Monday, December 31, 2012


Montagu recently received it's hardest face climb courtesy of Clinton Martinengo. "Brutality" 33 at Snark Buttress in Oorlogs Kloof lay as a project for nearly a decade before Clinton summoned enough motivation and strength to finish it off. Steve Bradshaw (Snr)* had the following to add:
"Between Christmas and New Year 2002, Guy and Robyn Holwill, Clinton Martinengo, Mark Johnston and Steve Bradshaw (Snr) rebolted the lines on Snark Buttress, Oorlogskloof, creating, with the first ascenionists blessings, what have become probably the most popular routes in the kloof. They also made some new link-ups and bolted two projects that remained unclimbed until recently. In 2010 Steve completed the first of these – the very thin slab right of Peace Frog. "As I Am" is shorter than my Thermarest, but features some tricky moves and small holds and goes at 31. It took until 27th December 2012 for Clinton to take down the remaining project. With resident guardian of Oorlogskloof (Steve) sidelined with injury and recently struck down by a golf ball to the head while out walking in his suburb, Clinton has set about upgrading Oorlogs with a vengeance. He rebolted all the routes on the Canasta Buttress (which are now safe), bolted a new project high up above Snark Buttress and started re-working the remaining project on the Snark Buttress. The line follows tiny laybacks, crimps and slopers left of The Pig Must Die, and is characterized by very insecure climbing, terrible footholds and very tenuous clips. Clinton finally got the redpoint of "Brutality" on about his 8th attempt of the day on 27th December, just managing to complete the project in a decade. If you are looking for a quick tick at 8b+/33, this might not be the route to hop onto. It bakes in the sun all day, leaving only a small window of opportunity in the evening, has handholds that would feel terrible as footholds and a couple of really heart-stopping clips."
Clinton cruxing on "Brutality"

*Doctors report that Steve (87) is currently being kept alive on a coffee machine, but given his quality of life are seeking the consent of his climbing partners to switch off the machine.

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Another Rocklands clip: Recollection

Check out this great clip by French climber Lucas Menegatti of his trip to Rocklands earlier this year. It also briefly features Arjan de Kock getting super close to sending "El Corazon" 8B, a line he later succeeded in completing.

Monday, November 5, 2012

Moderate Monday

Marijus Šmigelskis climbs a few nice lines in Kleinmond during the Rock Rally held earlier this year.

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Matt Bush: No Strings Attached

In case you somehow missed this vid, here's Matt Bush busting out some seriously impressive solos around the cape:

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

Vivid Landscapes

Mélissa Le Nevé from France, bouldering in Rocklands during the 2012 season:

Friday, September 28, 2012

An update from the ledge

Check out the footage of Joe Mohle opening "Darkest Africa" 32, back in May this year.

Thursday, September 13, 2012

Four from Rocklands

Niel Mostert, Alan Hills and Hermann Rabe sending a few 7C/7C+ in Rocklands.

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Harry Cruising in Rocklands

Harry Crews sampling some Rocklands stone with repeats of "Like a Squirrel" 7A+, "Jaws" 7C and "JC's Fortress Experience" 7C.

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Like a Capie

Check out a fun little clip of a bunch of former Durbanites trying to earn their place in the Cape Town bouldering scene...

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Kleinmond Rock Rally 2012

The Kleinmond Rock Rally returned this year under the organisation of Warren Gans from RAM mountaineering, and featured both sport climbs and boulder problems in the line-up for the first time. The format offered two categories; a normal "open" category allowing competitors to focus on sending the hardest climbs possible, and an "under grade 23" category for those planning a high volume day.
The winning team in the "open" category, Team Jumar, consisting of Julia Chen and Marijus Šmigelskis, was the only team to climb both routes and boulders and won with a convincing margin. Both climbers managed to climb the hardest existing routes, "Percolator" 30 and "Wings of Glory" 28, as well as all of the hardest problems at the crag. Most impressive was the fact that Julia climbed both "Percolator" 30 and "Wings of Glory" 28 on her second try, and also managed a flash of "Talon Sanctuary" 7B. Visiting Tasmanians Claire and Kim climbed well to take second place.

