organization in the fictional Kastilien became an inspiration for me. I also feel that climbing hard in the alps also requires a great deal of organization and discipline as you have to time the weather, the resting, the nutrition and mental state perfectly.

 
 
Ammagamma 8B flash by James Webb  Facebook
 

Click to Enlarge PictureJames Webb has flashed his 11th 8B, Ammagamma in Grampians, which was put up by Klem Loskot in 1999 as an 8B+.

"Despite the unstable weather we're making it happen down here in OZ. The climbing style and rock quality has definitely exceeded my expectations. Yesterday was a perfect day and I took advantage by flashing the mega classic 'Ammagamma' 8B. I've been wanting to climb this one for as long as I can remember and it feels amazing just to climb on it. @matt_fultz also took it down!"

In total, James has recorded 88 flashes 8A and harder and without all his personal gradings, it would be over 100. The runner-up in the flash category is Daniel Woods who has flashed some 65 boulders 8A and harder, out of which five are 8B's.

 
 
8a and 8a+ onsight by Kajsa Rosén (18)  Facebook
 

Click to Enlarge PictureMoon Climbing reports that Kajsa Rosen from Sweden, who got the bronze in the Youth World's last year, has had an amazing onsight day in Voralpsee in Switzerland.

Beside onsighting Alaska kid 8a and Mordillo 8a+, she fell at the top of it's 8b extension. On Friday, the 18 year old is going to compete in the Imst Lead WC. (c) Stefan Ösund

- I did not go all in for the move as I did not think 8b onsight was possible. Kind of a stupid failure and I was not so happy. The 8a+ part was actually not so hard for me. I spent like 30 minutes on it.

 
 
Adam Ondra redpoints Three Degrees of Separation and suggests 9a+  (1) Facebook
 

Click to Enlarge PictureAdam Ondra has made the second ascent of Three Degrees of Separation, a route Chris Sharma put up in 2007 as a 9a. In an old Planetmountain interview it was listed by Adam among "The Routes I Cannot Climb!"

"Three massive dynos into perfect jugs is something that is very rare on rock, especially in the middle of a route. I tried it for four days in 2010, but was actually never able to do the crux dyno, not even as a single move, although I was very close."

"You have to be able to do that dyno easily as a single move, because the 20 meters of 8c (5.14b) below really pump you out. Well, dynos aren't my cup of tea, I don't have the pure explosive power to perform them, but at least I can take advantage of my height. In any case, the fact that it remains unrepeated despite many attempts indicates that this one could easily be upgraded..."


After the ascent, Adam told UKC

"It is just too specific to grade, and I know for big dynoers like Jan [Hojer] the dyno is not that hard, but to get there fresh is quite a different story. To me it felt like the hardest route in Céüse, but that doesn't mean that it is definitely at least 9a+, because it doesn't fit me that well, but my suggestion is 9a+ and we will see." © Pierre Délas/Kairn

 
 
59 000 members and 3.5 million ascents  Facebook
 

Yesterday, the 59 000th 8a member signed up and in total there are now more than 3.5 million ascents in the data base that will help you to find the best crags and routes in the world. We are working on a totally new design that will be presented on Thursday both for the 8a community as well as on the Outdoor trade fair in Friedrichshafen.

 
 
8B by Jan de Smit (41) in Rocklands  (2) Facebook
 

Click to Enlarge PictureJan de Smit, who started climbing in 1990 and was the Belgian Champion in 2013, is in his best shape ever, being 41 years old.

In the last week he has done 13 boulders 7C+ and harder including Mooiste Meisie 8B which was originally an 8B+. It is also interesting that he 185 cm tall has given personal grades for most of the hardest ones, including calling his flash of Stalker on the horizon, which was set up as an 8A, an 7B/+. Blogspot including great videos.

- Above all comments and grades, Rocklands has the most amazing boulders you will ever climb, anywhere.

Progression at 40+ involves more discipline and commitment. As you age the impact of sleep deprivation, malnutrition and over training can be deeply detrimental to your improvement. Over the years i have become more engaged in training and coaching, gathering information and experience I felt the need to bundle all this information in an effort to create a giant database filled with relevant information about training for climbing. All of this work resulted in the creation of Steelfingers.be , a free website with training tips and exercises for climbers.

 
 
Portrait of Jakob Kronberger (14) after his first 9a  Facebook
 

Here you have the link to Jakob Kronberger's very impressive scorecard.

A portrait of Jakob Kronberger from Wild Country on Vimeo.

 
 
8c (+) 2:Go by Ashima Shiraishi (14)  (1) Facebook
 

Click to Enlarge PictureAshima Shiraishi has done Nordic Flower 8c (+) in Flatanger on her second go, which was put up as an 9a. From Instagram: "It was nice to take a break from my wet/hard project and to climb this 160ft beast!" She is talking about Thor's hammer 9a+.

