24 Dec 2007

Weekend in Cresciano and Chironico

I can't believe I've never been to these two amazing bouldering areas.....there's a crazy amount of stuff to do! We stayed with Gaz, Martin, Liam and Micky in Claro on Saturday night and they talked about so many good problems that I need to climb....I got crazily psyched and couldn't sleep that night because all i could think about was climbing. On Saturday, me and sabby made the 3.5hr trip from Laengenfeld to Cresciano. We warmed up and went up to the "La Pelle" bloc. I climbed the direct method of "La Pelle" V12 within 5 minutes and then spotted Sabby on the 7b+/7c to the right. It went dark pretty fast so i couldn't try anything else in cresciano. We wanted to go to Brione on Sunday but Martin didn't feel too well, so we headed to Chironico instead. I was quite psyched to try and flash "Schule des Lebens" V13. I had a go and got through to the move up to a sloper just before top and my foot popped...after a few more attempts I did it. I then went on "No Mystery" V12 and did it first go. Here is a pic of me climbing "No Mystery":

I spotted sabby on "That Goes Left" V10 and then went to "Miss Swiss" V11 and watched Gaz and Micky dispatch. The problem is really high but climbs amazingly involving big moves on positive crimps. I flashed the problem and didn't look down. Can't wait to go back.

13 Dec 2007

Ski Instructor and Physio

For the last month and a half I have been taking part in a ski instructor course run by SnowSport Tirol. It was pretty intense because the whole thing was in German. Yesterday was the exam and I was pretty nervous. First was the theory section and I'd revised loads so it wasn't too bad and then came the practical part...I was so nervous but managed to ski ok and passed that too....phew. I really do believe that climbing has helped me through some of the hardest things that I have had to overcome in my life, for example in the ski instructing course, the first day I harldy understood anything and I felt like giving up but my inner drive just pushed and I basically learnt all the German around skiing everyday for 4 weeks. Climbing has taught me so much about self-belief and motivation...it really is a fantastic sport. Anyway, so now I'm a ski instructor in Tirol and I have a physio job in Imst starting soon but in the meantime I'll probably do some ski teaching to earn some money.

3 Dec 2007

Belasten V12

We had to abondon a trip to Brione due to bad weather so I headed to Tumpen for a few hours to try my little proj there. The problem involves just 2 moves up a really steep face on the craziest crimps I've ever pulled on...normally i like crimps but these are just too small. Pulling on must be v10 alone and then you have to get into this weird eygptian and make a move up and left to this one finger crimp..when you have this you have to weight it and pop to a goodish hold and keep the tension to hold to the swing. The problem is called 'Belasten' meaning 'to weight it' and I've graded it hard v12.

26 Nov 2007


I have finished the first phase of my training plan last week and I am starting to feel very fit which means my body is ready to start training hard. The second phase will take me up to Christmas and once thats finished I am ready to start specific training for my 2008 goals. I am really looking foward to Jan'08 because I have some trips to Switzerland planned. It's going to be hard to keep disciplined during December because I am so psyched to get over to Brione to try "Vechia", because it is just 3 hours away! Maybe I'll head over for a weekend to give it a go.

5 Nov 2007

Tumpen Bloc

So Ben and Rachel have checked out Tumpen Bloc and the grades and quality have been confirmed. Here is a list of the hardest Tumpen Bloc boulders:
-Die Perfecta Welle v12
-Stick it Extension v11
-Diamonds are Forever v11
-Crocodile v10/11
-Stick it v10
-The new Am Wasser Gebaut v10
and lots more in the v4-9 range.

Here is a list of projects that still to be climbed:
-The 1st proj by the path....prob v14?
-Proj on Steep triangle boulder (pic below)....prob v12/13
and a few more that need to be cleaned.

Going to start work on a topo asap, if you want a copy email me: s.watson@gmx.at

Plans 07/08

Well I've had to forget Mordor now until next year...it's just too cold. I've waited for a warm day for the last 4 weeks but it's just getting colder and the snow is falling! It's kind of cool because now I have a major focus in the winter and I've planned my training so that I will be able to climb it in March next year. To be honest I have no stress with this route and I just enjoy trying it, on my last days trying it I was able to climb the 25m 8c section around 3/4 times in a day so my fitness has improved alot! The other day I sorted my training out with Sabby...it's kind of cool and I've never tried it before but it seems to be what all the good climbers in Tirol seem to do so lets see what happens! Next year I want to be able to establish myself in the 8c route/8b boulder grade and I think with training I should reach this goal. But for now I'm just focusing on my training and climbing some hard bouders on granite. I have been trying a bloc in Zillertal called "Incubator". It was 1st climbed by Markus Schwaiger but was originally Jerry Moffat's project. It's graded 8B and is one of the best boulders i have ever tried. It's on a 45 degree overhanging granite wall with perfect edges and big locks. I went to try it on Sat but couldn't do one move until some cool Austrian Boulderers came and told me the way and now it is on! I'm england now for a week but will go back and try it early next week. I think this week i'll head to Raven Tor and see what looks good. Hooligan sounds good..boulder into 8b!

7 Oct 2007


Went to try Mordor again today, felt much better today but still need one rest just below crux! Here are some vids taken today on Sabby's phone.

6 Oct 2007


Tried Mordor again today and now it is getting soooooo close. I did it twice with just 1 short rest below crux section (the route is approx 25m-30m). I realised today that WHEN/if I do this route I'll be the 2nd brit to climb this grade abroad. Going back to the UK next Friday for 1 week for Team Training and to attempt the Ace so should be cool. Can't wait to feel the grit again. Here's a pic from Slipstones earlier this year, it makes my hands sweat looking at it.

