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Shawn Raboutou Sends Switzerland’s First V16

Colorado climber Shawn Raboutou, 20, has made the first ascent of an old project at Valle Bavona, Switzerland, which is now the only V16 in the country.

Raboutou made the first ascent of Off the Wagon Low, the low start to Off the Wagon first sent by Nalle Hukkataival six years ago.

The problem first made an appearance Dosage 3 and Dosage 4 with Chris Sharma and Dave Graham making attempts. It’s been attempted by Jan Hojer, Jimmy Webb, Niccolò Ceria and Luca Rinaldi.

Hukkataival said of the steep problem, “Basically the boulder distills down to a really hard two-move sequence followed by an easier but really nice outro.”

There are a number of V16s in the world, including Creature of the Black Lagoon, Drop a Line, Hypnotized Minds and many more.

There is only one V17 in the world and many V16s get downgraded. Why all the downgrading? Shouldn’t there be more V16s? Hukkataival wrote a blog post back in 2010 detailing his thoughts on why this apparent stalling of grade progression happened.