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Chris Sharma Turns 40 Today, Happy Birthday!

He was the first climber to redpoint 5.15b with Jumbo Love and now lives in Spain

Rock climbing legend Chris Sharma turns 40 today, April 23, 2021. He’s known for being the world’s first climber to redpoint 5.15b with California’s Jumbo Love in 2008, the second to climb a 5.15a with Biographie in 2001, and the second to climb 5.15c with La Dura Dura in 2013.

Sharma also established the world’s first 5.15a deep water solo with Es Pontas 2007, and first 5.15b deep water solo with Alasha in 2017. In 2015, he opened the Sharma Climbing BCN gym in Barcelona, and in 2019, he opened one of Europe’s largest climbing gyms in Madrid.

Sharma’s send of Biographie 5.15a in France was at the time considered the first 5.15 ever climbed. However, in 2008 Adam Ondra repeated Open Air at Austria’s Schleier Wasserfall, a route first done by Alex Huber in 1996. Huber graded it 5.14d, but Ondra said it’s 100 per cent 5.15a, which made it the first ever climbed.

“Climbing has been my life since I was 12 years old, and has allowed me to discover the most beautiful places in the world,” Sharma said. “My specialty is hard new routes. This pursuit provides me with concrete goals in life and allows me to channel my energy. It’s my own personal way of being a part of society. I think it’s really important in my progression for climbing to stay excited and feel like you’re doing new things, and not get stuck in a rut.”

The 2008 film King Lines is one of the best rock climbing films of that decade, you can watch it here. It follows Sharma through various climbs around the world and offers his reflections of his past, climbing and life. Happy 40th birthday, Chris!

King Lines Trailer