I’ve tried a route that is called “Sniper”. It´s more or less a route! 12 moves, over six meters leading to the top. Though it´s only 12 moves long it requires a weird kind of endurance. Every single move is hard and there is no possibility to rest or even catch a breath instead of getting a green or blue face. The size of the holds (which is from the beginning not very big) become even smaller the higher you climb. Everything is needed. The very obvious thing you should bring along is a lot of finger strength especially on small incut crimps but finger strength is not the only skill! The first crux sequence involves a strenuous shoulder move for your right arm. You get a kind of a good shoulder crimp far above your head and now the feet must be move on smears which enables to cross with the left hand to the first small three finger incut crimp. Due to the fact that the distance between the holds is big, Sniper is also really powerful for the entire body. You must do the shoulder move as static as possible because of you have to hit the crimp for the left hand precisely. The middle part is full of weird crimping action in combination with strange body positions and a strenuous clip. And the best comes at the end: A final throw from a skin cutting 2mm knife to a slopy crimp thing. The difficulty is to coordinate the dynamic of the move in pumped body situation.
Sniper - An Epic Journey - Fabian Christof
Since I tried these six meters the first time I felt in love with them. Yes, it´s short and we could discuss about if it´s necessary to bolt short walls like this… Anyway it´s a fantastic climb because of the combination of totally different power aspects. The crux of the route moved during the years I’ve tried it. At the beginning I hadn´t the necessary shoulder power for the first hard part but I was lighter and stronger on the crimps. Later, at the first time I came close to send it, the problem was the middle part. I didn´t found the right positions for the moves and wasted too much power. And finally, the sending nightmare was the last move from the 2mm knife. Within the years my strength switched to athletic and my weakness to small crimps. This came along with more muscles and more weight but it wasn´t a disadvantage at all! The key for my success at most of the climbs I did during the last years, was definitely to get a stronger body.
As always getting things done in the Frankenjura is a kind of gambling! During a period of three weeks trying, the conditions switched from nearly perfect on one day to completely wet on the next day. The worst experience was that I had a look late at night the day before I had the plan to try again and the conditions were amazing. Very dry air and a nice and not too cold wind were blowing. I was really keen on trying it the next day. 8 hours later I stood in front of an unclimbable route! Oh, man! We have to handle things like that all the time! And let me say: “It sucks” And kills motivation time after time. So what is the solution for that? My answer is train and train again to be prepared for the very rare good days or to climb the projects in terrible conditions. In the case of Sniper it was the second alternative. The conditions were obviously bad because the rock was humid and soaked but this is also a kind of a strange thing with climbing in this limestone area. Sometimes the friction is better if it´s a bit more humid and not cold and dry! Ok, I stop that writing now!
Here are the facts: I did my decade project and this achievement gave me a lot of satisfaction! Maybe I never tried that hard before! Who knows? I think it´s a hard climb and it deserves the grade 8c+.
I wish everyone a nice and peaceful Christmas time and a good new year’s eve!!