The "open" category:
1 Jumar (Julia and Marijus) 12335
2 Team Tassie (Claire and Kim) 8740
3 Alan and Llewelyn 3760
4 Eastern Europeans (Aleksander and Maciej) 2100

The "under 23" was the most popular category, won by Kevin and Cormac:
1 Sexy Slab Slayers (Kevin and Cormac) 3550
2 Winelands Angels (Brenda and Toni) 2740
3 Amaaaaaazing (Renee and Jane) 2120
4 Grizzly Adams (Johnny and Andrew) 1760
5 Lord of the Slings (Juli and Cuan) 1560
6 Boer (Ihan and Andre) 1300
7 Huff ‘n’ Puff (Hagen and Alexander) 960
8 Team A (Johann Papendorf) 640
9 Kirsten and Meghan 640

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Crimps in the Cape

Arjan de Kock had a fairly successful winter in Topside climbing "Koeberg" and "Black Hawk Down" , both 8A+, and flashing "Malboro Man" 8A. He then went on to nab the first ascent of "Skobbejak" 8B and make repeats of two of Topside's three existing 8B+'s, "A Simple Knowing" and "Mirta".

Benjamin de Charmoy claimed repeats of "The Midnight Barber" 8A and "In Search of the New Sound" 8A+/8B as well as the old school classic "Boogie Nights" 8A+.

Rachelle de Charmoy managed to make the second female ascent of "War of the Worlds" 7C at The Cinema in Topside

Monday, August 13, 2012

Internationals: The Rocklands Post 6


"Royksopp" 8A
"Gliding through waves like dolphins" 8A
"Black Shadow" 8A+
"Brown Shadow" 8A
"The flying Burito Brothers" 8B First Ascent
"Peahi" 8A+ FA
"Oliphants Dawn" 8B+ first repeat

Monday, August 6, 2012

Internationals: The Rocklands Post 5

"Golden Shadow" 8B+
"Pinotage" 7C
"Springback"  or a line near that? 8A/8B?
"A Splash of Red" 7C+
"Orange Heart" 6C
"In between dreams" 7C+

Monday, July 30, 2012

Internationals: The Rocklands Post 4

Born into Struggle, 7B+
Full Tony Tick 8A
El Corazon 8B
Tea With Elmarie 8A+
Poison Dwarf Direct 7C+
Purple Nipple Clan 8A
Hole in One 7C+
Tore de Pisa 7A+ First Ascent
Cedar Spine 7C
Nutsa 8A+

Monday, July 23, 2012

Internationals: The Rocklands Post 3

"Megalo" 8A+
"Who the Fuck is Minky" 7C
(re)discovering Powerlines Area
"Hole in One" 7C+
"No Late Tenders" 7C+
"Maniac" 7B

"Pinotage" (stand) 7B+
"Shosholoza" 8A+
"Springbok" 7A+
"Leap of Faith" 8A
"The Quintessential" 8B
"Creaking Heights" 6C
attempts on "Monkey Wedding" 8C

Monday, July 16, 2012

Internationals: The Rocklands Post 2

Ulan Batar 7B
The Ark 8A
Vlad the Impaler 7C
Take off your shoes 5C
The Hatchling 8A
Teagarden Roof 7C

Monday, July 9, 2012

Internationals: The Rocklands Post 1

Every week the strong international crew that is visiting Rocklands for the season will release a clip of their exploits. Here is the first of these clips, enjoy:

Thursday, May 17, 2012

Darkest Africa

Table Mountain's Africa Ledge just received a hard new-school line courtesy of Joe Möhle. The single 15 meter pitch that is now "Darkest Africa" has been Joe's longest project, throwing countless hurdles in his way, the biggest of which was the seeping headwall. Joe is grading the line 31, although he feels it's a fair bit harder than most of the other routes he's done of the same grade.

Joe had the following to say about his latest addition to the test-pieces at The Ledge:
I first envisioned the unlikely line just over 2 years ago. A few months went by before I actually could piece it together and began to believe it was possible for me. I pulled out a piton (part of it belongs to an existing aid route) and replaced it with two opposing wires. This is the only fixed piece on the route, and I sent it placing all other gear. It is possible to do it placing all gear, but would be slightly more dangerous. 
I had to wait out two winters to do the the route because the headwall seeps. This and several trips overseas meant that I could never build up a good rythem of working the route. I came very close before leaving for Morocco and Switzerland this past summer, thanks to the patient belays by Richard "Squeaky" Halsey.
I sent yesterday on what was likely my last chance before winter comes and I have to leave for Switzerland! It is predicted to rain for the 4 days in Cape Town and the route needs 5 days to dry. Phew!!! 
It took approximately 30 redpoint attempts over two years of constant self-discovery to finally open what is definitely my best climbing achievement to date. There is likely to be a second pitch to this one, but I'm not sure if it goes yet (here we go again!). I'm calling the first pitch Darkest Africa: Shot In The Dark 31
Joe is sponsored by Edelrid, DMM and Wild Country.

