The Guatemalan – Gabriel Moch’s North American Boulderering Journey
At 23 years old Gabriel Moch has reached an impressive level as the second Latin American climber to send The Mandala (V12) at the Buttermilk Boulders, near Bishop California (the first was Eduardo Carlvalho who currently lives in Bishop, CA).
Moch was born in Guatemala, raised in Brazil and began climbing at the age of ripe age 16. After only two years on the rock he sent Morfina (5.13a) at Cerra do Cipo, in Brazil and helped develop a bouldering area near Sao Paulo called Valinhos with over 300 problems varying from V0-V10 where he made the first ascent of many of them.
In 2007 he traveled to the US for eight months eventually settling in Mexico with his family where he began developing some blocs 30 minutes from his home near Toluca at an area called Salazar.
“A number of other climbers had visited Salazar before I did but they didn’t put much effort into looking around. I dedicated maybe a year into opening about 20 interesting problems worth mentioning. There isn’t much rock but what’s there is high quality.” Says Moch of Mexico’s Salazar boulders which lie several hours west of the gigantic Mexico City.
Moch’s Toluca, Mexico Dyno on YouTube.com
Moch continuted, “My favorite there is a really big dyno I sent which I think is like 2.10 meters or 6.8 feet (I’m 6 foot 2 inches tall) but we actually believe it’s bigger than that! There have been no repeats yet and I did Fred Nicole’s Wonder Dyno (V10) at Hueco Tanks during my last visit and I didn’t find it as long or as hard as the one in Toluca.”
For the last year Moch has been road tripping throughout the US and Canada in a van, (currently enjoying the boulders of Squamish, BC) and plans to stay up north until the cooler temperatures force him further south.
Bouldering is Moch’s forte and he loves it more than anything in the world. So far his favorite places to climb are Squamish, BC – for lush green forests; Hueco Tanks, TX – for the amazing gymnastic climbing; Rocky Mountain National Park, CO – for the mountain scenery; Joe’s Valley, UT – for the peacefulness and the texture; Bishop, CA – for the quality problems; and Priest Draw, AZ – for the crazy limestone pocketed roofs.
“I think the best thing about climbing in North America is the easy access and the wealth of information about all the different places. The security and beauty found in the parks and in the backcountry here is priceless,” says Moch.
“It’s really different to climb in areas were other people have been climbing for years now, which is very different from a place like Mexico, where you end up putting more time into finding the place, opening new lines, cleaning and all the things that developing takes, which I love, but it’s just really different from a place like Hueco were you have thousands of problems ready to just go and climb.”
Recent Ticks on his current North American road trip include:
- The Mandala V12 – Bishop, California
- Center Direct V11 – (After a hold broke) Bishop, California
- Stars and Stripes V11? – (flash) Lower Chaos, RMNP, Colorado
- Return of the Jedi V10 – (4th go) Big Bend Boulders, Moab, Utah
- No Troblems V10 – Squamish BC, Canada
- Fern Roof V10 – Hueco Tanks, Texas
- Acid Wash V10 – (3rd go) Bishop, California
- Zen Flute V10 – Bishop California Buttermilks
- Wonder Dyno V10 – Hueco Tanks Texas
- Choir Boys V9 – Hueco Tanks, Texas
Gabriel Moch is supported by Flashed Climbing (www.flashed.com)