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2nd Ascent of Mirta V14 - Carlo Traversi

2nd Ascent of Mirta V14 - Carlo Traversi
July 25, 2012 - 

Yesterday, for the first time, we made the epic 1 hour, straight uphill, death hike to check out Paul Robinson's unrepeated 8B+/V14, Mirta.  The boulder sits directly above our home in Muizenberg, atop a large mountain bouldering area known as Topside.  With crashpad, camera, tripod, and climbing gear in tow, the massive uphill stairway did a pretty good job of taking most of my energy.  Luckily the views from the top are some of the best I've seen so far down here.  Mountains, ocean, and the Cape Flats extend majestically from the base of the hill into the horizon.  The landscape and the cool breeze did a fine job of rejuvenating me and I spent some time warming up, allowing the chalk to settle into my hands, and feeling the holds on the boulder.  It was evident from first glance that Mirta is a world class bloc.  An obvious starting hold followed by a series of long pulls on perfect incut edges out an overhanging wall.  It's the type of problem we dream of finding everyday we explore the vast world of untapped boulders out here in South Africa.  The moves and holds have a certain level of uniqueness that is appreciated as well.

After warming up, brushing the holds, and sequencing the moves, I settled my hands into the starting hold for a flash go.  It began well, felt solid, until I fumbled the edge on the crux deadpoint.  Unfazed, I quickly sussed out the other moves and a prepared for another attempt.  On my 3rd go from the start, I tried hard and made it to the end sequence before an unexpected foot cut left me short of the top.  I was bummed, but relieved in a way, knowing that the problem, though difficult, was possible for me.  None the less, my skin was not so happy and the countdown began.  Another hour of close efforts followed.  A dry fire off the crux left me with a large blood blister on the tip of my middle finger and all of my other tips were progressively getting more and more pink.  As the sun dipped behind Table Mountain in the distance, I knew that the time to execute would have to be soon.  I pulled on from the start and managed to stick the crux move solidly.  This time I managed to keep it together through the difficult middle and finish to top out my hardest problem of the trip so far.  It felt great to pull it together and execute on such a remarkable boulder problem as Mirta, especially in a day.  This weekend we are heading up to Rocklands to experience some more of the well known classics.  Stay tuned. 

Photo credit: Chasing Winter Film

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