Alex Megos Climbs New 8B at Porth Ysgo, Wales

by Duncan Campbell - UKC May/2013
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+Felix Neumarker and Alex Megos, Porth Ysgo, 130 kb
Felix Neumarker and Alex Megos, Porth Ysgo
UKC News, May 2013
© Pete Robins

Young German talent, Alex Megos, has just climbed one of the 'last great problems' by climbing what was known locally as the 'Fred Nicole Roof', at Porth Ysgo on the Lleyn Peninsula, North Wales. The project had been tried multiple times by many strong local climbers, but none had succeeded. Alex has named the problem, somewhat controversially within the North Wales Bouldering circles, Das Pumpenhausen Testpiece.

Alex, in North Wales with the rest of DMM's European climbing team, went to Porth Ysgo on his first day in North Wales having driven from Germany the day before. Alex nearly sent the problem this session, falling off the top-out multiple times, but due to an in-coming tide, had to call it a day.

After a dissapointing day at Lower Pen Trywn due to cold temperatures and very greasy rock (Wild seas saw waves spraying the Marine Drive), and more cold temperatures forecast, Alex uncharacteristically returned to the problem for a second session, managing to complete it this time to make the First Ascent of one of the best and hardest boulder problems in North Wales, weighing in at around 8B. 

Commenting on the quality, Alex reckoned it to be "world-class"

+Alex Megos - Smashing in Das Pumpenhausen Testpiece, Porth Ysgo, 197 kb
Alex Megos - Smashing in Das Pumpenhausen Testpiece, Porth Ysgo
UKC News, May 2013
© Pete Robins

The problem was first identified during the 90s by the North Wales Bouldering elite, dubbed 'The Fred Nicole Roof' due to the difficulty it was thought that only Fred, the best boulderer in the world at the time, would be able to complete it. 

As standards rose in worldwide and locally, it became more of a possibilty with a number of locals trying it at various stages including; Mike Adams, Dave Noden and Pete Robins. Dave and Pete actually managed to come up with workable sequences for the problem but due to various factors never managed to send the project. Pete commented on the difficulty saying Das Pumpenhausen "is much harder than any of my 8Bs".

+Alex Megos on the world class Llyn 8B, Das Pumpenhausen Testpiece, 180 kb
Alex Megos on the world class Llyn 8B, Das Pumpenhausen Testpiece
UKC News, May 2013
© Pete Robins

In addition to this, Alex visited Parisella's cave yesterday, taking down many hard problems in what is likely to be one of the strongest days the Cave has ever seen. Alex climbed:

  • Lou Ferrino sans chipped holds, 8A
  • Halfway House, 8A
  • Rock Atrocity, 7C
  • Hatchatrocity, 8A
  • Hatchlife High, 8A/+
  • Left Wall Traverse, 7B
  • Left Wall High, 7C
  • Beaver Cleaver, 7A+/B

You can read more on North Wales Bouldering

The rest of the German team have also been taking in the variety of climbing that North Wales has to offer, visiting classic venues such as; Gogarth, Rhoscolyn, Dinas Cromlech, Tremadog and Craig Doris. 

Standout ascents include:

  • Alex Luger onsighting Dreams and Screams, E6 6b, Rhoscolyn.
  • Felix Neumarker flashing Strawberries (with pre-placed gear) and then jumping off the top!

Alex Megos is sponsored by: Tenaya, Patagonia and DMM


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