Chris Fisher Climbs VIII, 8a, 8A and E8 all in Cumbriaby Duncan Campbell - UKC Jul/2014
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St. Bees based climber Chris Fisher has recently climbed his first 8A boulder problem, and in doing so has climbed an 'eighth grade' route in every discipline available in the Lake District; trad climbing, sport climbing, winter climbing and bouldering.
The first of the 'Eights' that Chris climbed in 2010, was I Wish I Was, an 8a/+ sport route, first climbed by Dave Birkett at St. Bees. Being an all-rounder based in the Lake District, Chris headed out winter climbing instead of hiding at the indoor wall, taking advantage of a good winter in 2012 to onsight Soul Vacation, an VIII 8 on the North Buttress of Bow Fell.
Chris then put his sport-climbing fitness to good use, headpointing Nowt Burra Fleein Thing, E8 6c, another Birkett creation on Cam Crag in Wasdale in 2013. With arguably the hardest part of the 'Eights' still to go, Chris applied himself and managed to climb his first 8A boulder problem; Shock Value near Coniston a couple of weeks ago.
Chris commented on his rare achievement to show such skill as an all-round climber:
"'I think we’re so lucky in the lakes to have such a great diversity of climbing on our doorstep. Not just different rock-types but so many different climbing styles and genres to choose from too! I love variety and hugely enjoy spending time on the hills climbing, in which ever style that may be, I guess this was the result."