Monday, May 14, 2012

Moderate Monday

Julia Chen on the super dab-classic "Osiris" 7A+ at Echo Valley in Topside.

Friday, May 11, 2012

UPDATE: Joe in Hermanus

In April, Joe Möhle made long awaited second ascent of "Be Quick or Be Dead" 31 at Crystal Dream Palace in Hermanus. Garrreth Bird tagged along to capture the moment and produced this cool clip:

Monday, May 7, 2012

No Stranger to Danger

Marijus Šmigelskis has added yet another excellent line to Echo Valley's growing list of classic problems. "No Stranger to Danger" 8A takes an imposing line up a hanging shield of rock above a less than ideal landing on the massive boulder behind the Cape Fear block. It took Marijus several sessions to work out the complex sequence through the problem's series of micro crimps and crux final move. Check out the clip of the send below:

Monday, April 30, 2012

National Boulder League Finals 2012

A somewhat controversial NBL finals took place at the university wall in Durban over the weekend after a late-in-the-season venue change from Grahamstown. Most WC climbers opted to give the event a miss as a result. Benjamin de Charmoy took the mens title for the third consecutive year, and Candice Bagley claimed 1st in the ladies open.

Rachelle de Charmoy

Mathieu Schneuwly brings us a brief run-down of the day:

The warm and humid conditions of Durban played host to the 2012 NBL national finals at UKZN. This year their was an overwhelming attendance of Gauteng and KZN youths who were eager to test themselves against one another and showed plenty of good natured rivalry. There were categories to cater for every age group, including novice and expert categories within the age groups. Everyone was invited!
The qualifiers were kicked off with categories unleashed one at a time to scramble up their problems within a 45 minute time limit. Advantage was given for flash ascents in the qualifiers, meaning people were tentative to be the first person to try, but things quickly got going. The qualifiers ran smoothly and the problem setters did an excellent job to ensure that every style was challenged and that the competitors were kept on their toes and well amused. 
The top 5 of each category were entered into the grand final which was scheduled for the afternoon after a well needed lunch.
The finals consisted of three problems with a 5 minutes on 5 minutes off system. The finals problems were of top quality yet somewhat soft although the fields were evenly spread. The national mens title was once again claimed by Benjamin de Charmoy of WC who flashed two of the problems and obtained the bonus hold on the third. Second place was Mathieu Schneuwly also from WC who’s two top outs and a bonus hold were enough to hold off Dylan Vogt of Gauteng who took third place.
The ladies category was a somewhat closer call with an attempt or two seperating the positions. The Ladies title was handed to their very own Candice Bagley followed by Rachelle de charmoy from WC, both of whom shared a flash or two, and whose scores were seperated by mere attempts. Faye Brouard of KZN took third place after a climbing hiatus to end the day as a huge success!
Unfortunately the 2012 NBL final failed to showcase the full field of talent in the NBL circuit, and if the aim of the organisers; to raise the level of the competition to an international standard; is to be achieved, more effort should be made in future events to ensure that the adult open category is fully representative.
Benj de Charmoy
Mathieu Schneuwly
Faye Brouard
Check out the full finals results after the jump...

Thursday, April 26, 2012

Vintage Ebola

Check out this old school clip of Paul Brouard making the second ascent of "Ebola" 33 at The Cauldron in Montagu back in 2002. This is an extract from "High Society" probably the second climbing movie made in South Africa (the first being "Monkey Pump" in the 90s).

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

WP Boulder League - Final results

The 2012 competition season has come to a close in the Cape after twelve weekly rounds held at various venues around Cape Town. This year's overall title went to Marijus Šmigelskis in the men's open category, Julia Chen in the ladies, Kieran Amin in men's intermediate and Andy Court in U18 boys.

Check out the full results after the jump.

Monday, April 23, 2012

Moderate Monday

Marijus Šmigelskis re-climbs "Scirocco" 7A+, a problem he opened in 2007 on the Cape Fear boulder in Topside's Echo Valley.

Monday, April 16, 2012

WP Boulder League - Round 11 results

Round 11 took place on Friday night at CityRock. Check out the results after the jump. One event remains for the season, at UCT tomorrow evening (17 April).

