On the 14th of June 2009, 16 year old Adam Ondra, the Czech youngster who has taken World climbing by storm, made a very fast ascent of Om, the only repeat since Huber forged the line back in 1992. Ondra confirmed what many had suspected, Om is F9a, and seemingly quite tough for the grade.
Ondra has now repeated all three of Huber's super-routes; Om (F9a), Weiße Rose (F9a) and Open Air (F9a+). Alex Huber climbed Open Air at Austria's Schleierwasserfall back in 1996, making it one of the very hardest routes in the world for around a decade.
Ondra teamed up with Huber for his recent ascent of Om. Commenting on the Italian website Planet Mountain, Huber said:
"We climbed together last Saturday and Sunday. What should I say: it's taken a long time! But now one can really say that climbers like Adam Ondra and Chris Sharma embody a generation of climbers who have breached a new degree of difficulty. Although Adam hasn't climbed anything harder than I did at the start and in the middle of the '90's, he is repeating these routes in sovereign style which proves that today he's climbing on a completely different level than the best were during my time."
Om is 45m long, 18m of which is hard climbing.
For many, Ondra remains largely an unknown quantity in climbing. Videos and video interviews with him are still fairly scarce, and the British climbing media hasn't really gone nuts over his ascents. This could be because European sport climbing attracts less interest over here than say, a good old British headpoint, but the reality is that, in terms of World climbing standards, Ondra's achievements are a significant step forward and an E9 headpoint isn't. You can read a bit more about Adam in this UKC Interview - Your Questions for Adam Ondra
For those wanting to catch a glimpse of the boy-wonder in action, below is a clip of Adam warming up on a boulder traverse then climbing Kosititras Nesmrtelny (Boneshaker Immortal) F8c+/9a in the Czech Republic.
The clip is taken from a film soon to be released by Bernartwood. You can find out more on his Vimeo Page.
VIDEO: Adam Ondra Kosititras Nesmrtelny F8c+/9a
Additional thanks go to Sarah Burmester of Klettern.de for info on this report.