2 Oct 2007

Die Perfekte Welle

I climbed another new problem at Tumpen (Austria). It's a perfect 7m overhanging arete with really nice bouncy moves between slopey holds. I found it tough to grade but I think v12 is about right. Hopefully the grade will be confirmed soon. check out the website http://www.oetztalclimbing.com/ for more info about climbing in this valley. Hopefully a small topo will be produced for Tumpen and I would like climbers who have climbed in this bouldering area to contact me.

30 Sep 2007

Tumpen Bloc

Climbed two new problems at Tumpen the other day: Crocodile v10/11 and ? v8+ The bouldering in Tumpen is fantastic, it's basically Magic Woods but just smaller. There are a few hard problems here now in the v10/11 range on pristine granite with perfect landings (better than Magic). Yesterday I started work on a new project, its a 25ft overhanding arete on amazing granite and has perfect moves....it overhangs by 45degrees and the ground travels up behind it so it's perfectly safe. I did all the moves yesterday and it feels in the region of v12 and it will be a world classic (seriously it is one of the best lines I have ever seen). I am thinking of writing an article in a British climbing mag to try and get some people here. Ben Meeks is planning a trip over here to check this place out and it will be cool to see what he says. If you want any information about this place just contact me by email: s.watson@gmx.at

25 Sep 2007


I decided to pull-out of the World Championships after having a in-growing toe nail removed....ouch. However, last weekend the pain went and I could wear a climbing shoe again (typical). It was really annoying to be not competing in the world champs because I felt strong and psyched to do some hard moves. Anyway, I decided to go to the Frankenjura to attempt Jerry Moffatt's "Stonelove" 8b+. We arrived and went straight to the Eldorado sector, I warmed up on a cool 7c and then checked out the moves on Stonelove, had a few minutes rest and did it. I was really pleased because normally you here climbers talking about a hard swing move on a 2 finger pocket but I managed to static the move by getting my feet really high. I climbed lots of nice 7c's and a cool 8b called "Subway". I thought it was hard for 8b and I'm amazed that Simpson on-sighted it....incredible. Hope to go back next week to attempt some more classic Frankenjura routes.

12 Sep 2007


Went to Castelbianco in Italy sport climbing. An awesome area with big caves and long pumpy routes. I finally onsighted an 8a+...a really steep powerful thing with beautiful moves. Psyched for a trip to Frankenjura soon...a 3 hour drive up the motorway! Austria is awesome!

23 Aug 2007

Weekend Trip to Avers

Voigas V12

Headed to Averstal for the weekend and met Dave Mason there. The weather was pretty bad, so I was pleased to find some dry rock. I climbed Voigas v12 and tried New Baseline v14/15. The moves felt hard but I could do all but one where you have to bring your feet from the right to the left, it needs a little more work but I think I can climb this problem by the end of the season. It's annoying having two things (Mordor and New Baseline) that feel possible but need time....which one do you chose? I think Mordor is more important to me........

12 Aug 2007

Attempting Mordor

11 Aug 2007

Surf Trip

Back in Austria now from an attempted surf trip. We went to Tarifa but it was the wrong season for surf (like skiing in the Summer). But we had a go at Windsurfing...psyched to get really into this sport, boardsports seem to be my thing and I can't wait for the winter season to ditch my Atomic Skiis and buy a board, I'm thinking of getting a race board where speed is the main element.

Anyway, even more psyched to do Mordor now.

22 Jul 2007

Gondor 8c

Gondor is an amazing route. It is around 25m long and very sustained with hard moves from start to finish. I am so happy to have climbed this route becasue I didn't think I would be fit enough for such a hard sustained 8c, especially after all the bouldering comps. Now I am psyched to do the right hand variation called "Mordor" 9a. I hope I will be able to climb it this year with the start of Gondor fresh in my mind.

16 Jul 2007

British Bouldering Championships 2007

This was the best British comp I've been to. It was located in a big park in sheffield with loads of different activities going on. There were many climbers in the event and the boards were international style which made it fun to compete. I qualified in 3rd place behind Gaz and Steve. In the final I topped two problems and finished in 2nd position behind Gaz. Overall I was very pleased with the competition, however I didn't feel too strong in the final but I don't think i could of won the event as Gaz climbed super strong...respect. But now I am pleased to have a little break from the comps to get psyched out my tree for the world champs in Spain.

8 Jul 2007

Parisella's Cave

Went down to Parisella’s Cave today. It's been a long time since my last visit with Cassidy and was well impressed with the climbing there. I climbed "Trigger Cut" 2nd go and then got psyched for "Halfway House". I climbed it on my 5th go. I had a big rest and decided to try "Clyde". This is awesome and got close, falling matching out right. psyched to go back and finish it.

5 Jul 2007


Went to Slipstones today, felt very close to Cypher, I was sure that I was going to do it after my first go but then my skin started to roll and the holds didn't feel as good. I'm sure that my next visit will be successful.

3 Jul 2007

Boulder World Cups

Just got back to the Uk after competing in two boulder world cups, the first in Grindelwald and the second in Fierra. I made it through to the semi-finals in both events and finished 15th and 12th. psyched for some rock now. Staying in the UK for two weeks will hopefully climb on some limestone again before heading out to Austria to climb in Niederthai. So psyched to climb there again.