Sunday, April 15, 2012

Be Quick or Be Dead

The long lost and forgotten mini trad crag of Crystal Dream Palace on the outskirts of Hermanus has lay devoid of any real activity ever since Clinton Martinengo developed the cliff at the turn of the millennium. Joe Möhle decided to give the area some attention with his sights set on the crag's testpiece, "Be Quick or Be Dead" 31, which had no repeats since Clinton opened it in 1999.
Joe made the drive out to Hermanus five times before success came on a rainy Saturday and he claimed the second ascent of what he claims is "the best power endurance route in the world...". The ground fall potential and the tiny nature of the gear placements make placing pro on lead extremely dangerous and difficult, so Joe opted to climb it on pre-placed gear, in the same style as the first ascentionist. Thanks to Garrreth Bird for the screen grabs!

Saturday, April 14, 2012

Paarl bouldering topo updated

Niel Mostert has updated the Paarl bouldering topo with all the new problems opened since the last version. Check it out.

Friday, April 13, 2012

A Grand Finale for AdK

Arjan de Kock had pretty much given up on "The Big Island" 8C, the desperately condition dependant project he had been besieging all winter long as Fontainebleau moved into the warmer spring and summer months. However an April cold snap brought unexpected success for Arjan on another line he'd been working, the low start to "Satan i Helvete", which bumps the grade up a notch to 8B+ (he'd done the higher start in Feb). With renewed confidence, Arjan returned to "The Big Island" and became the 1st South African to boulder 8C!

Thursday, April 12, 2012

31 Up for Grabs by Phlip

The Easter Bunny gave Phlip Olivier a super sweet send over the weekend with one of Oudtshoorn's classics, "Up for Grabs" 31. Phlip says the route went down on the warm up of the third day, warmed up on the easier part and went for it! It was his fourth time on the route, and came quite unexpectedly for him.

"It did not go down without a proper fight though (some manly yelps and some girly screeching). Was ossem! Glad Estelle was there"
Phlip attributes his send mainly to his sending pant he received as a gift from his wife the previous day.
Phlip enjoying his well earned post-send sarmie in his new sending pant

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

WP Boulder League - Round 10 results

Ten out of the twelve rounds this season have passed for the WP Boulder League. Only the top eight scores of each climber count towards their final standings. Check out the full results after the jump. This week's round will be held at CityRock on Friday the 13th of April, at 17:30.

Monday, April 9, 2012

Moderate Monday

The next time your weekend is plagued with rain in Cape Town, why not head across to Paarl Rocks to sample some fast drying granite? Just 40 minutes from the city, it receives far less of the frontal weather that hits the peninsula in the winter months. Below, Phlip Olivier makes the first ascent of "King Joker" 7A+.

Saturday, April 7, 2012

Matt Free Solo

Another feature of Matt Bush, this time rope-free on some very impressive solos in Montagu...

Friday, April 6, 2012

Matt at Llandudno

Check out this clip of Matt Bush shot over the summer on some new and not so new problems at Llandudno, including his ascent of "The Love Project" 8B.

Thursday, April 5, 2012

Life Enhancement Program

As we reported in Feb, Joe Möhle made a trad ascent of an old sport project he opened last year at The Hole. The route was originally bolted by Jeremy Samson and stood un-opened for more than 10 years before Joe set his sights to it and created "Life Enhancement Program" 31. A few weeks later he returned yet again, this time with Jonathan Joseph to capture the magic. Enjoy:

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Candy for Snapdragon

Waterval Boven's mega classic "Snapdragon" 29 received some female attention a few days ago when Candice Bagley managed a send of the world-famous endro testpiece. Check out what Candice had to say about the route and some sweet shots by Gustav van Rensburg below:

"I had been on Snapdragon a few years previously but it felt fairly unattainable in the usual weekend trips to Waterval Boven. This time my trip was to be a bit longer and my power was up enough from bouldering that meant the moves did not feel difficult on their own. I spent 4 climbing days on Snapdragon this time and from the first day it felt doable, quite the contrast from the first time I was on it.

Every move of this classic route feels elegant and interesting. It has a little bit of everything . There is a crimpy, balancy crux that requires specific foot movements which make it almost effortless. The pumpy lower section is full of seemingly easy moves, each draining a little of your energy. My favourite move on the route is a crazy drop knee, inspired by Nadine Methner’s video, in the middle section. The orange wall suddenly kicks back to become more of a pump fest. The famous heel hook crux is novel and a great deal of fun, topped off with some tricky moves to the chains.

I have about 5 days left in Boven so hopefully I will be able to tick off another stunning endurance route like this."

Monday, April 2, 2012

Vajra Days

Julia Chen continues to rack up here impressive list of female firsts, this time with an impressive ascent of "Elfen Lied" a 14+ move 8A traverse! Julia built up her stamina over three sessions on the line, refining her sequence, and managing to send on her fourth day.

