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9a+ or harder at malham cove

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 griffer boy 28 May 2007
A bit of breaking news
Steve McClure repointed his project at Malham Cove today very inpressive and he recieved a round of applause from one and all at the crag.
inspire a lot of others to pull hard today, lots of ticks.

Grade!
Name? Unknown
Tim Chappell 28 May 2007
In reply to griffer boy:

"Repointed" it? Why, was the mortar dropping out?
In reply to griffer boy: Awesome effort by Steve! Its been on the cards for the last few weeks, as he has got through the crux on a few occasions I believe....world class effort on what looks like a world class route and line!
 abarro81 28 May 2007
In reply to griffer boy: bon effort.. hearing stuff like this makes me wanna get exams out of the way even more!
 billy.granty 28 May 2007
In reply to prana: that bloody hard Esomething 7a, wasn't it supposed to be one of the last great problems on grit. there's a video on youtube i think.
 abarro81 28 May 2007
In reply to prana: and supposedly he's done every move on 'the' groove
 2pints 28 May 2007
In reply to prana:

Elder Statesman graded HXS 7a/7b

He felt that he hadn't got enough experience of grit trad grades to be able to give it a suitable E-Grade so just numbered it as HXS.
 JPGR 28 May 2007
In reply to griffer boy: Good effort. British climbing seems to be so strong at the moment.
 Ropeboy 28 May 2007
In reply to griffer boy:

I'd heard he was close, good effort, look forward to hearing the grade and account of the ascent.

J
sam the man 28 May 2007
In reply to griffer boy: Awesome, fantastic effort, I saw him attempt it last week and it is certainly an impressive route-word on the street is that it is 8a to the roof, 8b+ through the roof, then a V11 boulder problem, followed by 8b to the chains..... I look forward to seeing what he gives it, and to seeing some footage.
Sam
 Andy Farnell 28 May 2007
In reply to Ropeboy: I watched him today, very, very impressive. The catwalk was silent during the redpoint and then gave a very british round of applause when he clipped the belay. Must be by far the hardest route in the country and one of the hardest routes in the world. Steve didn't give a name or grade at the crag.

Andy F
 Andrew Smith 28 May 2007
In reply to billy.granty:Have you gat a link to that?
 Andy Farnell 28 May 2007
In reply to sam the man: It's tough 8a+ to the roof (Overnite Sensation). Rich Heap filmed the ascent.

Andy F
 billy.granty 28 May 2007
In reply to andyyyy: just search for steve mcclure on grit and it should come up.
 kevin k 28 May 2007
In reply to griffer boy: any news?
sam the man 28 May 2007
In reply to andy farnell: Sorry, meant 8a+... Still hard though!
 richard kirby 28 May 2007
In reply to abarro81:

.............he also warmed down on a clean ascent of the groove!
 Ed Booth 28 May 2007
In reply to griffer boy: Thats awesome!!!! well done that man.

just of curiosity, are there many routes that get Fr9b? I remember somebody putting a link up in a forum to a video of some guy doing a really grotty route through some old quarry cave thing that was 9b i think.
Ed
 jgoodwin2020 28 May 2007
In reply to griffer boy:

Fred Rouling, Akira?
 Andy Farnell 28 May 2007
In reply to richard kirby: He said he was just going to do some easier stuff.....!

Andy F
 richard kirby 28 May 2007
In reply to boothy:

Chilam Balim ....or whatever its called...Danny Andrada route...he gave it 9b+ I think?
 abarro81 28 May 2007
In reply to richard kirby: you are jokin right??
 Adam Lincoln 28 May 2007
In reply to abarro81:

No, he did.
 abarro81 28 May 2007
In reply to Adam Lincoln: lead?
 Adam Lincoln 28 May 2007
In reply to abarro81:

Yes, clips already in though.
 abarro81 28 May 2007
In reply to Adam Lincoln: we're talking about cratcliffe groove but with pre-placed gear yeah?? fook me thats not a bad day!
 Adam Lincoln 28 May 2007
In reply to abarro81:
> (In reply to Adam Lincoln) we're talking about cratcliffe groove but with pre-placed gear yeah?? fook me thats not a bad day!

