12 Dec 2008

Weekend on Swiss Granite

It has been snowing so much in Austria...great for skiing and training! Last weekend I finally had some time away from work and went to Switzerland! We arrived in Chironico and discovered that it had snowed there too, found Dave and Ellie buried in the snow and went climbing! Climbed Dr Pinch (V10) and La Boule (V11). La Boule is amazing, the 1st hard move involves holding a press with left hand and you have to hold your body in the correct position to make the next move, it took me a while to get the right body position and then I climbed the bloc...fantastic last move to jug!
I started the 2nd phase of my training plan this week..Kraft training! I had a session in the gym on Tuesday and felt so weak! Another week of just gym work and then I start specific power training for climbing in addition to the gym work. It feels really good to be following a training plan, I feel so much fitter already and looking foward to another trip to Switzerland later this month to shock the body!

21 Nov 2008

Endurance Training!

I started phase 1 of my training plan this week and it's hurting big time, it basically involves getting pumped over and over again and been amazed by how much stamina Babsy has. Going skiing on Sunday with the Austrian Climbing Team...it´s gonna be awesome because I think there will be some powder snow. Hopefully going to swiss next weekend to meet Dave Barrans, will do a few sessions on fingerboard before to make sure fingers are feeling strong.

18 Nov 2008

craziest project in Ötztal

After spending Saturday moving snow around we went to have a look HJ´s new area in Ötztal. I was well psyched because he was always talking about it his new project, a crazy roof crack, and I wanted to check it out. When we got to the crag I couldn´t believe it, the project follows one of the best lines I have ever seen. I climbed a few other routes and made the 2nd ascent of a 3-star 7c+ with an all-out dyno to the last hold...amazin. Then I had the privilege of having a look at the project on a rope. Wow, the route follows a small crack through a huge roof with some of the best moves I have ever made with a rope on. There´s one bit where you have to make a cross-over jump into a good hold and then turn your feet around so they´re facing outwards and make a few moves in this position....crazy. I hope HJ climbs the route soon because I am so psyched!

26 Oct 2008

Autumn Days

Went to Tumpen Bloc yesterday and climbed an amazing new problem 'Autumn Days' (V10). It starts standing and you pull off the ground on two crimps and place a right heel hook on a thin edge and slap all-out to a slopey edge, slap again and then rock over onto a slab. One of the best problems in Tumpen. Tumpen Bloc is getting some traffic now and it's great to see so many climbers enjoying the area.
I have been trad-climbing alot recently and went to a local crag today with Elias to climb some classic routes ohne bolts....It feels great to be getting used to placing gear and think we're going to climb a new route soon....it's going to be crazy. I think it's a good job that I'm not based in the UK at the moment...I KNOW I'd end up on some hard grit route. There is one route that I would love to climb: Equilibrium. Who knows...........................................

European Bouldering Championships

Location: Bercy, Paris
Position: =25th
Feeling: Satisfied
Due to a high number of competitors, the qualification round is now split, so there are 40 climbers in both groups climbing different problems. The top-10 from each group makes it into the semi-final. I finished 12th in my group missing the semi by an attempt. Ned climbed well in his group and made it into the semi-final where he continued to climb strong and finished 16th. The final was very inspiring.....I now know exactly what I'm missing and will get to work on it asap. A good finish to the season and I'm looking forward to next year. The 2009 World Cup is going to be mega...lots of travelling!

7 Oct 2008

Tao 8c

On saturday morning I looked out my window and snow greeted me....the thought of getting back on this beautiful route this year vanished. I ended up in the bouldering wall training with Luki und Heiko and we made some amazing blocs with loads of crazy moves, Luki climbed one of the craziest dynos I have ever seen...to put it bluntly he is an absolute beast! Sunday arrived and I looked out at snow covered mountains and a crystal clear blue sky...I was psyched!

