Category Archives: Climbing News

Coxsey Becomes 3rd Woman to Send V14/8B+

"Psyched doesn't come close," says Coxsey of her first 8B+/V14. (Photo credit: Shauna's instagram).

“Psyched doesn’t come close,” says Coxsey of her first 8B+/V14.

In the last two weeks, Shauna Coxsey, took silver in the IFSC Bouldering World Cup, sent her second 8B at Magic Wood in Switzerland, and on July 12th became the third woman in the world to send 8B+! According to Shauna’s instagram, she sent New Base Line (V14/8B+) at Magic Wood, a line originally put up by Bernd Zangerl. “Psyched doesn’t come close,” said Coxsey of her send. Dave MacLeod calls New Base Line “one of the most iconic hard problems on the planet.” Just last week we reported on the second woman/girl to take down V14/8B+, Ashima Shirashi’s send of Golden Shadow. Clearly there’s nothing like seeing a 13-year old send 8B+ to inspire you to take down your own project. Whether Ashima factored into Shauna’s send or not, we’ve got mad respect for the 21-year-old British climber. It is interesting to note that Shauna’s first V13/8B, One Summer in Paradise, was Ashima’s 2nd V13/8B. For us everyday climbers, it is inspiring to see top level female climbers pushing, inspiring, and motivating one another to narrow the gap between female and male climbers. You go girls! ;)

Climb on! ~Cate

Information thanks to Shauna Coxsey’s blog,  Dave MacLeod’s blogPlanet Mountain, and Rock and Ice. (Photo credit: Shauna’s instagram)

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Ashima Becomes 2nd Female Ever to Send V14

Ashima on Golden Shadow, V14 (Photo from Ashima's Instragram)

Ashima on Golden Shadow (V14) in Rocklands, South Africa (Photo from Ashima’s Instagram)

About two years ago 34-year-old Tomoko Ogawa broke the female V14 barrier with her send of Catharsis in Shiobara, Japan, and now, at just 13 years old, Ashima Shiraishi has become the second woman (well, girl really) to climb the grade. On her Instagram she says, “I still can’t believe I did this! I sent my project Golden Shadow 8b+ (V14) My first V14!” Ladies like Shauna Coxsey, Alex Puccio, and Anna Stöhr have all been ticking off V13s lately, and I’m sure with a little inspiration from the youngsters we’re sure to start seeing these veteran climbers pushing their limits ever further. Ashima, you never cease to amaze us. Congrats on this amazing accomplishment and thank you for inspiring us to climb hard!

Climb on!
Mary

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The Rise of Miho Nonaka

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Nonaka making moves during the Innsbruck, Austria leg of the 2014 IFSC World Cup.

This month, as you know from last week, we are crushing hard on all-around-badass, and winner of this year’s Bouldering World Cup, Akiyo Noguchi. But it was brought to our attention that there was another untold story from this year’s World Cup, a story so remarkable that we would be remiss not to tell it here. Today, guest contributor John Burgman brings us the story of 17-year-old dark horse Miho Nonaka.

If the 2014 IFSC Bouldering World Cup season taught us anything, it was that Japan’s Akiyo Noguchi has firmly cemented herself among the greatest competitive boulderers of our time. Aside from her physical mastery, Noguchi climbs with a degree of fluidity—a sort of natural technical polish—that harkens back to bouldering pioneer John Gill’s interest in style in a successful send. Noguchi deserves all of the attention and accolades that she is currently receiving, including headlines in just about every major world climbing news publication. But amid the buzz over Noguchi’s World Cup season, something is slipping under the radar: the remarkable effort of Noguchi’s teammate, Miho Nonaka.

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Brooke Raboutou Sends Her First V13

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Brooke climbing Fragile Steps, V13

13-year-old Boulderite, Brooke Raboutou, has sent her first V13, Fragile Steps, in Rocklands, South Africa. With this send she joins a small group of females who have conquered the V13 grade, including her peer, Ashima Shiraishi, who climbed Fragile Steps a few years ago. On Brooke’s Facebook page she says she was, “Happy to have had the help from my brother Shawn Raboutou and encouragement from my mother.” Brooke’s mom, Robyn Erbesfield-Raboutou, was not only the third woman ever to send 5.14, but is also Brooke’s mentor and coach. For more on this incredible mother daughter duo check out our interview with Brooke and Robyn. Congrats Brooke – we can’t wait to see what you do next!

Climb on!
-Mary

(Info and Photo: Brooke’s Facebook page)

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Meagan Martin Crushes Qualifying Round of American Ninja Warrior

Powerhouse boulderer and former Division 1 pole vaulter, Meagan Martin, used her incredible strength and speed on last night’s episode of American Ninja Warrior to become one of just three women to ever complete the show’s famed “Warped Wall”. The competition consists of qualifying and final rounds in five cities across the US. Competitors who complete the finals course in their city go on to compete in national finals for a chance to win $500,000! Along with two other women, Meagan has made it through qualifiers and is moving on to finals, which will air later this summer. Meagan was our very first Girl Crush of the Month and contributed amazing insight to our piece Climbing and Intimidation, so it’s no secret that we are seriously rooting for her! Check out the video above to see her qualifying run, filled with spirited moments and a nail-biting finish. Congrats Meagan – we’ll definitely be following you on ANW!

