It seems hard to believe but it was 30 years ago back in 1984, aged just 18 that I made the first ascent of the UK’s 2nd 8a Statement of Youth. At the time it caused quite a stir in the climbing world not because of it’s difficulty but because I had used 7 bolts to climb it. To those not familiar with climbing in the 1980s this might seem pretty strange but back then sport climbing in the UK didn’t exist. Although it would take a few years this was all going to change and Statement played a big part in this change. During the past 30 years I have made several 1st ascents around the world but there are none that I am more proud of than Statement of Youth. Located at Lower Pen-Trwyn (LPT to most people) on the Great Orme in North Wales the route takes a line up the right-hand side of the steep left hand section of the cliff. With no particular crux section but very sustained at the grade it’s a right of passage for the sport climber aspiring to the magical 8th grade.
To celebrRead More...
and set of School Holds which will hopefully make life a bit easier all round. Rather than setting one problem at a time, this method puts the full set of holds all on the board at the same time in a random position. Then we have set problems on this grid from 6c up to about 8a which can all be climbed without moving a hold. For these problems you only need the grid ref on the sheets below. Not rocket science but just a more traditional way of setting problems. More sheets will follow in this manner. Let us know how you get on and send us some problems based on these setups if you spot any alternatives you consider worth a bash.
We have set up 2 new sets of problems 05 & 06 and for those of you with 2 sets of School Holds we have combined problems 05 & 06 into 1 uber set of problems!
Those of you who follow my Twitter/Facebook feed might be wondering how the Evolution story ended. Unfortunately there was no happy ending but the story isn’t over yet and all being well, a new chapter will begin again in the spring.
I’ve not climbed now for about 3 weeks but up until that point all my climbing days over the previous 6 weeks were spent on Evolution. That’s about 2 days a week with no training days in between. It’s amazing how quickly you can rack up the days when fully committed and Evolution in terms of days invested is now probably number 2 on my all time list behind a certain route at Kilnsey. Hopefully the outcome will be different this time around!
After getting bogged down on Evolution’s second crux for several days but still doing big links I finally got the breakthrough I had hoped for and during 1 session red-pointed all the way through to the last move 3 times. Unfortunately the last hold was seeping and I got spat off while setting up for theRead More...
I have been going often to Monte Amiata since 2006 with my friends Lorenzo Frusteri and Beniamino (Bengio) Chiesi, who moved there a few years ago in order to increase the value of this area.
Among the many areas that I visited in years I missed the one located near the summit at nearly 1500 meters high. It is a very beautiful cliff. Bengio told me about it, its name is Achille, he felt for a long time but
Conditions are better and works on renovation are nearly finished. Time to climb more and work less. During summer I didn't climb a lot, but enough to keep my physical form from dropping to low. In a last few weeks I trained a bit more and started to go outdoor more often.
There was always a line in our local boulder spot Ožbalt, that was sooo obvious, but with a scary top-out and
Summer as always went by quickly, I think that the human beings should be on holidays 350 days a year…
After finishing the maintenance works in the gym, on August 9 my girlfriend and I decided to leave for a 10 days tour between Val Daone and Zillertal.
First stop in Val Daone, an enchanting valley beneath the Adamello, well known for its ice falls. In recent years a large group of climbers from Trento and Brescia is enhancing it with granite blocks which have nothing to envy to the Ticino ones.
After one day running, I decided to try a block that I already spotted on Internet, a very beautiful top furrowed by very good crimps released by Gabriele Moroni.
I spent half a day searching for the best sequence for hands and feet, but after the first laps from the bottom I realized that I spent too much energy in the study of movements and I decided to come back more rested the day after.
Next morning I waked up painfully, because in the lasRead More...
During these months I was able to travel a lot with my friends and with my family. In particular in August I spent ten days in Briançon, because my brother Marco and I prefered to check new climbing cliffs instead of going as usual to Ceuse. We pratically climbed in three beautiful crags:
-Face Bouc-La Saume-Rue des masquesFace Bouc is situated in Ailefroide Valley, a great steep granite wall with fantastic routes. In one day I managed to climb three different lines here, I was very amused! The easy routes to the very left of the crag were all in the sun so I decided to warm up on Cambonne Beurre 7a+ but when I arrived at the anchor I realised that this was wrong way to start the day because I felt quite pumpy and "locked" but after a great rest I felt OK.
The second route was Fiaschi Natique 7c+ just on the left of CambonneRead More...
This year I started my outdoor season in Gorge du Verdon. After one week of multipitch-climbing every boulder, and every sportsclimb felt simply like a joke (not because I was too strong, but because of the height). So this summer, as I got injured at my finger too, I was in the perfect mood to try alpine routes.As I spend most of my „climbing-career“ in bouldering and sportsclimbing it is pretty exciting to climb in an alpine area as Rätikon.Already after 2 days there, I found a „new“ passion. Over the years I got stronger in climbing, but never went seriously to alpine stuff. And u can believe me: it’s like starting climbing again (at least on the first days).Just few days ago I had to lead my first route – from the bottom to the top. Hell, u can not believe how proud I was about myself not starting to cry and getting more and more used to climb mostly all parts „just“ with my feet. It was amazing to see, how small the „holds“ and how flat the steps can be – Read More...