Piburger is another crag you can find in Oetztal. It's located above a beautiful lake surrounded by snow peaked mountains. The routes are steep and involve athletic moves between amazing granite holds. Tao starts on this little ledge high above the trees with some really aggressive shouldery moves on bad footholds, it then leads into continuous technical climbing with some really long moves on goodish holds to finish. The route is a proper PE type route and I'm well happy to have made the 5th ascent.
Pic: Kili climbing at Piburger (H.Wilhelm)

1 Sep 2008

Zillertal ho

Had a cool weekend in Zillertal bouldering. On Sat we drove to magic places and climbed some nice classics. I really wanted to try the Riddler but the river was really high and couldn't be bothered getting my feet wet. Next stop was Wehr where I climbed Pitbull- an amazing move with a nasty crimp. On Sunday we went into the zillergrund wald and messed around checking out some nice blocs. It was nice bouldering again but seem to be more psyched for routes at the moment. I'm trying this amazing 8c above a beautiful lake. The route is perfect. Looking forward to gettin back on it this week. psyched!

4 Aug 2008

Blasius 8b+

I climbed a really cool route yesterday at a crag pretty close to Imst. The route is called Balsius (8b+) and involves some powerful moves on undercuts with a tricky top section. Here is a link to a video of me trying the route last Sunday made by my good friend Elias:

25 Jul 2008

UK Trip

Back in Austria after visiting the UK for the BBC. I was so psyched for some classic lines on limestone but the weather was pretty bad leaving some of the crags wet. However I did climb some great routes including Ben Moon's classic 'Zeke the Freak' 8b (pic). On Sunday we went to Chee Dale and I climbed 'Entree' 8a and then I decided to have a go at the 8b to the right...the rock is perfect but I split a tip on the first move...putting a stop to my attempts. Well psyched to do it in Sep when return for the British Team training day.

14 Jul 2008

British Bouldering Championships'08

What an event! The 2008 British Bouldering Championships was a mega success. The event was so much bigger and better than last year. I was amazed by how many strong climbers turned up to compete from around the UK. The qualification round went well and I felt proud to get into the final. During the break before the final I chilled out in the Sun catching up with friends, which was great. The girl's final was fantastic to watch and it's good to see some new climbers on the scene. The guy's final was one of the best ever. The final bloc would decide who would get the title between Dave, Ned and me. Dave was up 1st and missed the crucial beta on the final move and fell, then it was my turn and I missed the beta.......Ned's turn; on his 1st attempt he missed the beta and I thought I'd won but then on his 2nd attempt he climbed the boulder perfectly topping out and winning the title. I finished 2nd and Dave 3rd, complete results available at the BMC website.

So perfect venue, massive crowd, lots of respect for the comp.....it must be time to hold a round of the Bouldering World Cup at the Cliffhanger event.

6 Jul 2008

Frodo's Journey 8b+

I climbed a cool link today at Niederthai that starts up Gondor and after the slopey ledge goes out right to join Waldlaeufer via a really powerful cross-move. I named it "Frodo's Journey" and graded it solid Fr8b+.

2 Jul 2008

When will the journey end?

I've spent 14 days on Mordor so far and it's getting a little closer everyday. I've never had to dedicate myself to a route like this. At the moment I'm getting through the 1st crux slap and falling off the next, but on Sunday I found a bit of beta that should help on this move. So now I'm just waiting for the right conditions to go back to Niederthai and attempt it again because the weather is pretty strange here at the moment. I am enjoying the journey but looking forward to having a rest when it's complete and just climbing lots of routes and blocs. I hope to climb the route before visiting the UK next week.

23 Jun 2008

Magic Wood

Chickenhead 8A (Flash)

Riverbed 8B
Had 2 days in Averstal with Sabby. 1st day went to Chickenhead with Ned, Tom, Dave and Tony and managed to flash it. After played on Riverbed and got it wired. 2nd day woke up super early to avoid sun and climbed Riverbed 1st go...perfect.

15 Jun 2008

Oetztal is wet!

The weather is so bad at the moment in Oetztal. I decided to leave Mordor today due to my back and poor conditions and have a look at a hidden sector in Niederthai. The sector is located in the woods behind the main areas of Niederthai and you end up going down this big hole type thing before reaching the routes...cool. The sector has three routes 6c, 8b, 7c and they were first climbed by Markus Haid sometime ago. I cleaned up the 8b and dried some holds and I was amazed. The holds are perfect consisting of crimps and slopers with perfect flowing moves between them. I was really pleased to climb the route today but would of been best to have rested my back.

