The route Neanderthal was for the Czech climber Adam Ondra a kind of love-hate. Numerous attempts wrestled him from Chris Sharma first off the route until he was finally able to announce the passage a few days ago.
"The route was kind of a hateful object, which I can't say about many routes," says Adam. "Not because Neanderthal is not a cool route, but because I have tried it so often without success. "
The chronology of unsuccessful attempts
2011 - Adam tried the route in one day and got to the second dynamo. The next day the route was wet and therefore no longer climbable.
2015 - Adam Ondra designed the route for about a week, but did not manage the Dynamo. It was impossible to trigger the dynamo out of the hole with two fingers, and he does not bring three of his fat fingers into the hole.
2017 - Adam finds better knee clamps, somehow gets three fingers in the hole and holds the dynamo in on the first day of his stay Santa Linya, Unfortunately, he fell further up a no-hand rest, because he breaks out a kick. The remaining five days he tries the route again and again without success. On a second visit in the same year makes him an end to the flu.
"Maybe I was just too weak on the first trip in 2017."
2019 - Adam comes back to Santa Linya and holds the dynamo on the penultimate day of his stay, but falls further up because of a flash pump that he caught. On the last day came the long-awaited ascent and with it redemption. In the best weather, Adam Ondra manages the third ascent of the Neanderthal route. The Austrian took the second ascent Jakob Schubert in December 2018.
As a side project Adam also climbs the 9a + Catxasa
It seems a bit like a side note: The successful ascent of the Catxasa (9a +) route four days before the success in Neanderthal. Maybe it has to do with the fact that Catxasa was always just a "side project" for Adam, as he himself says.
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Credits: Cover picture Art of Route