Serenata links together two pre-existing 8B+ boulders, beginning with the sit start of Serendipity (f8B+) - established by Dan Varian in 2008 - and finishing up Serenade (f8B+) - established by Ned Feehally in 2014.
The boulder revolves around a big crossover from a poor undercut, before moving into powerful moves on limestone slopers. The link-up was first climbed by Mike Adams in 2015, and has since seen ascents from top boulderers including Ned Feehally and Will Bosi.
In addition to a further four boulders at 8B+, Sam climbed both Serendipity and Serenade on his way to climbing Serenata, which represents new ground for him as his first boulder at 8C.
'Having climbed Serendipity almost three years ago, I always had it in the back of my mind as something I could possibly do', Sam told UKC.
'When I did Serendipity it felt so close to my limit and took so much out of me that I really couldn't face sitting under that boulder for a single extra second. I put it off for too long, thinking that I wasn't good enough to be trying something that hard'.
'When I finally did get back to it I was pleasantly surprised to have the pieces slot into place over a couple of weeks and for the moves to feel so much easier than they had in the past'.
'It's been great to have seen some tangible progress this year, despite not actively seeking it, but perhaps that's the secret?'
Whilst Sam may not have been actively seeking progress, 2023 has been quite the year for him. In addition to having climbed his first 8C, he has established an 8B+ link up at Raven Tor (Miller's Dale), climbed ten boulders at 8B, and a further three at 8B+.
Check out our interview with Sam from earlier in the year, where he spoke about the delicate balance between work, fatherhood, and climbing, as well as the new perspective that fatherhood had helped him shape in relation to climbing.
At the very end, he even mentions plans to 'head back to impossible roof and have a bash at Serenata'...