Ha! No, the groove at Malham!
 abarro81 28 May 2007
In reply to Adam Lincoln:oh bugger, you got me all excited there! my post earlier about 'the' groove meant cratcliffe - was a response to the 'what's he done on grit' cos id heard he'd done all the moves..
whats the grooves at malham?
 abarro81 28 May 2007
In reply to Adam Lincoln: i thought it woul;d be a bit optimistic in this weather..
 Adam Lincoln 28 May 2007
In reply to abarro81:

The Groove @ Malham is 8a+

Walking out of Malham this eveing would have been mint for the grit. Baltic!
 Sean_J 28 May 2007
In reply to richard kirby: yeah, not confirmed though . In fact, are there any routes harder than 9a+ with confirmed grades?
In reply to Sean_J: Is Chilam Bilam not the one that takes ove 1.5 hours to climb? It's really, really long IIRC
 gingerkate 29 May 2007
In reply to Sean_J:

This link is good, but it's from 2003. Someone got something more up to date?

http://www.climbing.com/exclusive/features/sport03/
Agent Moog 29 May 2007
In reply to:

Congrats to Steve, he really is up there with the very very best.

Why do threads like this go off topic within 20 posts? You can find out about Chilam Balam or any other 9a+++ routes using Google and the wit of a 10 year old.
 220bpm 29 May 2007
In reply to griffer boy:

Top effort by a true monster.

Bloody well done!
In reply to 220bpm: Apologies for the Hi-Jack.....very well done for steve. I need to get down to Malham sometime.
In reply to Peter Walker: He was so under teh weather he warmed down with a clean ascent of The Groove! Bon Effort Steve!
 seagull 29 May 2007
Awesome effort. Great to have another cutting edge route in the UK. Hope Sharma comes to have a crack at it soon as it'll be interesting to see how it compares to the other confirmed 9a+ routes.

Well done Steve!
sam the man 29 May 2007
In reply to Peter Walker: Surely be his logic (and here comes another punter speculating on grades...) it should be 9b, as he said it's way harder than anything he's done, and has done 9a+???
Sam
Agent Moog 29 May 2007
In reply to sam the man:
> (In reply to Peter Walker) Surely be his logic (and here comes another punter speculating on grades...) it should be 9b, as he said it's way harder than anything he's done, and has done 9a+???
> Sam

This is his first route above 9a.
 seagull 29 May 2007
In reply to Agent Moog:
> (In reply to sam the man)
> [...]
>
> This is his first route above 9a.

Plus the only confirmed 9a+s are Realization and La Rambla as far as I know. Steve has done the sensible thing by grading it as the next grade on from what he has previously climbed. Only with attempted repeats will anyone know whether the grade is 9a+ or harder but we know it is at least 9a+ as it is considerably harder than 9a (something only someone as strong as Steve can quantify!). There is always variation within a grade ("easy 8a" etc) and there are so few routes at the very top end that it always takes time for grades to settle down. Steve's route may be 9b but nobody can tell at the moment so 9a+ has to be the correct grade to give it for now.

sam the man 29 May 2007
In reply to Agent Moog: Ah fair enough, I thought he'd done 9a+.
Sam
Agent Moog 29 May 2007
In reply to seagull:
> (In reply to Agent Moog)
> Steve has done the sensible thing by grading it as the next grade on from what he has previously climbed.

To be fair, I don't think he's actually formally offered a grade yet, this 9a+ stuff is guesswork from rumours.
Agent Moog 29 May 2007
In reply to north country boy:

9a+ it is then.
 sandywilson 29 May 2007
In reply to north country boy:

So why is this not top news item on UKC?
 Michael Ryan 29 May 2007
In reply to sandywilson:
> (In reply to north country boy)
>
> So why is this not top news item on UKC?

Uhhhh....I was climbing this weekend and didn't get home until midnight. Sorry Sandy.

On Bank Holiday Monday (28th May) Steve McClure, 36, of Sheffield redpointed a new route at Malham Cove, a route that is the UK's hardest sport route and will no doubt emerge, due to Steve's track record and credibility amongst the world's top climbers, as one of the hardest sport routes in the world, along with Chris Sharma's Realisation 9a+, at Ceuse, France and Ramón Julián's La Rambla Direct 9a+ at Siurana, Spain.

With insights from Steve about his route.

