There is no doubt that standards are on the rise, climbers are sending big grades at both ends of the age-spectrum, from 61-year-old Fransisco Marin sending 5.14a to 14-year-old Kai Ligthner sending 5.14c, again.
Kai Ligthner, 14, sends Lucifer, his second 5.14c, his first being Southern Smoke.
Lucifer is an infamously difficult route first climbed by Canadian Mike Doyle in the fall of 2006. It was at one point Red River Gorge’s most difficult route. It’s been repeated numerous times. Ashima Shiraishi was the youngest to climb Lucifer when she sent it in the fall of 2012 at the age of 11. Ligthner has sent a number of 5.14s since sending his first one last March. For more on Kai, visit his DPM profile.
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Reffo Silvio sent Biologico 5.14d, in Arco.
The first ascent was by Adam Ondra. “Biologica is the true line. I tried the route for the first time last year. This year in four days I did it.” Silvio has previously done three 14ds and last month he made the first ascent of The Ring of Life 5.15a.
Loic Timmermans, 19, sent his first 5.14d.
Timmermans climbed Fabela pa la enmienda in Santa Linya last week. The 50-metre 120 move route took him one-hour to climb. “At the last crux before the anchor, I’ve never screamed on a route but on the last move, I just gave everything I had left in my body.”
James Webb on the V15 train in Magic Wood
Webb has been climbing at the top of his game Magic Wood. He sent The Understanding V15, “Somehow managed to climb it in one session. Only had six pads and one spotter but when the problem is this good you just gotta go for it when it feels right. Literally the best boulder problem I have ever climbed. The perfect line. Nice one Nalle!!” wrote Webb on 8a.nu. Webb also sent Chris Sharma’s Practice of the Wild V15, and Fred Nicole’s Entlinge V15. Webb has sent 16 boulders graded V13 and harder this month.