Ultra Instinct 8C FA by Orrin Coley

© Orrin Coley

Orrin Coley has added a new 8C to Forest Rock. Ultra Instinct (f8C) is a low start to his problem Limit Breaker (f8B+) 8B+ and is his hardest boulder tick to date.

Orrin Coley on Ultra Instinct 8C  © Orrin Coley
Orrin Coley on Ultra Instinct 8C
© Orrin Coley

A Forest Rock regular, Orrin adds this link-up to multiple hard first ascents at this crag, including A Moment of Clarity 8B+, Rise of Cthulhu 8B+ and Ladybird Orgy 8B+.

In 2019, Orrin had considered a harder extension, but wrote it off as likely being too hard. After a solid year of training, in January 2020 he decided to start working it seriously and after a handful of sessions eventually figured out a sequence and realised it could go. Orrin told UKC:

'I went through phases of training specifically for it, mostly by board climbing, trying big moves but keeping feet on and working on body tension throughout. Then lots of fingerboarding, I basically wanted to feel overly strong for the crimps, which are more or less textureless flat 3/4 pad edges on a 30° overhang.'

Orrin ultimately spent more time working the project rather than doing more specific training. He said:

'Some moves are easy to make replicas of but the nature of some holds didn't lend themselves well to it, so I figured the best way to train for it was to be on it.'

After a couple years of getting close, the project started to wear thin on Orrin. He told UKC:

'My body and mind hit breaking point and I just gave up for a good 6 months at least. In the end I decided I'd only go back to it when I really felt like I wanted to.'

Since retiring from bouldering competitions, Orrin has focused more on his career and he spent the last year trying to balance work with maintaining his climbing performance on rock. This winter, his motivation was rekindled and he came into form. He trained by doing anaerobic capacity exercises on a board and max hangs for his fingers and shoulders. Orrin told UKC:

'When I eventually came back to the problem two weeks ago I quickly realised how different it felt and in the end it only took two sessions this year.'

Ultra Instinct, the low start to Limit Breaker 8b+.  © Orrin Coley
Ultra Instinct, the low start to Limit Breaker 8b+.
© Orrin Coley

Orrin suggests that the new start adds an 8A to Limit Breaker. Commenting on the difficulty, he said:

'I could try to compare it to my experiences on previous 8B+s I've done in that almost all of those took around 3-7 sessions at most. Although I did lose track of how many sessions Ultra Instinct took, I'd hazard a guess that 50 or 60 odd is a safe bet... Maybe it's not my style, maybe it's overgraded, maybe its even 8C+? At this point I honestly don't even care, for me it's the hardest I've ever done and no grade will ever accurately represent the effort this took for me.'

Having spent so much time on this project, Orrin says he feels 'a sort of weightless and directionless, like a state of limbo.'

In terms of new projects at the cave, there are more link-ups to be done. He added:

'In theory a sit start to this would be possible... It wouldn't add much quality but my god would it be hard and the idea of that gives me way too much anxiety right now. If we want to get super ridiculous, the traverse I did in 2017 - Ladybird Orgy - could be linked into Ultra Instinct. Basically it would be nearly 30 moves of 8A into 8A into 8C. Sounds hellish if you ask me, but don't quote me on that because if I lose my mind and come back in several years telling you I did it I'll look pretty stupid!'

This post has been read 3,507 times

Return to Latest News

Orrin Coley is a top UK boulderer based in Leicester. He has climbed several hard first ascents at Forest Rock, including two Font 8B+'s and has repeated Ben Moon's Voyager Low Start (Font 8B+).

Orrin's Athlete Page 9 posts 6 videos

9 Mar, 2023

I find it amusing that a "poxy little cave" in Leicestershire has such a quantity of hard quality bouldering.

It's not really poxy, even before bouldering became such a thing, it had some quality routes that compared favourably (not with respect to the situation but in terms of the climbing) with some gritstone classics. Easy access, pub close by (used to be one even closer), just remember to keep the language down because it's right next to houses.

Loading Notifications...
Facebook Twitter Copy Email