The 26 year old Katherine Choong climbed the Rawyl classic last Tuesday Cabane au Canada (9a), With her recent visit, Katherine belongs to the illustrious circle of women who climbed a 9 red dot. Already a week before, she succeeded Tornado Power (8c) in Gimmelwald an ultra-hard route. We asked Katherine some questions about her first 9a (English).

When did you first try Cabane au Canada?
I tried Cabane once last year but I can not say I do not move to the upper part, which is hard for me. But as the new style of the World Cup routes changed, I did more bouldering this year and I decided to try cabane again in June 2018 again.

Why this route?
My goal this year is to send you a 9a route. In 2017 I was in Rawyl for the first time and climbed routes next to Hut so i knew that the style of the route could suit me pretty well. In addition, I really love this place, the beauty of the surrounding, the calm and the style of the routes.

How many did you invest you invest?
I don't know exactly. I think that I was something like 10 days, 2-3 tries per day. Already after a few days I was able to climb to the upper part but I was falling again and again on the dyno. It was quite hard to keep the motivation.

Katherine Choong-climbs-Cabane au Canada-in-Rawyl
Katherine Choong climbs into the Olympus of the 9a women (Bild zVg).

9a's you tried?
I have only tried Era Vella (8c + / 9a) last spring but I didn't send it yet.

What went through your mind when you clipped the chain?
I was so happy, but also relieved! Competitions didn't go so well in July, I also fell two times at the very top of Era Vella and I didn't send a lot of other route this year. I think that I put a lot of pressure on me and it was hard not to succeed in anything. So it was a huge personal achievement to clip the chains of Hut, I finally gained the confidence and the good feeling in my climbing came back.

Who was with you when you sent the route?
Jim Zimmermann, my boyfriend. He sent his own project - Paradise naturel (8b +) - just two days before and this helped me a lot. I thought: "Yes, it is possible!"

Katherine Choong in Cabane au Canada - the 9a classic in Rawyl
"I started climbing and everything went really well" - Katherine Choong on the climb through Cabane au Canada (picture provided).

When exactly did you send your project, Cabane au Canada?
3 days and stayed the 4th day (Tuesday) for filming with a photographer. But we canceled the shooting because it was raining during the afternoon. We were there so I decided to work on the moves, even if it was raining a little bit. It was my 4th day in a row of climbing, and I felt really tired on my first try of the day. For my second try, I decided not to fall in love with the first quidraw because of it. At this moment something really changed in my mind and I decided to give it another try and give it all! It was 20: 30, almost night, so I had to hurry a little bit. It was a long break, because of the World Championship in two weeks and my trip to Flatanger. I started climbing and everything went really well, the moves felt easier, I stuck the dyno and clipped the chains.

What's next?
Now my focus is full on the World Championship in two weeks. Then I will enjoy 2.5 weeks in Flatanger and then find another project. I'm really motivated to do more multipitch routes, I have not much experience in multipitch climbing and want to improve it.

Katheerine Choong on Swiss television

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Credits: Images provided - Katherine Choong


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