Fierra Bouldering World Cup

Two years ago I injured my back in Fierra at the Wc and it happened again this year. I'd warmed up for the quali really well and felt ready. I flashed the 1st bloc and then messed up the 2nd bloc, sat down for the 5min rest period and when I put my shoes on I felt something go in my back. I sarted to panic because I couldn't breathe deep and rotate to the right without lots of pain. I decided to just carry on and see if it got better. It didn't and I was unable to give 100% on the remaining blocs. I finished 28th climbing just 2 problems. I was very dissapointed because the blocs were perfect for me-crimpy and basic. My back is still painful but starting to ease. I have had back problems for a long time now and I am really lazy when it comes to back exercises but this has shown me just how important it is to train your whole body. The next WC is in 3 weeks so hopefully I'll be ready for it.

7 Jun 2008

Grindelwald Bouldering WC

The world cup in Grindelwald went well. On friday I qualified in 3rd place but dropped to 16th in the semi-final. Dave Barrans should of been in the semi too but another climber found a way around the hardest boulder (didn't get done the original way) using holds from the girl's bloc and so he ended up in 21st. I have something to work on before the next comp in Fierra; flexibility.

2 Jun 2008

Tumpen Bloc Topo

There is a now a topo for Tumpen Bloc available at http://www.oetztalclimbing.com/

Map of Tumpen Bloc

18 May 2008

Paul's Kotz-Attacke 8a+ (Heiko Wilhelm)
I'd heard from some local climbers that Markus Haid had climbed a really good new route at a crag just 5mins down the road. The crag, Nosslach, is amazing with so many 3star routes in the 7th grade. I climbed a few of these routes and decided to give the new route a go. It involves an amazing overhang with some athletic moves on crimps....perfect. I had a quick go onsight but it didn't work and climbed it 2nd go. I thought the route was around the Fr8a+ grade but Markus had given the route Fr8b and other people agreed with 8b. Keine Ahnung.

11 May 2008

Quick Update

Just had 2 days on Mordor and it's feeling much better this year. The crux seems to feel much easier because i'm putting in a small drop knee before making the move meaning my body is closer to the wall. I just need to work away and hopefully i'll climb it soon. Before trying Mordor today I climbed 'Oman Calling' (8b) 2nd go which was nice because it's really technical.

6 May 2008

Frankenjura Trip

Just got back form a great trip to frankenjura with my Dad, it was great to climb with him again. He is inspirational and it's funny to watch the reactions of younger climbers when a 59 year old burns them off!!! Here's what I did:

Day 1:
Went to Zwergenschloss and climbed PlanB (8b) and the Angry Inch (8b+). I'd just worked the crux of the Angry Inch and not bothered looking at the top pumpy section, so had to onsight that section...a tense moment. I asked some guys for the beta on Powerplay and I'm psyched to give it a go next time.

Went to Puettlacher Wand and climbed a great 7c with a really powerful move at the top. I was psyched to have a go at killer (8b) at Schuettersmuehler Wand. Walked up and it was in the Sun but tied on anyway and had a few goes. I nearly climbed the route on my 3rd go but fell just after the crux (big fall!) and decided to leave it for the next morning when it would be cooler.

Woke up really early and went to a crag to warm-up. Felt really good and headed for Killer and climbed the route 1st go....fantastic route with typical Frankenjura pockets. After went on the Pottensteiner tobogan..well good. Went to Grossweinsteiner wand and flashed a classic jura route Sautanz (7b+). I really wanted to try Unplugged but couldn't find the crag and ended up on the Burn 4U sector. Had a look at Burn 4U but couldn't work out which way to go on the crux. I didn't know at the time that the route to the right was Corona (9a+) and thought that Burn 4U goes up right and back left so ended up doing some of the crux of Corona. Def gonna have a go at Burn 4U again.

Went to Wiessenstein and met Patxi warming up for Action. Climbed 4 routes upto 7c and then left for Austria. I'd love to try Action but nervous because I don't want to bugger my fingers up. Think I'll do some training and have a look netx time.

1 May 2008

13 Apr 2008

Brandy Tarte 8c+

I woke up this morning and looked out the window...finally good weather! We drove to Niederthai and I warmed-up in the sun. Walked up to Brandy Tarte in the snow and on my 2nd attempt today I climbed the route. It's a fantastic route, really steep and powerful. Very typical of Niederthai the route is situated in a beautiful location and it felt great when I clipped the top and got lowered off in amongst the trees with the valley of Oetztal behind me. The route was first climbed by Markus Haid and graded "Hard" 8c. My ascent was the 5th behind Markus, Heiko, Kilian and Luki. The route feels more like 8c+ because when i compare it to the other 8c's i've climbed it feels considerably harder. I've chatted to heiko and luki and they agree. After i climbed brandy I went down to the steep sector and climbed some more routes in the sun.

