Tom Randall has completed his Devon Roof Project - a massive 40 ft long horizontal roof crack at Hartland Quay. After spending ten days on the project and battling with damp conditions, Tom's efforts came to fruition on 'The Kraken,' which he has graded V13.
According to Tom's blog, the problem features "20ft of pods and pockets into another 20ft of thin hands and monos with a tricky lip turn at the end."
Tom had initially travelled to Devon alongside Pete Whittaker following a tip-off from Stu Littlefair. Considering the project to be too hard, the pair abandoned it until this summer when Tom returned for a rematch. However, it certainly hadn't become any easier:
"The singular moves came together ok, but trying to link and maintain core tension whilst spinning around in the roof was desperate. All of this had to be done with little error so that I had a chance on the crux mono move."
Describing the crux, Tom wrote:
"It’s a long horizontal span to a back-hander mono, followed by a 270 degree spin through and a hard move to a thin hand jam (which is immediately followed by a really gnarly ring-lock move)."
Due to the situation of the climb beside the sea and in a cave, waiting for optimum conditions was hard to come by. Commenting on the grade, Tom reckons V13 is a suitable estimate until further ascents can add more insight:
"Whilst I’m not the most experienced “regular” boulderer in the world, I think I’ve got reasonable reference points from the strange world of crack climbing. For me V13 seems to fit the bill, but time will tell."
Regarding the name of the problem - The Kraken - Tom explained:
"It seemed appropriate that I named the Hartland Roof as “The Kraken” after a mythical monster of the deep that most of us hope we never have to wrestle with. That’ll be any form of crack climbing for most people then!"
Summing up finishing the project, Tom told UKC:
"Getting the Hartland Roof project done was really important to me for two reasons. One was that I proved to myself that if I stop spending my time hanging around on massive long endurance projects I can boulder a little harder than I expected. The other was that I know there's another good level above 8c on crack that's totally doable. It's now a matter of time and luck finding an amazing line. If anyone comes across it...let me (or Pete) know!"