New Route Takes Massive Effort—By Alex Megos Standards

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Alexander Megos on Geocache (5.14d?) in Germany's Frankenjura. Photo by Claudia Ziegler/Claudiaziegler.com.

Alexander Megos on Geocache (5.14d?) in Germany's Frankenjura. Photo by Claudia Ziegler/Claudiaziegler.com.

9/12/14 - Alexander Megos has done the first ascent of an open project called Geocache in the Frankenjura after six days of effort and more than 40 attempts. This is the most time the young German climber has ever spent on a project—he's most famous for speedy ascents like Realization (5.15a, third redpoint burn) and Estado Critico (the world's first 5.14d onsight).

Yet despite his relatively massive effort to send Geocache, Megos has tentatively rated it 9a (5.14d). "I thought it would go pretty quickly, in about three or four attempts, but things turned out somewhat differently," Megos said. "It's got one really strange move from which I kept falling off. I am convinced that it's not super hard. I think if you are 3 centimeters taller it will feel easy...maybe. So let's just say 9a?, with the question mark."

Further punctuating the grading difficulty, Megos warmed down after his first ascent of Geocache by repeating Action Directe (5.14d), his fourth time doing the route, and also climbing Sundance Kid, a formerly 8c route that's now given 9a thanks to a broken hold. That's three 5.14d routes in a day...or perhaps two 5.14d routes and one that's a bit harder!

Geocache is located in the Vogelherd Grotte cave, a popular destination for hikers and geocachers.

Date of ascents: September 10, 2014

Sources: Alexander Megos, Photo: Claudia Ziegler