Read more at http://www.ukclimbing.com/news/

 robin mueller 29 May 2007
In reply to Mick Ryan - UKClimbing.com:
> On Bank Holiday Monday (28th May) Steve McClure, 36, of Sheffield redpointed a new route at Malham Cove, a route that is the UK's hardest sport route

Equal hardest. The other is Violent New Breed - 9a+
http://www.rockfax.com/databases/r.php?i=14676

 Michael Ryan 29 May 2007
In reply to robin mueller:
> (In reply to Mick Ryan - UKClimbing.com)
> [...]
>
> Equal hardest. The other is Violent New Breed - 9a+
> http://www.rockfax.com/databases/r.php?i=14676

Updated. Thanks Robin.

 sandywilson 29 May 2007
In reply to Mick Ryan - UKClimbing.com:

Sorry Mick, keep up the good work.
 Michael Ryan 29 May 2007
In reply to sandywilson:
> (In reply to Mick Ryan - UKClimbing.com)
>
> Sorry Mick, keep up the good work.

Can't always be first Sandy but with something as important as this ascent I hope it shows that I put the effort in.

Mick

 StuM 29 May 2007
In reply to griffer boy:

Congrats Steve.

This was so inspiring to watch. I hadn't seen him on the route before but it looked to me like he breezed up it. We were talking about it in the car and I've never seen a crag go so quiet to watch one person climb.
xyz 29 May 2007
as one of the hardest sport routes in the world, along with Chris Sharma's Realisation 9a+, at Ceuse, France and Ramón Julián's La Rambla Direct 9a+ at Siurana, Spain.


I thought Dave Graham's route Coup de Grace in Ticino was given 9a+.
 Michael Ryan 29 May 2007
In reply to xyz:
> as one of the hardest sport routes in the world, along with Chris Sharma's Realisation 9a+, at Ceuse, France and Ramón Julián's La Rambla Direct 9a+ at Siurana, Spain.
>
>
> I thought Dave Graham's route Coup de Grace in Ticino was given 9a+.

Talking to several people about this, including Steve this morning. Grades are proposed, and there are many above 9a, including DG's Coup de Grace. But until they get repeats, they aren't really 'confirmed' or indeed is there is no 'consensus' until they have had several repeats.

Another factor is the track record of the climber establishing the route or repeating it.

The two mentioned, Realisation and La Rambla Direct, tick the boxes, established by climbers with a track record AND repeated, and attempted by world class climbers. They are the ones most established at the grade.

I'm sure others will join the list eventually, there is a whole list of them. Some are mentioned in the report.

Akira, Chilam Balam, Violent New Breed, Flex Luthor, Orujo, La Novena Enmienda, Definicion de Resistencia Democrata, Bimbaluna, Flatmountain.....etc

 Paz 29 May 2007
In reply to Mick Ryan - UKClimbing.com:

That is actually a very thorough article Mick. wheere di you here the rumours about Chilam Balam? Overgraded maybe, but noone thinks it's not been done do they?
 Michael Ryan 29 May 2007
In reply to Paz:
> (In reply to Mick Ryan - UKClimbing.com)
>
> wheere di you here the rumours about Chilam Balam? Overgraded maybe, but noone thinks it's not been done do they?

Yes they do.

 seagull 29 May 2007
In reply to Mick Ryan - UKClimbing.com:
>
>
> Yes they do.

Interesting. Don't suppose you can divulge who said this? Always sounded a ridiculous grade but I didn't realise there was also doubt over the validity of the route.
 Paz 29 May 2007
In reply to Mick Ryan - UKClimbing.com:

Who, or don't you want to say? Fred Rouhling suffered this shit for ages, then Jibe someone french and Tommy(?) someone American went and had a look at Akira with him and he burned them off to hell and back.
 galpinos 29 May 2007
In reply to Paz:

Jibe Tribout and Tommy Caldwell?
 StuM 29 May 2007
In reply to Mick Ryan - UKClimbing.com:

I'm not taking anything away from Steve here and I'm disappointed the thread has gone down this line but here is my opinion.

Surely Dave Graham is as qualified as Ste Mac to grade something 9a+ (if only on the basis of having done several 9as) and for people to respect it. Therefore, I think if you are going to compare Steve's new route with La Rambla and Realisation as one of the 'hardest confirmed routes' then you need to put Coup de Grace in there too, Sharma himself tried it and didn’t send it!

There is however no need to build this route up with POINTLESS COMPARISONS to other hard routes, everyone at Malham yesterday can tell you the route and climber are absolutely world class.
 Michael Ryan 29 May 2007
In reply to seagull:
> (In reply to Mick Ryan - UKClimbing.com)
> [...]
>
> Don't suppose you can divulge who said this?