Climb on!
Mary

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Nina Caprez Earns 5.14c First Female Ascent

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Just a few days ago Paige Claassen made the first female ascent (FFA) of Just Do It (5.14c/8c+) at Smith Rocks and now hot on her heels is Nina Caprez with the FFA of Hélix au pays des merveilles (5.14c/8c+) in Montpellier, France. Before her, only two men, Gérome Pouvreau and Cédric Lachat, had sent Hélix. On the Arc’teryx blog Nina explains how she used “lady-beta” to her advantage: “I quickly found some good beta to make the route possible for me. I escaped the big and powerful moves of the guys and I crimped some foot holds instead!” This climb also marked Nina’s first 5.14c! Of her experience she goes on to say, “My mind was completely open, free and I was full of good energy. I don’t know how long this will continue, but I have the impression that I’m surfing on a wave…Life is great!” Indeed it is. Congrats Nina!

Climb on!
Mary

Info and Photo Credit: blog.arcteryx.com

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First Female Ascent of 5.14c for Claassen

Just Do It (5.14c/8c+) at Smith. Photo credit: Paige Claassen's Instagram)

Just Do It (5.14c/8c+) at Smith. (Photo credit: Paige Claassen’s Instagram)

Over the last year Paige Claassen has traveled the world on her Lead Now Tour, sending hard left and right, while also bringing awareness and raising money for local non-profits that empower women and children. It appears that climbing some of the toughest routes around the world for nearly a year gets you strong. Putting that strength to the test, 22-year-old Paige tackled and sent Just Do It (5.14c/8c+) at Smith Rocks. She is the first female ascent of the route. It should be noted that at the time this route was established by Jean-Baptiste Tribout in 1992, 5.15/9a+ did not exist. It looks like we may have a first female ascent of 5.15/9a+ any day now…and Paige just might be the lady to do it! Congrats Paige! Keep on inspiring!

Climb on! ~Cate

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Two 5.14b/8c’s for Evgeniya Malamid

In April 2013 Russian climber, Evgeniya Malamid, on-sighted Los Humildes pa Casa (5.14a/8b+) in Oliana, and  now a year later, she’s gone back to Spain for more. This time she sent two 5.14b/8c’s: La Fabelita and T1 Full Equip. In the video above she gracefully climbs the 13 bolt La Fabelita, making powerful movements when she needs to, finding a ton of creative rest positions, and completely running it out at the top. Not only does Evgeniya crush outside, but she also ranked 14th in last year’s World Cup Lead Climbing Series. We’ll definitely be looking out for her in this year’s competition circuit and for more sends like these.

Climb on!
Mary

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The Night Ashima Beat DWoods: Ring of Fire 2014

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Now that I’ve finally picked my jaw up off the floor, I can sit down to recap last night’s Ring of Fire sport climbing competition finals at Central Rock Gym in Watertown, MA. OK, about the title, she didn’t EXACTLY beat Daniel Woods, but it was pretty amazing (I’ll explain below). First I have to say, I couldn’t imagine a more perfect setting for in an indoor ropes comp. The 50 foot, overhung lead wall that is the centerpiece of the CRG Watertown gym is the impressive stage, and the spectators can watch the action comfortably from two different levels in the gym. The lighting, music, and emceeing were all on point, the energy was high, and everyone was having a great time. And the setting! Wow. The setting was made for high drama, with big dynamics, weirdo clipping stances, knee bars, and fun inverted movements that had competitors hanging from their toes! So who rose to the top of this stacked competition? Read on to find out.

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International Climbers’ Festival

ICF

The International Climbers’ Festival (ICF) is kind of like the Coachella of the climbing world. Not only is there world class climbing and festivities, but you name the climber celeb and they’ll be there. And similar to Coachella, located in the middle of a desert (except way more extreme and less L.A.), the ICF is takes place in the wild, wild west in Lander, WY. Since its start in 1993 by legendary climber and Wyoming native Todd Skinner, the festival has grown into an incredible celebration, gathering climbers from around to world to share in a week full of climbing and climbing related events. This year, July 9-13, the festival is highlighting women in climbing by bringing together a stunning line-up of strong ladies to crush on the 1000+ Wild Iris routes and also talk shop. We chatted with festival director Mandy Pohja and one of the aforementioned strong ladies, Kate Rutherford, about the upcoming ICF and what it takes to create a festival with climbing at its core. You just might need to change your summer vacation plans and hitch a ride to Lander.

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