La Belge Anak Verhoeven réussit une voie cotée 9a+

C’est en Espagne qu’Anak Verhoeven a arraché la deuxième voie 9a+ de sa carrière. Une ligne réservée aux meilleurs grimpeurs hommes et femmes confondus.

C’est en Espagne à Oliana à une cinquantaine de kilomètres de Barcelone qu’Anak Verhoeven a réussi une voie 9a+. La Belge a terminé Joe Mama, considérée comme la deuxième voie la plus difficile jamais réussie par une femme. Dans l’histoire de l’escalade, seule l’Autrichienne Angela Eiter a fait mieux avec une 9b en 2017 à Villanueva del Rosario, toujours en Espagne.

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Joe Mama, 9a+! 😃 I came to Oliana without having a particular route in mind that I wanted to try. Arriving at the crag, I made a quick decision: Joe Mama. In the time that followed, I went through the whole process of taming a route:
Finding the exact beta that suited me. Accepting hot temperatures and wet rock. Treating painful skin and taking extra rest days. 
I quickly felt at home in the route, but it wasn’t conquered yet! There are almost no places to shake out or take a breath. The crux is intense on tiny holds, followed by move after move of body tension and endurance. Quite a project… but abandoning didn’t feel like the right option. My first redpoint attempt came and I fell high up, in the crux. Two attempts later I chose a beta change which worked: I passed the crux move shortly after. But then I started falling at the crux move again. And again. And again. I just felt blocked every time I reached that spot and couldn’t move my body up. So, it was time for another change of beta. Just one extra foot movement made the difference and I was ready to keep going! But… the end of the trip was drawing near. Only 2 more climbing days were left. And I felt so close to sending… . . Another attempt. I passed the crux this time, with my new foot beta, but I fell some moves further, on a tricky deadpoint. Nooo… Again, I had to search for one more detail that needed to be changed. And I found it. My 10th redpoint attempt and the last one of that day.
I taped a finger with a bloody cut. I felt more tired than before. But I was determined to fight. I passed the crux and the deadpoint move too. Only one more risky move awaited me, right below the chain, but I didn’t want to let go. And I stuck it!
What a feeling to clip those chains!!! . . . Most of the trip was spent on Joe Mama, but during a day off my project, I also on-sighted Gorilas en la Niebla – 8b+, a nice and long Oliana classic. Photo by @ezrabyrne 📸 @lasportivagram @petzl_official @lecomte.alpirando @xcultclimbing @climbforhim @frigyesvandenauweele #rockclimbing #oliana #lleida #catalunya #equipetapassion #lasportiva #weareclimbers #xcultclimbing

Une publication partagée par Anak Verhoeven (@anak.verhoeven) le

Chris Charma s’était lui aussi attaqué à Joe Mama il y a quelques années.

En France, on peut compter sur les frères Mawem pour lever haut les couleurs de l’escalade tricolore. L’émission Riding les avait suivis dans leur quotidien dans un reportage à revoir en replay ci-dessous.