Just one boulder over, Andrew Wood managed a repeat of "The Sound of Violence" 8A, and Marijus Šmigelskis managed to add a silly 6 move extension to the start of the same problem to create "The Sound of Violins" at one notch harder.

Sunday, April 1, 2012

CityRock Bouldering Comp 2012

CityRock held their annual bouldering comp on the brand new bouldering wall which has now doubled the climbing surface. With over R25,000 in prizes and hundreds of brand new imported grips, it's a surprise the entire country didn't descend upon South Africa's premier indoor climbing centre! In all, 35 problems were set to cater for all levels by some of SA's top climbers resulting in a wide variety of styles, as well as the usual dyno and monkey swing comps for those taking things a little less serious...

Andy Davies displays some old school stemming
technique to dispatch problem 28.

Mens Open
1 Marijus Šmigelskis
2 Duncan Fraser
3 Robbie Fraser

Ladies Open
1 Julia Chen
Mens Intermediate
1 Nielen Venter
2 Jason Collins
3 Adir Deokran
Womens Intermediate
1 Isabella Van de Rede
Mens Novice
1 Petrus Theron
2 Anesh Magan
3 Mats Elliot (tie)
3 Ryan Bezuidenhout (tie)
U18 Boys
1 Daniel Duval

Friday, March 30, 2012

Cinema Classics

Rob Fraser is beginning to transfer his indoor climbing abilities to real rock and the results have been promising. Topside's classic, "Cloverfield" 8A at The Cinema was sent after a few sessions, some marred by terrible conditions . Rob then went to make a single session send of the not quite as classic "The Life Aquatic" 7C+. Check out the send of "Cloverfield":

And here's another a clip featuring "The Life Aquatic", a better edit of Rob's "Cloverfield" send as well as a few moderates below:

Sunday, March 25, 2012

WP Boulder League - round 8 highlights

Check out some of the problems that featured in last week's boulder league at UCT. Thanks to Alan Hills for playing camera man on the night.

Friday, March 23, 2012

WP Boulder League - Round 7 & 8

Round 7 and 8 were held at UCT, check out the full results after the break. Your top 8 out of 12 scores count towards the final standings so from next week, your lowest rounds will be dropped. Also, remember that the next round is at UCT not at the MCSA on the 27th of March!!!

Monday, March 19, 2012

Moderate Monday

Moderate Mondays are back after a short break. This week, Andrew Wood demonstrates the beta on the tricky "Turbulence Arete" 7A at Topside's Echo Valley. Enjoy!

Thursday, March 15, 2012

Lately, in the Cape...

The Cinema's crimp classic "Cloverfield", saw it's 4th South African repeat when Harry Crews sent the problem on a solo mission on Monday afternoon. The problem was Harry's first 8A and it seems the boulder league sessions are paying off for several Cape climbers!

Over in Montagu, Jimbo Smith managed a redpoint of "Not for Sale" 31/32 at The Scoop after working the route on and off over the past few months.

Monday, March 12, 2012

WP Boulder League - Round 6

The 6th round of the Cape league took place at UCT. Check out the full scores below.

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Arjan in Brione

Check out this cool little clip of Arjan de Kock and friends bouldering in Switzerland. It features Arjan making "Amber" look like a 7A instead of an 8B. He managed to do this problem in a single session!

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

MTV Generation

The list of hard problems in Topside continues to grow with the addition of "MTV Generation" 8B by Marijus Šmigelskis at Echo Valley. The line climbs 13+ moves out of a cave above the Mighty Boosh boulders, with each move getting progressively harder. Check out the vid below...

Marijus discovered the line last September and spent numerous sessions last year and 3 this year before succeeding on the problem's complex sequence. Check out what he has to say about the problem here.

Monday, March 5, 2012

More Gauteng Boulder League results

Check out the results thus far from Wonderwall and Exploratio in Gauteng, courtesy of SANCF.

Friday, March 2, 2012

KZN Boulder League - Round 2

Check out the KZN Boulder League results after round 2 below, courtesy of SANCF.

Leslee Salzmann climbing in round 2

UPDATE: One Day Only!

Arjan de Kock has put his good form to excellent use on the gneiss boulders of Switzerland, putting in perhaps the most impressive achievement yet by any South African boulderer. In the blocs of Chironico, he managed to make a one day ascent of "Boogalagga" 8B, making him the first to climb this grade in a single session. Then Arjan repeated this feat the very next day in Brione by climbing "Amber" 8B, again in a single session!

No footage of Arjan on the problems, but check out this video of some Brits on the same climbs. "Amber" is up first, and "Boogalagga" is the third and last.

