On the 30th anniversary of his ascent of Agincourt, the first 8C rock climb in France, Ben Moon embarks on a trip down memory lane to once again visit the place that played such an important role in the history of sport climbing. Watch the short film documenting this journey.
The Swedish summer was long and warm and made the climbing condition terrible. After a 2 week long trip to Ceuse I quickly realized I had to give up my dreams on Swedish granite. Instead I decided to get insanely strong for whatever outdoor project that might come up in the future. I turned into a gym rat. I got obsessed with how much weight I could add on my pull-ups and how far I could pull between the campus rungs. When autumn came I barely took notice, the summer had been feeling endless. I had created a new comfort zone and that was the climbing gym.
By the end of this summer I got a message from Andreas Andersson who is currently developing a new topo for the areas around Stockholm. He gave me the offer of trying his freshly bolted project on a crag called Bjurviksberget. I felt extremely honored. But the fact that it was a slab made me terrified, how could I apply my summer-training on such a route? Could I even stand on my feet..?
Andreas made me realise climbing isn't all about big biceps...
I headed out anyway and I finally got to breathe some fresh air again. I guess Andreas pulled me out of my indoor comfort zone and bad habits, and made me realise climbing isn't all about big biceps.
At first I got scared by the climb and its angle since I usually climb steeper routes, but challenges like this is what I like about climbing. On my second attempt I sent it, even though I had to eliminate one of the wet key holds. I had done my first FA and it was a slab. It's hard for me to give any indication about the grade since the climb was far from the style I usually climb, but I can estimate it to be somewhere about 7c...ish. But in this case i simply couldn't care less. I had challenged my comfort zone and it was thrilling.
Overtraining Syndrome (OTS) is actually a clinical syndrome and, as you can imagine, is common in athletes. Learn about the different types of overtraining, the symptoms, and how to prevent it.
The Moonboard is becoming a common sight at climbing gyms around the country. On the surface the Moonboard is just a steep training board, but behind the scenes there’s some secret sauce in the form of the app and lighting system that are used for recording, sharing and displaying problems with users all around the world.
Apps...sharing information...that smells like some interesting data! Because Ben lives just down the road from Lattice Training HQ we thought it would be fun to team up and have a look at some of the data behind the Moon Board. To kick things off Ben has kindly let us have a peek at his Moonboard logbook so we can see what he's been up to on the board!
First thing first, let's see how hard Ben tends to climb on the board!
From this distribution, it looks like Ben tends to warm up between 6B+ and 7A/+, after that the number of problems at each grade decreases suggesting that things get trickier for him from 7A/+ upwards. Given that Ben’s climbed up to 8B+ outdoors it’s interesting to note that there’s not a lot of harder problems in his logbook. It might be informative to take a look at how many attempts he tends to take on things as this will tell us a lot about the style of his sessions.
Looking at this we can see that Ben tends to flash a large proportion of the problems he tries, even at higher grades. This would explain why there’s not a lot of 8th
Just had my morning coffee and I’m already running around the house looking for my climbing shoes…found them! MoonDust check, chalk bag check, more coffee check… Crash pad? No, not today. It’s setting day, I need my drill!
I love climbing outside, however, lately I’ve been spending most of my days on route setting. It became a little bit of both passion and work and most of all, a big challenge for me. But I like a good challenge.
From summer till now, I have done quite a few trips around Europe (Germany, Austria, Spain) and US (Texas) for all kinds of setting - commercial setting, setting for training camps and competition setting. The highlight was definitely WYCH in Innsbruck in September, where I got a chance to set with Jacky Godoffe and all other setters. It was a great learning experience for me as I learnt all about route setting and also a lot about myself.
Moving onto the end of the year, I will need to squeeze in some outdoor climbing as well. Fresh air is needed every once in a while. So the plan for December is a quick visit to Slovakia to set a training camp and then another trip to the US where I have planned a short trip to Horse Pense 40. It should be really fun!
Setting in WYCH , Innsbruck (Germany)
Innsbruck setting crew