Team America On The Grit

by Jack Geldard - Editor - UKC Nov/2008
This news story has been read 28,882 times
Kevin Jorgeson above the slider on The Promise, 146 kb
Visiting American climbers Kevin Jorgeson, Matt Segal and Alex Honnold have had an amazing gritstone trip. They've ticked some classics, shook a few grade myths and pushed gritstone climbing to the limit.

Some (but not all) notable ascents and events:

  • Kevin Jorgeson's ground-up ascent of Parthian Shot (E9 6c) (which was attempted with Ben Bransby, who also came extremely close).
  • Kevin's repeats and possible down-grades of The Promise (E10 or E8) and The Groove (E11 or E8), which grabbed headlines worldwide.
  • Alex Honnold's onsight solo of London Wall (E5 6a), a hard and insecure finger crack (note, an on sight solo of this would equate to something like a hard E7 on sight)
  • Alex's on sight ascent of Master's Edge (E7 6b)
  • Alex's third ascent of The Promise (E10 or E8).
  • Matt, Alex and Kevin's team ascent of End of the Affair (E8 6c)

Interestingly Kevin notes in his blog that:

"I was super impressed with the difficulty and boldness of Equilibrium. After spending over 7 days working it, I still felt nowhere near ready to lead it. For my body, it has the hardest physical moves of anything I tried on the trip, with certain ground fall from the move I ripped my finger open on. To me, it represents E10."

Equilibrium was first climbed by Sheffield strong-man Neil Bentley in February of 2000, and was first top-roped by Ben Moon back in 1993 at a French grade of F8b+. Repeats have been from the super talented Neil Gresham, and man of the moment, James Pearson. In light of recent grading speculation, it is worth noting that James Pearson made a fast ascent of Equilibrium (over four days) aged just 19, and he is, as John Dunne put it, "the real deal".

The Videos:

UKC have a series of three films featuring Alex, Matt and Kevin in action on the grit.

  • Film 1: Kevin (first) then Alex climbing The Promise (E10 or E8)
  • Film 2: Kevin makes the first Ground Up ascent of Parthian Shot (E9 6c)
  • Film 3: Team America climb End of the Affair (E8 6c) (watch out for that no-hands rest!)

We will be publishing Film 2 at 9am tomorrow (Thursday) morning and film 3 at 9am on Friday morning.

Watch the first film - The Promise:

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