No. Only they can say. There is a big problem with specualtion like that. It tars the accuser as much as the accused, even if there is substancial evidence.

All I can say is that it was a reliable source.

There are numerous examples of 1. overgrading 2. routes not done and 3. downgrading for several reasons, many of them fundamentaly commercial, concerning money and kudos.

Either accept it or deny it, because climbers are their own record keepers, it is open to abuse and has been abused. The top climbing peer group have an informal network where they weigh up the evidence.

This claiming and grading business is very complex discussion.

It is worth saying though that the UK, primarily because of its obsession with getting grades right, and its conservative nature of grading (sandbagging perhaps) is fairly clear of this type of shenanigans, especially when it comes to someone like Steve McClure who operates in a very open and thoughtful way and is judged by his peers.
 Michael Ryan 29 May 2007
In reply to StuM:

Oh dear!
 Michael Ryan 29 May 2007
In reply to StuM:
> (In reply to Mick Ryan - UKClimbing.com)
>
>> There is however no need to build this route up with POINTLESS COMPARISONS to other hard routes

I'm afraid that is beyond our control Stuart and is indeed how routes are graded, by comparing with other routes, who did them and how many repeats they have had.

Even Steve himself grades relative to other routes he has done, as most top climbers do. He said that himself this morning.

Yes, world class, as everyone at Malham witnessed and I hope this is reflected in the report for those who weren't there to witness it.

Mick
In reply to Paz:

PM'd you Paz.
 StuM 29 May 2007
In reply to Mick Ryan - UKClimbing.com:

Mick, I am sorry but you are not qualified to decide what can and can't be compared to one route or another, your opinion is just that, an opinion! like it or not, just because your opinion can become 'news' it should not hold any more weight than anyone elses on here. if you are not careful then ukc news will end up as ridiculous as some of the news items on 8a with the 'reporters' point of view being put across fact.
 Paz 29 May 2007
In reply to Mick Ryan - UKClimbing.com:

> No. Only they can say.

I know confiding in you is not quite the same as posting on an esoteric thread in a less popular climbing forum, but I feel I must say one one occasion your principles didn't stop you from bringing similar accusations to a much wider audience.


> when it comes to someone like Steve McClure who operates in a very open and thoughtful way and is judged by his peers.

That's what makes this impressive and hard to downgrade; he's basically consolidated 9a with his
3 routes (one of which definitely saw off Spoony, and it's inconceivable that the others never saw attention) and so if anyone knows what 9a+ feels like he does.

Personally I'm glad that we have a route two grades harder than the climbing on the hardest trad route, that you'd definitely not solo.

If the Scots were able to say "9a+? Och aye, we've gorwat climbmen tha' hard - orwan nuts" then as an English man I'd never be able to live with the shame.

The question is, when is Steve (or anyone else ) going to do Hubble?
 Michael Ryan 29 May 2007
In reply to StuM:
> (In reply to Mick Ryan - UKClimbing.com)
>
> Mick, I am sorry but you are not qualified to decide what can and can't be compared to one route or another, your opinion is just that

As regards the Realisation and La Rambla Direct comparison, that is isn't my opinion. There is some speculation because if you weigh up the evidence as regards the track record of some of the climbers involved it does become clear who and what is respected.

It isn't an exact science by any means and you have to weigh up all the information available.




 ste mac 29 May 2007
Grades - how we love em!

What grade is this new route? How important is it to get it right?

I'm not qualified to really say for sure. Others like Graham, Sharma, Andrada, Paxi and Ramon would have a much better idea, their track record of hard routes is greater. All the hard routes I've done are my own, and they are compared to confirmed 8c+ routes, but that doesn't mean they are 9a. This new route felt way harder than my '9's' but that doesn't make it 9a+, perhaps I was doing it wrong, it might be 8c+, but then maybe I was doing it perfectly and it's even harder.....

