5.14 Crack Redpointed Again


Sylvain “Sly” Masse has redpointed La Zébrée, the 5.14a crack climb at Mont King in Québec. Masse had been working on the 80-foot, severely overhanging finger and hand crack for two years. For his redpoint, he placed all of his gear on the lead, during his second attempt of the day.

Masse is the second climber to redpoint the route placing all of the gear. In May, Jean-Pierre Ouellet made the first redpoint ascent; Jeff Beaulieu made the route’s first free ascent, with most of the gear preplaced, in the fall of 2004. Strangely, Ouellet ended up belaying both the first and third free ascents of La Zébrée, as well as putting in countless hours on his own free effort. “Maybe I should get a life,” he said.

Ouellet said Masse, who owns a pool-maintenance company in Québec and is in his mid-30s, is a “really low-profile climber” but has done many hard cracks all over the continent. He added, “What I can tell you is that he’s fucking fit. One-arm pull-ups are not a problem, and one-arm front levers are not a problem either.”

Date of Ascent: August 5, 2007

Sources: Jean-Pierre Ouellet, www.gripped.com, www.escaladequebec.com, climbing.local

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