UPDATE: A cool clip has emerged from Arjan's brief Swiss trip. Check it out:

Thursday, March 1, 2012

WP Boulder League - Round 5

The fifth round of the WP Boulder League was relocated from the MCSA wall to UCT to accommodate the high number of competitors. Marijus Šmigelskis won the Men's Open with full marks, and Rachelle de Charmoy topping the Ladies Open. Check out the complete results after the jump.

Gauteng Boulder League Results - Round 4

Check out the results after round 4 from the South African Climbing Academy leg at St Peters courtesy of SANCF after the jump.

Friday, February 24, 2012

WP Boulder League - Round 4

Round 4 of the WP Boulder League was back at UCT. Benjamin de Charmoy and Marijus Šmigelskis both managed to send all the hard problems for full marks on the night. Clara Grant and Rachelle de Charmoy matched each other's scores for a tie in 1st place. NB: Round 5 will be at UCT next Tuesday, 28 Feb, NOT at MCSA.
Clara Grant on problem 6
Check the full results after the jump.

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

ADK in the woods

"Gourmandise" 8B finally succumbed to Arjan de Kock's efforts in Fontainebleau after numerous sessions over the past few months. Frustratingly, Arjan did the higher 8A+ start in just a few tries over a year ago, but the 3 extra undercling moves for the full line put up a bit of a fight this season.

To celebrate after his send, Arjan also climbed "Kheops Assis" 8B+ within the hour, just for good measure, and just coz he can...

Monday, February 20, 2012

Supertramp Joe

Joe Möhle recently returned from his adventure in Morocco and had the following to say about his trip:

"Flew in to Marrakech and overnighted there to get an early morning bus to Tafraoute.

Spent one week in Tafraoute:

Bolted a new route (remains unclimbed for future visitors), Cycled around the spectacular mountains and desert. Repeats of hard traditional climbs ("Negro Azabache" 28/7c, onsight and "Lover's Crack" 29/7c+, flash) plus many routes in the 18-25 range. And joined a big desert rave party with gypsies!

Travelled to the High Atlas, again via Marrakech

Spent one week in the High Atlas, Jbel Toubkhal region:

Opened a new moderate grade alpine route on Biguinoussene north ridge with British climber Kelvin Mann. Climbed Jbel Toubkhal 4167m, the highest peak in North Africa. Spent a few days trekking around these beautiful alpine peaks. Drank loads of sweet tea with the local mountain guides. Tried my best to make an appearance on a Maltese reality TV show to no avail :)

The background for the route in the video: Negro Azabache is situated on one of the famous Painted Rocks in the middle of nowhere. The route was just the easiest to film, being a sit start to a short route. although including the roof it climbs about 12m of crack. Compared to some ADK or Colenso cracks it seemed a bit soft but on par with many others I've done. but who cares... The rocks were painted in 1984 by a mad Belgian artist. He drove in about 20 tons of pink, black and blue paint in fire trucks and went wild! Usually I would consider that sort of thing pollution, but I grew strangely fond of the colourful rocks during the desert rave party :)"


Another angle of Joe's onsight of the same route, courtesy of Florian Schmale, a crazy German cycling through Morocco:

Saturday, February 18, 2012

WP Boulder League Round 3

The 3rd round of the Cape's boulder league was held at CityRock on Friday. The turn-out was a bit smaller as many people headed off climbing for the weekend. Nevertheless, Benjamin De Charmoy made his season debut in the mens open field and managed to secure top spot on the night. His sister, Rachelle, edged out Clara Grant for top spot in the ladies field. Full results after the jump...

Thursday, February 16, 2012

Gauteng Boulder League results after week 2

Results of the Gauteng leg of the National Boulder League are trickling in. Check out the full results after the jump.

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

The other Steve Bradshaw ALSO climbs 8c...

Hot on the heels of Professor Steve Bradshaw's recent success on "Where I Stood", a 34 (that's 8c in the French grading system) in Montagu, the younger (unrelated) Steve Bradshaw sent his 8c project in China's sport-climbing mecca, Yangshuo. Global traveller Steve junior had spent a few weeks in China climbing several routes up to 8b+, but his main goal "China Climb", eluded him until the very end of his trip. Disappointed, he joined his family on a brief sailing trip to New Zealand, but fortunately made plans to return to Yangshuo after a relaxing holiday and managed to send the route! Check out more of Steve's adventures here.