The 14 year old has previously this year done one 9a+ and one 9a and actually, she has had the most impressive female tick list in the world for two years now. © Henning Wang/MadSkillz Media comments, "I have never seen a female climbing so naturally and making hard moves looks so easy. Her endurance is just amazing apart from her power.

 
 
9a by Jakob Kronberger (14)  Facebook
 

Click to Enlarge PictureJakob Kronberger has done Klem Loskot's Intermezzo XY gelöst 9a in Plombergstein. Last year, when he did his first 8c+ at the same crag, he said: "I would like to climb Intermezzo. If I can't do it this year, I already know what to expect in 2015!"
Alhough he is just 14 years old, Jakob is already 179 cm tall. More info to come. The youngest to have reached 9a are Ashima Shiraishi and Adam Ondra who were both 13 years old at the time. © Salzburg.com

 
 
Ben Moon, almost 49, does Rainshadow 9a  (9) Facebook
 

Click to Enlarge PictureBen Moon, who turns 49 next week, reports on Twitter@

"Just climbed my 2nd 9a 25 years after my 1st. Rainshadow 4th ascent. FXXXXXX psyched!!!"

His first was Hubble at Raven Tor which he originally graded 8c+ back in 1990. Ben is mostly known for short powerful routes and for boulders, while Rainshadow, put up by Steve McClure and repeated by Adam Ondra and Jordan Buys, is a power-endurance monster route.

Steve has previously said, "Rainshadow is a truly brilliant route, perhaps my best, on the best UK sport cliff.

 
 
8C(B+) in few tries by Adam Ondra  (1) Facebook
 

Click to Enlarge PictureAdam Ondra has spent some time in the Rocky Mountains National Park together with other boulder WC athletes. There, Adam needed just a few attempts to repeat White Noise 8C (B+) and flashed Bear toss 8B. © Chad Greedy (Instagram)

The double world champion from 2014, was #3 in the Boulder WC last weekend in Toronto. In the forthcoming WC stage in Vail (Colorado) he will compete together with 132 participants, which is about 50% more than last year.

 
 
Seb Bouin does Chilam Balam 9b  (10) Facebook
 

Seb Bouin, who has done several 9a and also 9a+', has done the third ascent of Bernabe Fernandez Chilam Balam 9b from 2003. Originally it was graded 9b+ which created a lot of controvercy and in 2011, Adam Ondra (Video) did the 80 meter super steep route and suggested 9b.

 
 
Ethan Pringle does Jumbo Love 9b  (17) Facebook
 

Click to Enlarge PictureDPM Climbing has the full story of Ethan Pringle making the first repeat of Chris Sharma's 80 metre long Jumbo Love 9b in Clark Mountain. Ethan had been projecting Jumbo Love since 2007 and here is a great video from 2013. © RV Project - Walker Emerson

In 2000, Ethan took the silver in the Youth World Championship and his best result out of seven Lead and Boulder WC's is #16. On rock he has done a handful of 9as and Biographie 9a+ in 2007, when he was the #1 in the 8a Combined ranking game thanks to three 8B+ boulders he also climbed that year.

Previously only six climbers have done 9b or harder (excluding boulder routes) out of which Adam Ondra and Chris Sharma with 12 and 8 are the only ones to have done more than one.

"WOW!!! Yesterday I climbed my ultimate lifetime dream route, the most bad-ass sport climb I’ve ever laid eyes on, Chris Sharma 's ‪#‎JumboLove‬! WOW. I can’t believe it’s over. I say that half in a literal sense because when I sent it, it was almost like an out of body experience that I can barley remember happening. My story on Jumbo Love spanned over eight years and involved every emotion I can think of: awe, excitement, love, admiration, longing, apathy, fear, frustration, anger, resignation, acceptance, and eventually, MOTHERFUCKEN GLORY!!!

 
 
Jonathan Siegrist does Era Vella 9a (8c) on his third try  (75) Facebook
 

Click to Enlarge PictureJonathan Siegrist blogs about having sent Era Vella in Margalef on his third try. Chris Sharma made the FA in 2010 as a warm up and said it might be a soft 9a. Howwever, Jstar says many 8c's are much harder. He also says that the hardest sequence is like a 7A+ boulder problem.

"I climbed Era Vella and I had a lot of fun doing it. Grades are there to offer a foundation for difficulty but the more I climb the more I realize the plasticity of grading. I could comment on how I feel that Era is easy and make a list of routes graded 8c that are much harder and blah blah blah but what I'm after is not a grade, it is an experience. So never mind all that."

It should be mentioned that, over the years, 8a has received many comments like this by climbers who have done Era Vella but who wanted to remain anonymous. By checking the stats and all personal records including quick sends of Era Vella, 8c+ is probably a more correct grade for this world class 45m route.

Climbers should focus on the beauty of the climbs and "never mind all that (grades)", as Jstar explains in his blog and leave the grade to the media who are trying to report as correct news (grades) as possible.

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