Five Things Friday 25th Jan 2019


Another line up of five things happening in climbing this week to liven up your friday

1 - Brand new Moon film with David Fitzgerald out now

Moon climbing just dropped their new film Blocbuster yesterday, featuring half an hour of hard bouldering test pieces all around the world including Gneisbeißer 7C in Maltalal, Austria, Dulcifer 7C+ and The Great Shark Hunt 8B in Switzerland, Special Edition 7C+ in Ticino, Switzerland, Sur Gauche 8A Fontainebleau, France, and many more. Watch below, click fullscreen and check out the great filmwork!

David Fitzgerald Climbing Bügeleisen (8b+) and Big Paw (8c) in Blocbuster

2 - Alex Puccio isn't climbing in the Olympics

To anyone unaware, the 2020 Olympics features climbing for the very first time in a "combined" format, which means competitors will be bouldering, lead sport climbing, and speed climbing. They will then be judged on the overall results combined. This has created a lot of controversy for various reasons we'll cover in a proper article soon.

The hardest climbers of today that are considering competing are having to make big choices about their future. Given that most haven't done any speed climbing it means an entirely new training approach. Most serious comp climbers also climbed outdoors and enjoyed working hard projects and taking long adventures to new areas. Given the strict indoor only training routines and a pull into a much more specific style, many are weighing up their options.

Alex Puccio is one of the first big names in competition climbing to decide against competing in 2020 and has posted on her instagram as below with her full decision. We're totally behind Alex and look forward to seeing where this super strong and motivated climber heads from here

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Long post! Over the past 5-6 months I have been consistently thinking about the direction I want to take in my climbing career and where my heart truly lies. The decision I was faced with is to try or not to try for the Olympics. Mentally this has been very though for me, going back and forth with my thoughts. At first I said “YES, I want to try!” BUT then after some time I kept feeling like I maybe didn’t want to go down that road. I started to realize that I wanted to push for the Olympics because it sounded pretty cool and that I had always done competitions so I might as well. But then I stared to listen to my heart and mind a bit more and realized that I wasn’t really into training for Speed and Lead. I still love competing, BUT I also LOVE climbing outside! I truly believe that if I was going to make the push for the Olympics then starting now I wouldn’t be able to climb outside that much this year, maybe a few days here and there. And then if you made the Olympic Team it would be another 6 months on top of that. This is because you would have to train your a** off for all 3 disciplines. If the Olympic format was individual disciplines then I would have loved to try for it! I strongly believe that the main reason I have had such a long competition career and still going is because for the past 4 years I mainly climb outside and a couple weeks before a comp I’ll go in the gym to practice some comp style boulders. It has been working for me physically and most importantly MENTALLY! :) I’m just about 30 years old and I don’t feel like taking up another discipline, speed, and giving up my LOVE for climbing outside for such a long time. Sure, if someone handed me a ticket to the Olympics I would LOVE to go and it would be so much fun I bet, but that’s not how it works. Lol 😆 Even tho it sounds amazing to go, I honestly don’t think I would love or enjoy the process of training to get there. Maybe if it’s in the Olympics after, with individual disciplines, I will go for it! I also had to make sure that I wasn’t not going for it out of fear of failure. This was VERY important to me! I’ll continue what I have been doing and love, Rock and Competing!

A post shared by Alex Puccio (@alex_puccio89) on

3 - Comp climbing is awesome, you should watch some!

Wondering what all the fuss is about climbing indoors when there's so much rock about outside? Wonder no more! Competition climbing is one of the best spectator sports you'll ever watch, and no matter what background of climbing you come from, you'll be pulled in to the spectacle immediately.

The Olympics are beckoning, the unknown gym kids of right now are training hard for the future, and more and more we are seeing how far indoor setting can push climbing into new realms of difficulty and new styles of problems. There's a great article on here about why comp climbing should be embraced. They highlight the last boulder problem of the IFSC Bouldering World Championships in Innsbruck 2018 as a great watch.

If you want to see an event now there is a big Japanese competiton coming up, a helpful reddit user has posted a guide to watching it here, or you can jump to their live channel right now to take a look. Qualification rounds are live from 4:25pm PST today.

Not convinced? Check out some of the hardest moves from the Boulder World Cup 2018 in the highlights video below.

Boulder World Cup's 2018 | Hard Moves | Part 1

4 - The USA Climbing 2019 Combined Invitational was awesome

Speaking of amazing climbing competition events, the first US combined invitiational was held last weekend - the first major "combined" style event to be held in the US. As the Olympics approach, this event is a big milestone is what will become more common going forward. The event was a chance for invitees to join the USA Climbing team for the Olympics. Check results and highlights.

ESPN have just inked a deal to live televise future events on ESPN2, with a one hour show that will contain the highlights of the events as well as athlete-specific segments,and a live stream over on ESPN3. The perfect alternative to weekend football.

5 - Daniel Woods repeats hardest boulder problem in the US

Sleepwalker is an 8C+ / V16 boulder in the Black Velvet Canyon area of Red Rocks, Nevada. It was established by Nalle Hukkataival who originally called it the "Dry Nightmare" problem. Nalle went out with Keenan Takahashi, Daniel Woods, and Jimmy Webb as a group to try this and some other hard new boulders in the very popular area.

On December 15th 2018 after 11 days of effort Jimmy Webb took the first ascent. Watch the latest ascent video below from mellow climbing as well as the longer video of the first ascent by Jimmy which shows some of Daniel's original attempts too. Daniel Woods claimed the first repeat just a few days ago.

Sleepwalker (8C+/V16) First Ascent