Again Adam Ondra delivers. This weekend at Oliana, he first did the first ascent of what used to be Chris Sharma's Chaxi Raxi project (F9b) and then onsighted Blanquita, F8c+, at the same crag.
I had the opportunity to talk to Chris about the route the other day. He describes it as very bouldery. Hard sections with really good rests between them. It can be divided into two parts, a short 9a or so, a no-hands-rest where you can recover 100%, and then a hard 9a or perhaps 9a+.
In an interview on Planet mountain, Adam describes it like this:"Well, it's circa 40m high with the crux after the second bolt, a difficult section which would be about Fb8B+ boulder. This is then followed by circa 9a/9a+ climbing, with some good rests.".
So, what's next?
Well, it would seem the rumours about Adam's plans to try Chilam balam, the 80m 9b+ at Villanueva del Rosario near Málaga, are true! And what's more is that Chris and Adam are planning to go try it together in a few weeks.
Here's what the man himself has to say about the route:
I spent 8 days in total in Chaxi Raxi, 9b. It is very bouldery at the begining, possibly 8B+, maybe even 8B+/C boulder problem or 9a/a+ route if you count all those 14 initial moves, but the real crux is a long move involving three intermediates to get into strange slopy crimp and dynamic move from there. If you do the boulderproblem at the bottom, you can shake out really well on the tufa, even make a very short no-hand-rest. It is very good rest, but I would not call it 100% rest. From this tufa it weighs in about 9a/a+, right hand start via 7b detour is called Chaxi on its own and could be easier 9a+.
The rest of the route consist of three bouldery sections more, with a good jug between the first and second and poor rest between the second and third.
The third bouldery section is another crux that involves a wide throw from strange right-hand pinch in slopy sidepull, which is very hard to control. The very last 15 meters weigh in around 8a, maybe 8a+, once again after you rest on a good rail.
It is not the best line of Oliana, but nevertheless it is impressive and my hardest route so far.I would not like to comment Chilam, since I am bit awkward about he fuzz that everone is talking about a thing that has not even started, I can only say that I am looking forward to it as well.
Black Diamond, Montura, La Sportiva, Beal and Hudy Sports