Monique Forestier Climbs Fish Eye (5.14b)

4/4/12 – After 20 days of work, Australian Monique Forestier has climbed Fish Eye (5.14b) in Oliana, Spain.

The 165-foot, overhanging route ascends the center of the cliff, with the first crux appearing after 90 feet: 13 moves of “underclings, long spans, and a deadpoint throw to reach the rail, where you need to work hard to gain a rest if you’re to get anything back,” Forestier blogged. Sustained climbing leads to a final rest, right before the second crux of 14 hard moves to the anchors. Forestier spent some time on the route last year and reached her highpoint, the second crux, after four days of work this year.

Forestier put in seven solid attempts before frustration caused her to walk away for a few days. When she came back, “The eighth go up at the last crux went perfectly,” she said. “I adjusted my foot placement only slightly (as planned), drilled into the shallow pocket, grew three inches, crushed the next crimp, squeezed the life out of the right pinch, and continued to the top in what seemed like slow motion. Eventually, my day had come. Wow. What a journey.” Read her full write-up here.

In 2003, Forestier became the first Australian woman to climb Australian grades 31 and 32, with Mission to Mars (5.13d) and Lactic Spastic (5.14a), both at the Blue Mountains near Sydney.

Chris Sharma bolted and climbed Fish Eye in 2009, and Daila Ojeda made the first female ascent in February 2010. It has seen repeats by female climbers Maria Davies Sandbu, Caroline Ciavaldini, and Nina Caprez.

Date of ascent: March 2012