Vasya Vorotnikov Interview: China Glide (5.14d)

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Vasya Vorotnikov attempting Jaws II. Photo by Kurt Oian

Vasya Vorotnikov Interview: China Glide (5.14d)

10/13/10 - On October 9, Vasya Vorotnikov nabbed the third ascent of China Glide (5.14d) at Rumney's Waimea Wall. This route starts on China Beach (5.14b) and links into the end crux of Livin' Astro (5.14c). "China Glide does the hardest part of both these climbs," the University of Delaware graduate student says. "It's 5.13b/c into V8, followed by a V9ish traverse, a good rest, and another V9 (the crux of Livin' Astro)." Vorotnikov climbed both routes several years ago, and spent about five days total on China Glide.

Pete Kamitses FA'd China Glide in June 2008, and Mike Foley seconded earlier this year. Other notable sends by Vorotnikov include the FA of Jaws II (5.15a) at Rumney in 2007, which Daniel Woods climbed October 5.

Climbing caught up with Vorotnikov after his send.

What were your expectations of climbing China Glide? After doing Jaws II, I didn't have too many climbs left at Rumney, and getting on China Glide basically meant getting in better shape. I put a little more pressure on myself and got a little more psyched the weekend of the send, so you could say I expected to try harder than usual and finish it up.

What drew you to the route? I'm not a huge link-up fan, but Rumney is my old home crag, and getting on another awesome, hard climb was inevitable even if it was a link-up. It was probably the difficulty that attracted me, the challenge of doing something near my limit.

What was your inspiration?I would say Daniel [Woods] sending Jaws II made me want to try something that hard again. I've been psyched on all these new climbs at the New, but was going up to Rumney that weekend, and figured I'd get on China Glide.

What was the hardest section for you? Since I've done both China Beach and Livin' Astro, the toughest was the link traverse in between. That traverse has a really small crimp on it. 

Does China Glide fit your style of climbing?I grew up climbing in Rumney, but I never thought China Beach fit my style with its crazy upside-down layback crack. But in the perfect October weather, anything up at Rumney could turn into "my style."

China Glide has only seen three ascents—how does it feel to have the third? Feels great. It's like gambling: you win some, then you want to win more and more... I just hope that winning streak ain't over, and I'll keep doing more and more routes.

Any other big projects?I have my eyes on the New River Gorge. There is so much rock down there that has been bolted but still remains to be climbed! There are at least five unestablished 5.14c/d/15a routes that I've highlighted in Mike Williams' new guidebook, and I'm pretty sure the list doesn't end there...

Date of ascent: October 9, 2010

Source: Vasya Vorotnikov

Below is Mike Foley climbing Livin' Astroglide (5.14+), which climbs most of Livin' Astro (5.14c) and traverses left into China Beach (5.14b).

Livin' AstroGlide (5.14c/d) from David Wetmore on Vimeo.