Hot Action on Spanish Crags

Chris Sharma onsighting Humildes pa Casa (5.14b) at Oliana, Spain, a route featuring a 25-meter tufa. © Pete O’Donovan

The world’s strongest climbers have lit up the crags of northeastern Spain this week, with Chris Sharma and Ramón Julián Puigblanque both in superb form. After working for most of Saturday on a 9b (5.15b) project at Oliana, Sharma warmed down by onsighting the 40-meter route Paper Mullat (5.14a/b). The next day, Sharma warmed up quickly and then onsighted the 45-meter Humildes pa Casa (5.14b). Still hungry, he dispatched the first ascent of Selecció Natural Extension(5.14d) on Monday before deciding to take a rest day.

Meanwhile, Ramón Julián focused on a stunning series of redpoints and first ascents. In four days, between December and December 9, he completed six 5.14b or harder routes, including two 5.14d routes in the same day. Here’s a breakdown:

  • December 5: First ascent of a 5.14b link-up at Sant Miquel del Fai

  • December 6: First ascent of Llamps i Trons (hard 5.14c) at Margalef

  • December 8: First ascent of a 5.14c direct start to Open Your Mind (5.14c) at Santa Linya, creating a 5.15a new route; repeat of Koala Mental (5.14b)

  • December 9: Repeat of La Novena Enmienda (5.14d/15a) and the second pitch of Fabelita (5.14d), Santa Linya

Dates of Ascents: December 5–9, 2008,,,

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