6 Apr 2008


I entered the KitzRock Regional Event in Kitzbuehl on friday and Saturday. The qualification went very well and I qualified in 3rd place behind Marcus Hoppe and Kili. In the semi-final I felt very strong but had some bad luck on the first boulder popping off with my hand on the final hold a few times. The comp was good practice but I felt a little uncomfortable in the comp situation again. Last season I entered many local bouldering comps to break the nerves, whereas this year I've had no practice and i wasn't flowing. I finished 9th and missed the final by an attempt. When you have a bad result you sometimes question whether comps are worth the hassle but they are because one day you could have luck on your side and climb fantastically and you will never forget the feeling of the crowd behind you......hope I'm feeling it in Hall.

25 Mar 2008

Two Days in Chironico

The weather is really bad in Austria at the moment i.e. lots of snow, so we decided to have a quick two days in Chironico. We arrived at around 12ish on Sunday and went straight to Team Work (8A). Sabby was psyched for the boulder and she climbed it pretty fast. It involves some good moves on nice crimps and some cool moves to top out. I then wanted to try the Great Shark Hunt (8A+). When I found the boulder I was amazed by the steepness and how good the holds were. I messed up the move to the sharp undercut a few times through trying to static it and then wimped out slapping for the sloper on the edge but on my 5th go i climbed the bloc...such a satisfying bloc but I don't think it's 8B because the holds are just too good.

The Great Shark Hunt

My skin was pretty bad after Sunday but I was psyched on Monday to look at the top area of Chironico. Warmed up and climbed Les Doigts Vert (7c+) and flashed Le Pilier (soft8A). Back in Austria now and it's totally white. I have a competition in Kitzbuhl next weekend, nervous but It's good prep for the World Cups.

sabby getting psyched

1 Mar 2008

I went to Tumpen the other day with Sabby and found a wall that had a few nice blocs on it (already chalked and cleaned). I climbed the middle bloc (pic above) at around v7 and then had a quick go at the problem to the right...well hard. It involves a really hard move rocking over onto the wall. I don't think that this bloc has been climbed...but who knows??? Heading to Zillertal soon to try and climb the Incubator.

20 Feb 2008

UK Trip

Just got from England and had a brilliant but short trip. On Friday we went to Stanage and the conditions were amazing and I was loving climbing on the Grit. I warmed-up and climbed the Joker V11. I've wanted to do the Joker for ages but have never found the right conditions. It's really nice when you catch the last sloper perfectly and then just swing to the jug...classic problem...well pleased. On Saturday I went to the Climbing Works for Team Training and had a really good training day but it was so cold in the Works. We spent Sunday in Manchester and back to Stanage on Monday. It was really warm on Monday ad impossible to climb hard in the Sun, But climbed Not to be Taken Away and Sabby climbed Brad Pitt!

5 Feb 2008

UK Trip Booked

The weather is perfect here at the moment. Last week I went to Niederthai and attempted 'Brandy Tarte' Fr8c, I quickly got all the moves done and climbed it in two halves. I had already tried the route 2 years ago but couldn't do the crux involving a crazy lock to a 3-finger pinch and a powerful move to a flat hold. It snowed last night, so the route could be wet now, but will hopefully try it on Thursday if the sun keeps shining...not long before Mordor is ready!! Feeling strong. Heading back to the Uk later this month..will probably try the Ace or Voyager sit. Hope the weather will be good!?!

10 Jan 2008

Training and skiing

I have just 2 more weeks of my system training..it's going very well, but I'm looking forward to starting the next period of my training which will involve campus board, fingerboarding and hard boulders. On a skiing front, it hasn't snowed here for a few weeks....but we managed to go on an incredible ski tour. It took around 4 hours of climbing until we were on top of the mountain "High Wasserfall" Oetztaler Alpen. The view was incredible and the ski down was amazing with perfect powder snow. Hope it snows soon.....