Fall 2012 Bouldering Round-up

11/2/12 - With 5.14d onsights and redpoints flooding out of the Red River Gorge, bouldering news has been slightly overshadowed.

Not surprisingly, Colorado has seen a handful of noteworthy ascents recently. In September, Daniel Woods made the first ascent of White Noise (V15) in Wild Basin, one of Rocky Mountain National Park's newest bouldering areas. White Noise has two dozen moves of "power endurance climbing," according to Woods. "The purest traverse that I have seen or done with a scary finish," he said. "There is no other way to go up on the boulder besides traversing from one arete to another. Perfect holds and moves."

Matty Hong made quick work of the second ascent, followed shortly by Dave Graham, both of whom confirmed the V15 grade. Hong also completed Warrior Up (V15) at Lincoln Lake, and grabbed the second ascent of Woods' Mind To Motion (V14) in RMNP. Hong is currently working the unrepeated Dave Graham problem, The Grey (V14) in Wild Basin. On his 8a.nu scorecard, Graham calls The Grey "one of the best climbs I have done in the United States."

For the past several months, Carlo Traversi and Paul Robinson have been traveling around the world. Robinson climbed Entlinge (V14/15), a Fred Nicole problem in Murgtal, Switzerland, that Woods flashed in 2011. Traversi, also in Switzerland, has managed to accumulate quite the ticklist: Practice Of The Wild (V15), a third ascent of In Search of Time Lost (V15), Mystic Stylez (V14), New Base Line (V14), Vecchio Leone (V13), One Summer In Paradise (V13), Dark Sakai (V12), and Nothing Changes (V11).

Traversi on his ascent of In Search of Time Lost (V15). Photo by Mary Mecklenburg

Climbing caught up with Traversi, who shared a few words about his progression in bouldering.

"This last May, while staring long and hard into the unforgiving eyes of fear and doubt, I came to the conclusion that the only way I was going to live up to my potential as a rock climber was to quit my job and pursue the lifestyle full-time. I realized that the only way I was going to be able to respect myself moving forward was to put everything I had into the sport that has captured my attention for the last 10 years. It was a difficult, albeit exciting, transition. Five months later,  I have now climbed in South Africa, Norway, France, Sweden, Germany, and Switzerland. I'm training less and climbing much more on a greater variety of problems and rock than ever before. My body doesn't necessarily feel stronger, but I feel like all the unnecessary has been stripped away... And my hands and fingers feel stronger and healthier than ever. As for the mental, I've begun to embrace everyday as a learning experience, free from expectations and pressures. The rock is stronger than you so don't pull against it, pull with it.

"In regards to Switzerland, and why I'm climbing well here, I think it's mostly a timing thing.  Everything is just clicking right now.  I'm riding an upward bend in the cycle.  It will go down and that will be ok too.

"My goal for these two months in Switzerland was to climb the hardest boulders here, and then make time to establish some of my own. That's how we progress in our constant pursuit of becoming a 'master' of bouldering. Find the bar, and then raise it. Repeating hard climbs and establishing hard climbs are equally important. They go hand in hand. So far, I've managed to succeed fairly well at the first part, now I'm interested in the other.

Source: 8a.nu, Carlo Traversi


Previous Comments

Cb is just angry that his 5.11b project still thwarts him, four years later. He couldn't boulder a legit V3 in a gym.

Mbsst26 - 12/23/2012 4:41:27

Bouldering, to me, is climbing. I live in the Black Hills of South Dakota, and although our granite routes are some of the best, our limestone will get you pumped and shut you down, nothing compares to our granite bouldering. To be able to solve and conqure a slab that has non existent holds is one of the best feelings ever. To wrestle down a rock that has given you problems time and time again is overwhelming and almost unbelievable when achieved. Bouldering to me is spiritual, it is my religion. To say it is equivilant to masturbation is purely an insult.

al - 11/14/2012 8:58:26

That comment is almost too asinine to respond to. Bouldering is JUST as much a part of climbing as any other discipline. The moves you find on a V14/15 boulder problem are some of the most difficult movements a human body has ever performed. You could not say the same of other disciplines. Just as sport, trad, mountaineering, or aid climbing has its place, so does bouldering.

Connor Magee - 11/05/2012 1:07:53

"Bouldering is the skateboarding of the climbing world. 1 part boredom & 1 part masturbation. Fun for the person doing it, but thats about it." Such a ridiculous comment...bouldering is a challenging and physically demanding branch of climbing and involves a high degree of creativity in terms of establishing and solving problems. To call it masturbation is to miss the point, it's not about showing off how strong you are, at least not for most people. It's about finding interesting, unique, and difficult sequences and figuring out how you can best use your body to find a way through them.

Liam - 11/04/2012 11:16:30

"fun for the person doing it." What else do you need?

er - 11/02/2012 4:26:49

Bouldering is the skateboarding of the climbing world. 1 part boredom & 1 part masturbation. Fun for the person doing it, but thats about it.

cb - 11/02/2012 3:02:53