We were all affected by the drastic measures taken by our governments. So does the climbing professional Jakob Schubert. Now Jakob tells about the time in the lockdown and his return to the rock. The video is available after the post.
A contribution by Jakob Schubert
Since I can remember, there are a maximum of 14 consecutive climbing-free days in my life in the course of a year. Now it was 35 days in a row without climbing! There is not only a lot of time for creative training methods around your own house, but also to work on projects in the Innsbruck area and a new video.
The images of the deserted city still seem very strange, but luckily they are already a thing of the past. In addition to handstand and campus board training, I also kept my eyes and ears open for new, difficult routes and boulders during the quarantine period; not only abroad, in times like these especially in Tyrol.
Two dream boulders in the Zillertal
The two boulders "Traumschiff" and "Nihilist", for example, have been on my wish list for a long time. I tried the dream ship a year ago and wanted to lock it now; I heard from the nihilist, on the other hand, that it was one of the best and most difficult in the Zillertal. Both are rated 8B +.
I already knew the first part of the new route on the Jochberg and I knew that the line would climb brilliantly because it leads diagonally through the entire overhang using logical rock structures. This has now resulted in the first ascent 'Walk the Line' (9a).
I wanted a name with 'Line' because the route has the same entry as two others that are already called 'Line', and then there is the unique Johnny Cash song 'I Walk the Line', so it fits very well .
A good year ago, during a photo session with Heinz Zak, the first contact with the White Rose route at Schleierwasserfall in Going am Wilden Kaiser. At that time I didn't really think about climbing through, but I noticed that the route that Alex Huber had already opened in 1994 is one that suits me very well. I just had to pick it up! After checking out twice and one failed attempt, I successfully climbed the route on April 28th. After Alex Huber and Adam Ondra, I am the 3rd to have succeeded.
The next time I meet Alex Huber, I would like to congratulate him again on this ascent. It is very impressive that he was able to climb such a difficult tour back in 1994. I was only three years old at the time.
The best feeling of the past few weeks?
Was the climb the best feeling in the last few weeks? Hard to say. White Rose was now no better than either Boulder or Walk the Line; It's a mega tour and that's why the feeling was extremely good, but what makes a 'Perfecto Mundo' climb even more special is when it is completely at your limit. The routes of the last few weeks have been extremely cool, but I didn't have to get the most out of myself.
What was important after such a long time: To climb again. It wasn't so much about the ascent, but simply to be outdoors again, to climb, to be out with friends and friends, to live and enjoy it.
The first contact with the rock was very special. Out of sheer joy of finally feeling stone under my fingers again, I immediately forgot my snack, i.e. bread, banana, apple and bars. No matter. It was great to finally be able to do what you love to do again; especially if you weren't allowed to do it for a month and a half before!
Feet and hands certainly suffered the most on the first few days of climbing. The feet in particular are no longer used to being stuck in tight climbing shoes and it becomes uncomfortable a lot faster. But after two or three days it's okay again. It took a little longer with the hands. It's always a little different in Halle and Fels anyway. It's even more intense on the rocks and since I was only out and about, the skin had to get used to it. Restraint is called for in the first few days so that the skin builds up faster.
Keyword sun. Since we climbers are not out in the sun that much, that's not an issue. When climbing, you choose extra shadow areas because the good conditions are where it is cooler and the sun does not burn directly into it.
Meanwhile, something like everyday life has returned. Thanks to a special permit, we have been able to train again in the hall for a few weeks now. Not as often as I normally would - just three times instead of five - but that's a good compromise between training and rock climbing.
What I miss a lot, however, are the competitions that can compete and the foreseeable goals for which you are specially prepared. Of course, that also takes some pressure off, because you don't always have the next best performance in mind.
What is unusual, however, is that I am not traveling. When there is no competition, I usually go to Spain, for example, to try out difficult routes. I'm just not used to being at home for so long, even if it's an exciting experience.
Video: Jakob Schubert about the lockdown and his first ascents on the rock
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Credits: Images Alpsolut, text Jakob Schubert