My first really long-term project is done. It's been quite journey.
I first tried it in the spring of 2010 and I kind of believed that I could do this thing one day. But it wasn't until a few weeks ago when I knew that it was just a matter of time. Luckily there was no snow in Maltatal yesterday so it was possible to top out this huge bloc.
The story begins in spring 2010 when I first tried it. But it felt hard on my fingers so I didn't try it again until fall that year. That's when I first did all the moves. I remember I was pretty psyched but I didn't realize that this is just the beginning. The crux is to put it all together. It's a pretty long climb with 12 moves to the jug. For me it was the hardest to move my feet twice. I was pretty confident that I could do it then but if I think about it now I was still so far away. Next time I tried it was this spring (2011). I think that was when I first did all the foot transitions but I didn't feel that I could juRead More...
Last week I had some days off so I had a long weekend and went to this French area with some friends. It is very close to the Spanish border, so the trip is not too long from Madrid. The weather was amazing, sometimes too warm.
The first night I climbed "Psoas Mole" (8B) on my third go. Next day I repeated it for the video and did "Psoas Pole" (8A+), which shares the start but finishes straight instead of going to
For three years I have been motivated to go to check Rampage 8A, situated in Varazze. Finally the day has come last week on Wednesday 8 December. Me, Marco and my dad decided to go there, although they were just good supporters, because Marco didn’t climb much in that sector. I knew that the path was quite long and a bit complicate but not such as it is truly: 25 mins to go down with an adventurous downhill on a leafy descent and 1 hour to come back to car on the same
The Front Range of Colorado has been in a deep freeze state for almost two weeks, meaning there's been next to no climbing outside recently. That makes this a good time to announce the release of my new book titled Bouldering: Movement, Tactics, and Problem Solving, produced by the internationally known climbing publisher, The Mountaineers Books. The perfect introduction for someone getting started in the sport, the book covers the practice of bouldering from every angle including equipment, climbing technique, safety and training. Included are short essays from many of the masters of the sport including John Gill, Dave Graham, Fred Nicole and even Moon Climbing's very own Ben Moon!
April 2011. I reach the crimp, hold it well. A short thought: I got it... Christian behind me is supporting me... suddenly the foot slips, I find myself back on the pad. Dammit, so close...
Then brainfucks... slipping feet… uncoordinated... frustration… back home. Unfortunately I didn't have any fitting opportunity to return afterwards. Too warm, work to do, not strong enough… the entire summer past like that, but well.
Finally autumn arrives and this year it is a supreme one. November is incredible, dry but not too cold. My first visit in the valley leads me to a sector called “Chaos”, where my friend Alesandro did the first ascent of two very beautiful problems 2 years ago; “Nunuria” 7c+ and “l'importabile” 8a. If they weren't in impassable terrain like this but in a more beautiful location they'd be dream lines for sure... Nonetheless they are incredible to climb on. I did “l'importabile” in a few Read More...
Not content with blazing a trail of first ascents in North Yorkshire, Mike has also been making some significant ascents in North Wales.
“Whilst on Fatneck Si's Stag Do weekend at Porth Ysgo, in early December, I made the possible second ascent of Dolly Rocker at Porth Ysgo graded 8a/8a+. I sent details of this plus some other FA's I did to local guidebook writer Si Panton.”
A video of the weekends action is available below and includes ascents of:
Dolly Rocker 8a/8a+ (2nd Ascent?) Simple Things 7a (2nd Ascent?) Dog Star 7c ish (First Ascent?) Sirius Sikini 7bish (First Ascent?)
In the second part I'm going to talk about the two venues I have visited over on the West side of the North York Moors during the 2011 summer.
I began by visiting the Wainstones with an old friend Andy Jennings. The bouldering at the Wainstones is fairly well established by the Moors standards. Even I had been before. However Lee Robinson (Beta Guides) convinced me to pay another visit to help develop some more lines. Climbing some good new problems richly rewarded me. The best was on 'The Prow' boulder being the right arête climbed strictly on its left hand side. I called this 'Cruel Intentions' as the landing is terrible and graded it 7c. I also managed a nice 7b+ish roof problem just to the right and a cool extension to 'The Prow' at a grade harder and a Read More...
Time has past since my last blog, (blaa blaaaaa blaaa.) Honestly, I have been doing the same things I always do. Climb outside on “PJ’s (projects),” train hard in the gym, and going outside again to try a PJ, or just some easier problems. Each has its benefits and cons. Everyone knows how important it is to achieve goals at your limit. As great as that is you sacrifice a lot just climbing on projects and not putting in the time to stay strong. So what can you do to keep yourself on form? Have a gym sesh. Not that exciting. Then after a tune up in the gym it’s back to the PJ’s or something else. Maybe some easier problems that will boost your motivation? And then once you are psyched again, back to the PJ. And that is what I’ve been doRead More...