It seems like dramatic, last-minute sends are coming into vogue forrock climbers. First came Paul Robinson's last-day success last weekin Rocklands. Now, Norwegian climber Magnus Midtbø has managed thefirst repeat of the ultra-hard route Ali Hulk Extension SDS (5.15b) atthe tail end of his trip to Rodellar, Spain.
First done by Spanish sport climber Dani Andrada, Ali Hulk ExtensionSDS is an odd hybrid route that's half boulder problem and half sportclimb. The first half of the route climbs across a cave roof, and isusually done without a rope. Halfway through, climbers reach aknee-bar rest, where they rope up before finishing with 50 feet ofhard sport climbing.
Midtbø did the first roof wearing a harness, then clipped himselfinto a rope with a carabiner before finishing. He sent the route onhis first try of the day.
"I have never put so much time towards a climb before," he said on hisblog. "It sure payed off in the end."
Midtbø confirmed the route's grade on his 8a.nu scorecard, making itonly the second confirmed 5.15b in the world.
To give you an idea of what the rock is like around there, check out thevideo above of Chris Sharma and Dani Andrada climbing around Rodellar. UK Climbing.com also has a cool list of the other 7 routes in the world rated as5.15b/9b or harder.
-- Adam Roy