Steve Bradshaw  "China Climb"  - photo courtesy of The Stangie Travelogue

Monday, February 13, 2012

More action

Whilst everyone is melting from the heat in South Africa, Arjan de Kock is kickin' it in France and continues to tie up his loose ends from last year's Fontainebleau trip with sends of "Partage" 8A+, the world-famous arete, and the powerful "Satan i Helvete" 8B, with much better temps this year 'round.

Harry Crews has left the working world and gone back to becoming smarter at UCT. Being a student should give him lots more time to climb and he's already taking advantage of his situation by cruising through to Montagu one weekday afternoon and cruising up "Strange Days" 31 at the Palace in true Crews style...

Not contempt with his bolt-clipping first ascent of "Life Enhancement Program" 31 at The Hole last year, Joe Möhle spent a few more session on the route and finally managed to climb it placing traditional gear. When asked why? Joe simply responded "to climb hard on trad, you have to climb hard on trad...".

 Naureen Goheer's siege on "Faberge" 28 at Fernkloof ended rather soon when she managed to send on her first try after getting to the kneebar mid crux. This was Naureen's ninth 28 or harder route!

Thursday, February 9, 2012

WP Boulder League Round 2

The second round of the WP league took place at UCT again and the wall was packed way beyond capacity as climbers jockeyed for a chance on each problem. Robert Fraser was the only competitor to make it through the contorted start of problem 15 to reach the bonus hold to take the lead in mens open on the night. Julia Chen dominated the ladies field with the only send of problem 7 and was the only lady to move past the bonus hold of burly number 8. The next round is on Friday, 17 Feb at CityRock.

Check out the full results after the jump...

Monday, February 6, 2012

JC sends Hypoxia!

Montagu's classic burly roof "Hypoxia" 29 received it's first female ascent when Julia Chen clipped the chains on the route this Sunday. Julia tried the climb for the first time last November, and then returned several times over the summer to work out some girl-friendly beta for the route's powerful and dynamic sequences. Julia fell a handful of times from the very last move, each time taking ground scraping falls as she opted to skip the last draw, much to the terror of her belayer. Check out the send below...

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Rockmaster 2011

Check out the clip of the 2011 Rockmaster competition held at CityRock in Cape Town.

WP Boulder League Round 1

The first round of the Cape Boulder League kicked off last night and the turn-out was excellent. Over 50 competitors crammed into the sports hall at UCT to battle it out on 15 problems for 3 hours. The mens open field saw a 3 way tie on the night with Jimbo Smith, Robert Fraser and Marijus Šmigelskis sending problem 13. The ladies open was won by Julia Chen, who managed the only female send of the dynamic problem 6. Thanks to Calvin Kemp for organising the start of another promising comp season!
Check out the full results here.

Monday, January 30, 2012

Oor Doos 5

The long over-due final Oor Doos clip from Marijus Šmigelskis and Arjan de Kock's trip to Fontainebleau last year. Enjoy...

Thursday, January 26, 2012

Where I Stood

Huge news coming from Montagu yesterday afternoon was that the legendary Steve Bradshaw (Senior*) succeeded on his amazing project in Oorlogskloof. Steve bolted the line in 2010, which shares the first 4 bolts of "The Dream I Knew" before branching off rightwards, and has been working it on and off over the past two years. Steve had been coming close for several weeks now, battling the high temps of the Montagu summer, but fortunately it all came together and "Where I Stood" was born. Steve is reluctant to grade the line himself, but those in the know speculate it's in the 34/8c region.
Steve Bradshaw - "Where I Stood"    © Micky Wiswedel
Micky Wiswedel was on hand to capture the magic and has more about it on his blog. Check out some of his screen shots below and look out for the video of the ascent coming soon.

*although this is just a nickname the climbing community gave him as there is another younger talented South African climber by the same name, but with no actual relation).

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

KZN Boulder League 2012

Pretoria and Potchefstroom Boulder League 2012

Pretoria's events will be held at The Barn on Wednesdays from 16:00 to 21:00. All competitors have 2 hours to complete the problems. You best 4 out of 6 count so you can drop your two worst scores. There will be 12 problems at every event. R150 gets your entry for all six competitions.

  • Youth - Under15, Under 17, and Under 19
  • Open
  • Novice
  • Veteran (40-49)
  • Masters (50 upwards)

Competition dates:
  • 15 February 
  • 22 February 
  • 29 February 
  • 7 March 
  • 14 March 
  • 19 March (Due to the public holiday on 21 March, the last competition will be on a Monday)  

The North West province boulder league will take in Potchefstroom at the university bouldering wall. All events start at 17:00. The dates are as follows:
  • 14 February 
  • 22 February 
  • 28 February 
  • 07 March 
  • 13 March

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Johannesburg Boulder League 2012

There are two leagues running in Johannesburg. One at the St Peters wall and one at WonderWall. Check out the details below:

Check out the SA Climbing Academy NBL facebook group with more info here.