It seems important to stick a number on things these days. If you don't, everyone else will anyway. I suggest it could be 9a+, an estimate based on effort and experience. But then how important is it to get it right? Not important at all! Whats important is honestly suggesting a level. If it gets down graded so what, if it gets up graded, so what again. What counts is its a great route that tested me right to my limit. Had it been 9b or 8c the journey from start to finish would have been no more or less rewarding.
 Norrie Muir 29 May 2007
In reply to ste mac:
>
> It seems important to stick a number on things these days. If you don't, everyone else will anyway. I suggest it could be 9a+, an estimate based on effort and experience. But then how important is it to get it right? Not important at all! Whats important is honestly suggesting a level. If it gets down graded so what, if it gets up graded, so what again. What counts is its a great route that tested me right to my limit. Had it been 9b or 8c the journey from start to finish would have been no more or less rewarding.

Well said, and a good effort, so well done.
 jl100 29 May 2007
In reply to ste mac: Wow, the only person whos not fussed about the grade so far or claim to know what it is. Amazing effort, well done.
 jwi 30 May 2007
In reply to Mick Ryan - UKClimbing.com:

Fantastic effort. Being willing to put in that much time and effort for a route is in it self worthy of praise.


Anyway. The grade of La Rambla direct *is* contested. And by none other than Alexander Huber at that. As far as I understand from the discussion between Huber and Bindhammer here: http://www.sportclimbing.de/reload.htm?detail.php?1470+1 Huber simply refuses to believe that 5 more meter of not that hard climbing adds more the one half grade to his old 8c+.

It is often stated that Huber put his right hand in the crux two-finger pocket and clipped the chain, whereas on the direct version they are forced to use left hand. According to Huber he couldn't clip from the pocket and also used right hand, and thus the crux on both version is exactly the same.
Waldmeister 30 May 2007
In reply to jwi: You are right: He confirmed that he also used the pocket with his left hand and therefor climbed the whole crux. He doubtes that the rest of the extension raises the grading that much!

He also says in that discussion that in his opinion his routes Weisse Rose and Open air (both at Schleierwasserfall) are definitively harder than the Rambla extension. So what grades are they???
 jl100 30 May 2007
In reply to jwi: Maybe you could leave grading routes to those who have actually climbed them...
 Dan_Carroll 30 May 2007
In reply to jwi:
agreed, I read the same thing. I also read that the 5m of extra climbing after the original belay is only 7b+. if that is true is seems unlikely that the two extra grades are warranted. then again who am I to know, and I'm not about to start argueing with ramon, sharma etc, so until someone who's repeated it speaks out then I guess it'll stay at 9a+.
 Glyn Jones 30 May 2007
In reply to JoeL 90:
> (In reply to Jonas Wiklund) Maybe you could leave grading routes to those who have actually climbed them...

Jonas hasn't ventured an opinion he's stated what Alex has written on another forum imho.
 jwi 30 May 2007
In reply to JoeL 90: Now, what would be the fun in that? Anyway don't shoot the messenger, of course I have no opinion of my own – these climb are a full number harder than anyting I've done; I was just pointing out that the grade of La Rambla is not uncontested.
 jwi 30 May 2007
In reply to jwi: oops to slow.
 Glyn Jones 30 May 2007
In reply to jwi: I do believe that is round one to you!

Touché
 jl100 30 May 2007
In reply to Glyn Jones: Mr Hubers not done it either so it should say he not you. Sorry Jonas.
 jwi 30 May 2007
In reply to JoeL 90: No problem, no offence taken.

I wouldn't be so quick to dismiss Hubers opinion though: there are very few climbers in this world that has as much experience as he has and even though he copped out and lowered the chain a few meters he must have a pretty good idea about the difficulty.
Agent Moog 30 May 2007
In reply to jwi:
> (In reply to JoeL 90) No problem, no offence taken.
>
> I wouldn't be so quick to dismiss Hubers opinion though: there are very few climbers in this world that has as much experience as he has and even though he copped out and lowered the chain a few meters he must have a pretty good idea about the difficulty.

Question is, if it didn't add much difficulty, why lower the chain and make a route that finishes in the middle of no-where, when a little more effort would have seen him at the top?
 GUZZA 30 May 2007
In reply to griffer boy:

Nice one Ste you monster!
 Paz 30 May 2007
In reply ste mac:

9b then. Please don't go all Sharma on us.

In reply to jwi:

That's really interesting, in particular I think it was Alex at the time who openly contested (the grade of) Chilam Balam.
 mark reeves Global Crag Moderator  UKC Supporter 30 May 2007
In reply to ste mac: I think it would be interesting to read an article on the degree of training, sacrifice, mental torture and passion that you put into this route.

Bon Effort!

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