VIDEO: James Pearson - 8b Big Wall - Joy Divisionby Jack Geldard - UKC Chief Editor Nov/2011
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This large granite wall is one of the finest in Europe and sits above the popular climbing destination of Val di Mello. A 2 hour approach leads to a flat base and a rudimentary bivouac hut beneath the face.
James has been working on this particular route all summer, and on the 13th of October, managed a one-push free ascent. James climbed the route over two days, with a bivvy.
The route has multiple 8b pitches and although the fourth pitch is reportedly the crux, James found the first pitch to be the hardest for him:
"The first pitch is the most difficult in isolation for me. The style is sustained lay-backing up a thin finger seam with only bad smears for your feet. I could fall on any move, and knew that success would not be dependent on pulling harder, but staying absolutely focused for the entire pitch. With every attempt, my skin would take a beating, and with so many hard pitches waiting above, I knew I needed to climb it quickly."
The full story is on the North Face Blog, where they explain a bit more about the route:
Joy division climbs parts of three existing routes on the Qualido Wall: "Forse si, Forse no", "Mellodramma" and "Melat". The complete line was first free climbed in 2003 from the local hero Simone Pedeferri, and since then the route has seen various different attempts expecially in his first part (the Miro Piala and Igor Koller 3 pitches called "forse si, forse no", 8b.) Pedeferri's ascent was climbed over 3 different days, and finally James has climbed it in one push.
You can keep up to date with James on his website: www.realbigpimp.in
You can see James Pearson at the Kendal Mountain Festival as part of:
THE NORTH FACE NIGHT Part 1 - Saturday 19 November 18:00 to 19:30 - buy tickets
After bursting onto the UK climbing scene with impressive technical and bold ascents of several 'last great problems', James Pearson hit the headlines with the first ascent of The Walk Of Life in North Devon, immortalised in the film Committed. James then quit the UK and moved to Austria to concentrate on sport climbing and training, but has recently returned to the UK and applied himself once again to trad climbing with spectacular results such as the first ground-up ascent of Pembroke super-route Muy Caliente (E10). Let one of Britain's most talented and colourful rock climbers give you the inside story about his career, plus his recent trip with Alex Honnold to Chad.
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Easily accessible from the M6 and by train and there are plenty of accommodation options in and around the town but you need to be on your toes as they fill up very quickly over the Mountain Festival weekend.
For all your questions, accommodation and travel needs go to www.golakes.co.uk here you will find all the information you should need for your visit to Cumbria, alternatively call the accommodation booking line on 0845 450 1199.
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