Wonderwall will have their competition evenings every Thursdays from 6 - 10pm starting on the 2nd of February. More details on that here.

Sunday, January 22, 2012

WP Boulder League 2012

As the National Bouldering League kicks off in various cities around the country, the Western Cape is first out the gates with it's opening event next week Tuesday!

This year The Cape will see 12 rounds of bouldering hosted at UCT, CityRock and MCSA. As with previous years the idea is two fold, find the strongest climbers in the Western Cape to represent the province at Nationals and to get everyone together to have as fun as possible. This year will see a few additional setters as well as some of the old ones to provide a wide selection of problems each week for all climbers to enjoy. Each round consists of 15 problems marked with a halfway point and a finish point, points will be awarded for reaching theses marks. We want boulder league to include everyone thus the problems are set so that they progress in difficulty but still allowing everyone a chance at sending. You have the whole session (5:30pm - 8:45pm) to work the problems and get up as many as possible. Please see below for details of the league including all the dates, venues, categories and costs. If you, or anyone you know, are keen to join the league, please join on our mailing list. NB: It is essential that you are on the list so that you are granted access to the venues.

 See you guys next week.

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Arjan in Font

Arjan de Kock's trip to the forests of Fontainebleau in France is going pretty well. He added "Ubik" 8A+ to his steadily growing list of sends, and is quite close to the 8B sit start.

Arjan has made some excellent progress on several other notorious testpieces in the area, including the 8B+ sit start to "Kheops" - which he did from the stand in December.

Monday, January 16, 2012

Micky rides the wave!

Micky Wiswedel claimed arguably his best send to date with "Point Break" 29/30 going down over the weekendin Montagu. He'd been close to success for a few sessions, but had actually given up for the day and was just going up to clean his quickdraws when something clicked and he simply cruised to the chains.
Micky on "Point Break", pic by L. Lundemo

Staying in Montagu, Marc Efune is quickly running out of routes to do at the Scoop after his ascent of "Catholic Schoolgirls Rule" 30. Only three or four remain til he's ticked off the entire crag...

Over briefly to Boven, where Andrew Pedley confirmed the downgrade of the future classic, "Raptophilia" down one notch to 31.

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Holiday sendage!

Arjan de Kock has made his annual migration to Europe for their winter and kicked things off by sending "Kheops" 8B, a project from last year in Fontainebleau.

South Africa's living legend, Paul Brouard, paid a brief visit to the boulders of Topside and managed a repeat of "Black Hawk Down" 8A+ and "Cloverfield" 8A at The Cinema, both on the same day in a single session. Check out his send of "Black Hawk Down" using some cunning new beta:

Andrew Pedley returned home from a few months in the jungle and wasted no time getting back to action with a fast ascent of "Anduril" 30/31 at Chosspile. Later in Oudtshoorn, he sent "Mr Incredible" 31, onsighted "Hardplay" 28 and flashed "Going Going Gone" 29.

A handful of South African climbers (James Smith, Brian Weaver, Marijus Šmigelskis, Andrew Porter, Paul Bruyere and Dave Tapp) were invited by the Nigerian government to compete in a climbing competition at the MARE Festival on the granite domes of Idanre. Although the competition turned out to be more for demonstration of what climbing is about than an actual fair contest, it lay the foundation for future climbers to come visit the fruitful area with a lot of potential for mid to big wall climbing on fairly good rock. Check out Brian's report here, and Andrew's here.

A bunch of climbers spent New Years in Montagu. Marijus Šmigelskis was among them and he managed to get the second known ascent of "Duende" 32 on his second attempt.

Matt Bush has been spending a fair amount of time at the granite boulders of Llandudno and was well rewarded with the first ascent of "The Love Project" 8B. The line climbs out a cave via a series of compression moves on slopers and crimps.

News from further afield, Edvinas Šmigelskis, who lives in Austria these days, used the cool winter temps to dispatch his first 8B by making the second ascent of "The Gateway". Check it out:

Friday, January 6, 2012

Big update coming next week!

Sorry for the radio silence folks, team Cutloose was on holiday like the rest of you! We'll be filling you all in with the news of the past few weeks in just a few more days.

In the meantime, check out this little clip of Jimbo Smith and Marijus Šmigelskis bouldering at Echo Valley in Topside a few days after their return from their Nigeria trip...