Adam Ondra has made the 3rd ascent of Neanderthal (9b) (9b), Santa Linya. Unusually for Adam, the route has put up a fight. He first attempted the route in 2011 and has since put in a couple of weeks' worth of effort. On the last day of his trip and despite racing the inevitable sun, Adam completed the route.
Chris Sharma climbed the route in December 2009 and it waited nine years for Jakob Schubert to claim the second ascent. Adam has now completed 24 routes that are 9b or harder.
Commenting on Neanderthal, Ondra said: 'There are not many routes that I can tell about that I really hated then at a certain point. But Neanderthal was definitely one of them. Not because the route is of bad quality, just because of how many times I failed again and again. Getting over it and finally succeeding was a huge lesson.
'Last day of the trip, first try falling off the dyno again, sun is slowly coming, I need to go fast. Now, or yet another season.
It was an epic try, but hell - it felt good to be in the sun at the anchor.'
Neanderthal 9b, Santa Linya✔ There are not many routes that I can tell about that I really hated then at certain point. But Nenderthal was definitely one of them. Not because the route is of bad quality, just because how many times I failed again and again. Getting over it and finally suceeding was a huge lesson. 2011 - tried one day, made it to the dyno 2nd go, next day it got wet. 2015 - tried for like a week, and found out I just could not the dyno from the ground. It felt too had with two fingers in the pocket, and I had no idea how to squeeze my 3 fat fingers in. 2017 - I found better kneebars, figured out how to squeeze my fat fingers into the pocket and stuck the dyno on day one of the trip!! Only to fall off from the nohand-rest above because a foothold broke. Then, I tried for 5 more days, but never had good conditions or I was just too weak. Second trip of that year I got sick. 2019 - Short trip and second-last day of the trip I stuck the dyno and fell higher again, due to brutal flash pump this time. Last day of the trip, first try falling of the dyno again, sun is slowly coming, I need to go fast. Now, or yet another season. It was an epic try, but hell - it felt good to be in the sun at the anchor. Pic by @jan_novak_photography in Santa Linya, but a different route. Props to @chris_sharma for making FA of this beast 10 years ago, and @jakob.schubert for the second ascent in December. @montura_official @lasportivagram @mytendon @blackdiamond @gardatrentino
Ondra has just returned from a long trip to the US where he onsighted classic routes such as Just Do It (8c+) and made a valiant onsight attempt of Salathe Wall (5.13c) on El Capitan. His long term plan is to focus on the 2020 Olympics and there is a planned video series taking an in-depth look at his training leading up to the event.