Dave Graham stayed in Ticino for months and devoted himself to his numerous old projects in Val Bavona. His last coup is the first ascent of Boulder Euclase (8C +).

A whopping 17 years ago, the American discovered Dave graham the boulder Euclase im Val Bavona. Since then he has tried again and again on the line, which he describes as one of the most difficult of his career after his first ascent in April.

«It's one of the most technical climbing lines I've ever seen. The boulder required all of my toe-hook, heel-hook, kneebar and kick techniques - more than any boulder I've climbed in my life."

Dave Graham invested ten sessions alone to climb the individual moves, just as many sessions were then necessary to optimize the transitions and string together the 19 moves and four knee clamps. There were to be ten more sessions before the ascent.

"It's a labyrinth of holds and structures, all perfectly arranged on the rock."

Dave Graham inspecting Euclase (8C+) in Val Bavona. (Picture Alizée Dufraisse)
Dave Graham climbs Euclase (8C+) in Val Bavona. (Picture Alizée Dufraisse)

Unexpected inspection in the worst possible conditions

During the 30th session, Dave Graham came closer to the boulder than ever before. Shortly before the top, on the very last train, the forty-year-old fell and thus missed the long-awaited first ascent. Summer has already arrived Tessin, and Graham had almost written off the project.

In addition to the high temperatures and the risk of an approaching thunderstorm, he was confronted with a deep cut in his index finger, which he got at the three-finger hole at the key point. Everything spoke against Dave Graham.

«I've never felt like all my experience as a climber was condensed into a single moment. But on the day of the ascent, I got pretty close. I had one chance with the weather and one chance with my finger."

Dave Graham inspecting Euclase. (Picture Alizée Dufraisse)
Dave Graham inspecting Euclase. (Picture Alizée Dufraisse)

Dave began to climb, braved the uncertainties, ran through all sequences flawlessly and confidently climbed Euclase on April 20, 2022. Euclase is the seventh boulder in the upper eighth French grade that Graham climbed last Ticino season. Here is his ticklist:

Dave Graham commits Axinite (FA, 8B+)

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Credits: Cover picture Alizée Dufraisse