8 Year Old Kids Cranking F8a and Font 8A

Ashima Shiraishi - the 8 year old US climber with a possible V11/Font 8A under her belt., 37 kb
Ashima Shiraishi - the 8 year old US climber with a possible V11/Font 8A under her belt.
© Ashima Shiraishi Collection

Tito Traversa aged 8., 190 kb
Tito Traversa aged 8.
8 year old Italian climber Tito Traversa (pictured right) has in the last few days ticked a spread of hard routes that would mark good form for many climbers three times his age (which would be 24!).

His recent tick list includes:

  • Faith F8a at Donnas (Valle d'Aosta) - 29/03/2010
  • La diretta Basolo F8a at Frachiamo (Valle dell'Orco) - 01/04/2010
  • Black faith F7c+ at Donnas (Valle d'Aosta) - 02/04/2010
  • Topomix colpisce ancora F7c+ at Finale Ligure - 06/04/2010

Tito has his own website here:

Meanwhile, over in the USA, 8 year old climber Ashima Shiraishi has been causing quite a stir by climbing some hard boulder problems including the classic V10/Font 7C+ Power of Silence at Hueco Tanks.

Ashima, from New York, started climbing on the Central Park Boulders and has climbed a possible V10 first ascent and a possible V11 first ascent as well as repeating Power of Silence and winning the recent Youth Bouldering Championship.

Her ascent of Power of Silence (captured on video and shown here on Deadpoint Magazine) caused some discussion on various US websites as some climbers thought her ascent either didn't count, or wasn't V10, as she used a completely different sequence to the normal method of climbing the problem. No shit, she's probably half their size. Of course it counts.

  • You can become a fan of Ashima on Facebook.

Top climbers are getting younger, the test-pieces from previous generations are becoming warm-ups for today's super-kids. Adam Ondra is possibly the World's greatest sport climber and is just 17 years old.

Where this trend will take climbing no-one knows, but I wouldn't be surprised to see 14 year old climbers winning World Cup competitions in a few years time. They have low weight, no fear and, most importantly, aren't allowed to drink beer!

However I can't quite put my finger on why, but when I see kids this young climbing routes this hard I feel slightly uneasy. Is it my ego taking a beating or am I worried about something deeper?

Ashima Shiraishi
© Ashima Shiraishi Collection
Tito Traversa climbing his first F8a - Faith

Ashima is sponsored by Evolv

Tito is sponsored by C.A.M.P and E9

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