Jesse Dufton is a competitive blind paraclimber who also spends a lot of time outdoors on steep rock. He recently reported on Instagram that he climbed The Sloth HVS 5a on gear at The Roaches in England.
It’s steep and pumpy and demands a lot of endurance. Dufton was coached through the climb by his partner Molly, who gave him beta through headphones, including where to place the gear. Earlier this year, Dufton climbed Don’s Crack E1 5b and he was the 2018 national champion in the B1 category for paraclimbing in the U.K.
After Dufton climbed The Sloth, top British climber Neil Gresham cleaned the route with a blindfold on. Gresham told planetmountain.com, “Simply incomparable to anything else I’ve seen in climbing.” The Sloth was first climbed by Don Whillans in 1954 and has become a modern test-piece for those looking to push steep gear climbing.
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This route has been on my tick list for so long…and as my sight has deteriorated, I wandered if I would ever be able to do it. Well, today I did it!! It was everything I ever imagined and more..! Getting to the roof and feeling out behind my head felt pretty out there..and to turn the lip was an awesome feeling. Having @neil.gresham second me with a blindfold on to replicate the experience was ace. Massive thanks for climbing with me 👍. Really happy to have this one in the bag. A day to remember for sure! . . 📷 @neil.gresham 👍 . . @borealoutdoor @gb_paraclimbing @teambmc . . #tradclimbing #tradisrad #leadclimbing #pureclimbing #climbing_is_my_passion #rockclimbing #theroaches #blindclimber #gimpsnotwimps #paraclimbing #borealteam #bucketlist #achievement #HelmetUp