British climber Stewart Watson has succeeded on his hardest route yet with an ascent of Mordor (F8c+/9a) at Niederthai, Austria.
Mordor, first climbed by Markus Haid, starts by climbing the super-hard F8c Gondor before bearing rightwards through steep ground.
Describing his redpoint efforts to UKC, Stewart said:
"I made fast progress with this route and thought I could climb it pretty fast but I had totally underestimated how hard the crux was after climbing 20m of 8c to get there. The crux section involves very explosive moves on crimps and it took me a long time to be able to commit to the explosive crux sequence and to just go for it. After two years of attempts I finally climbed the route on Sunday the 6th of September and I'm sure that you could hear my cries of joy in the UK!"
The route took Stewart over 15 days of attempts spread over a two year period. The route is unclimbable in the winter months, "There's six months of snow in Tirol making it impossible to climb." explained Stew.
This route marks an increase in standard for the young British athlete, "This is by far my hardest route that I have ever climbed or tried." he said, and brings Stewart Watson alongside a very small number of UK climbers to have operated at the F8c+/9a level.
Stewart, a member of the British Bouldering Team, also put in an excellent performance in the Bloc Master international bouldering competition in Innsbruck at the end of August, where he made it into his first ever international bouldering final. The Bloc Master is an International Federation of Sport Climbing (IFSC) event and consisted of a very strong international field. Stewart qualified for the final in second place and finished sixth overall in the final. The final placings can be seen below:
1st Lukas Ennemoser (AUT)
2nd Fischhuber Kilian (AUT)
3rd Gelmanov Rustam (RUS)
4th Moroni Gabriele (ITA)
5th Lama David (AUT)
6th Watson Stewart (GBR)
Photos: Stewart Watson on Mordor F8c+/9a
Stewart is a member of the British Bouldering Team.