Thursday, August 1, 2013

The legend of Gioia (8C+)

In 2008, Christian Core linked together 14 moves across a giant block of stone in Verazze, Italy.  He named this problem Gioia, Italian for 'Joy'.  From what I understand, this word describes not only Christian's feelings about finally completing what many consider to be the hardest boulder problem in the world, but also his emotional state when he found the problem after years of searching the boulders of southern Europe for the perfect problem.  Christian Core has won bouldering world cup events, and in 2003 was the bouldering world champion, yet despite all the hours he must spend in a climbing gym, it is his outdoor explorations which drive him forward. 

Christian Core on the amazing Gioia (8C+). (photo: Roberto Armando)

Late in 2011, Adam Ondra repeated Gioia after many days on the problem, giving it a 'personal grade' (and what we must consider a consensus grade) of 8C+.  In 2012, Christian repeated Gioia at night, showing the amazing power and crisp technique for which he is known. 

The video of Christian Core climbing Gioia at night can be seen HERE.

Video of Adam Ondra repeating Gioia (video link below) is incredibly interesting, especially with respect to how the two climbers approach the movement.

So why the post-hoc discussion of ascents of Gioia?  To me, it is an interesting case of what drives many climbers; the need to explore and find lines which challenge them intellectually, emotionally, and physically.  It is, I suppose, this need that drives many climbers to seek out new challenges, regardless of their level of skill, or how hard the route or problem is. Difficulty in climbing is, essentially, scale-free; the amount of effort that Adam and Christian put in to climbing Gioia might be the same effort expended by another climber to send his/her first V7. 

Until next time... Cheers!


Owen said...

yo trent, have you seen this book?

I think it might be down your alley...

Trent Hoover said...

No, but I'll check it out! Thanks Owen!