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Harry Edwards, 12, Climbs Southern Smoke (5.14c)

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Harry Edwards on Southern Smoke (5.14c). Photo courtesy edwardsfamilyclimbers.com

5/1/13 – Twelve-year-old Harry Edwards has climbed Southern Smoke (5.14c), Red River Gorge, Kentucky.

Last fall, Edwards, who lives in Holbrook, Arizona, was on a family trip to the Red, where he ticked off numerous 5.14s, 5.13s, and onsights: God’s Own Stone (5.14a), Omaha Beach (5.14a), Ultra Perm (5.13d), Flour Power (5.13b, OS), Dirty Smelly Hippie (5.13b, OS), and more. On his family’s blog, his dad, Rob, says, “Southern Smoke had taken a lot of work on Harry’s part, and had entailed two low-percentage crux moves off horrible edges which taller climbers bypass.”

Located at the Bob Marley Crag in the Pendergrass-Murray Recreational Preserve, this 90-foot “ultimate stamina route… up the relentlessly overhanging face,” as described in Red River Gorge South: A Rock Climbing Guidebook to Kentucky’s Red River Gorge, has seen numerous ascents since Joe Kinder established it in November 2008, including ascents by youngsters Ashima Shiraishi (11 years old) and Kai Lightner (13 years old).

Date of ascent: April 20, 2013

Sources: edwardsfamilyclimbers.com; 8a.nu