Mallorca DWS Climbing Guide for Newbies

All the deep water soloing questions you have, but can’t find answers for. Climbing level, safety, chalk, wet shoes, and more. Read on! Every year, Rockbusters organise a DWS trip to Mallora. Book yours here.  Deep water soloing has a long tradition not only in Mallorca, but all over the world. It’s always been a very niche activity, but as pointed out by the father of Mallorcan DWS, Miquel Riera, people have been climbing sea cliffs for as long as […]

Flow, climbing, and optimal human performance

Imagine it’s last day of your climbing trip. You’ve managed a few good sends, but there’s still one unclimbed project remaining. You’re trying your best, but you can’t put the moves together. You should have sent in your previous session. The frustration builds up, and a sense of disappointment creeps in despite your best intentions not to be childish. The boulder is some ten moves long and you’ve fallen off every single one, even the easy finish. The crux is […]

The Rocklands fever: How not to climb V10

Rocklands in South Africa. A bouldering paradise discovered in 1996, which in the last decade has quickly become one of the world’s hotspots for hard rock climbing. Elaborate shapes of orange sandstone litter the nearly deserted, rugged landscape. As the South African winter brings cold temps, low humidity and blue skies, boulderers from all over the globe flock towards Cederberg, the official geographical name of the region. Most of them are not your average climber and it almost feels like […]

Bouldering in Prilep, Macedonia

We travelled to Macedonia exactly a year ago and I regret not noting the details of our trip as many have fled my memory since. It was definitely a fun microadventure and one I wholeheartedly recommend if you find yourself roaming around the Balkans. Expect being ridiculously hot and most of the time lost. __________ On the border between Bulgaria and Macedonia the queue of trucks stretched for a good kilometre or two. There were only a few passenger cars crossing […]

The Fontainebleau Pillow Book

It’s been so long since I wrote my last post and there so much going through my head that I don’t really know where to start. Instead, I’ll start in the very middle of all the ideas that I had, just note down the most important points for you to consider. I call it the Fontainebleau Pillow Book because it all relates to the six weeks we spent in France and because I’ll follow the literary example of Sei Shōnagon, […]

#OWA: Why Female Focused Adventure Still Matters

❄A guest post by Olivia Kefauver, Outdoor Women’s Alliance New England Grassroots Team Leader❄ At thirteen, I was standing in the stern of a canoe wielding my plastic paddle at a cargo ship slowly passing across the St. Lawrence River with five other girls screaming into the wind. As pirates we were (naturally) threatening to commandeer it, but after five days canoeing through the rivers of New York State, powered by nothing more than our own bodies, we had bigger […]

Getting Stuck on “Zippatrocity”

I was first introduced to the most esoteric of grit classics by my friend Martin during a brief time when I lived in Sheffield. Martin had been projecting “Zippatrocity” for a few years already, and convinced me to go out with him to the Cowperstone. After a quick lesson in taping I begun to rather ineffectively wedge my body parts into the crack. The first part of the traverse was seeping, but the second, easier half seemed quite inviting. I enjoyed […]

5 Epic Winter Vacation Spots for Climbers

❄Guest post by Rachel O’Conner❄ I feel like I blinked and this year was over. Did we really get 365 days? I demand a recount. But as I convince myself to come to grips with the fact that this year is ending, it’s also time for me to make my annual bucket list. It’s not your typical bucket list, as you might have guessed, but it’s one that I check off before the year ends. Hey, who knows how long we […]

The Zen Art of Climbing Projects

Let’s get this one out of the way: I don’t know much about long term projects. The most sessions I spent on a boulder problem is six*, both on ‘Papa Jango’ (7B/C), which I managed to top out, and on ‘The Green Traverse’ (7A), which still eludes me (I even managed to fall from the easy finishing mantle). But what I know very well is the intense, internal battle that happens when you can’t make it happen despite feeling like […]

When a Pulley Snaps: The Honest Account

It’s a tale we’ve all heard before. The dreaded sound of a popping tendon, hollow and sharp as a snapping twig, that puts you out of the game for weeks, months, and sometimes even longer. It can happen to beginners insisting on playing on the fingerboard too early, intermediates overzealous on the campus board, and even to pros projecting away on their super futuristic lines. It’s almost inevitable, a normal part of our sport, but we fear it like nothing […]

Born to be a Nomad

Today again all of my possessions, including two bouldering mats and four summer tyres, have to fit in my car. It’s a very small car. That’s the third time this year that I’m moving everything. My flatmate left some two hours ago aeady for the first day of ski touring this winter. Newly covered in snow, Chamonix looks amazing. I wish I could stay. Yesterday was my last day in the office. For six months I worked for EpicTV. I […]

Magic Wood Guide For Newbies

With Font being all slopey and Albarracin all reachy, crimpy and overhanging Magic Wood sounded like the promised land.  (Scroll halfway down the post to get to the meaty ‘how to get there’ and ‘when to go’ part.) All my essentials (including camping gear and some food to avoid paying through the nose in Switzerland) got stuffed into my bouldering mat, which then got wrapped in cling film and gaffer, with only shoulder straps sticking out. With this well formed […]

The Vertical Kilometre

I’m not a runner. Actually, I really dislike running. Jogging in a city is almost as bad as on a treadmill, and I despise both. But going up a hill or a mountain, now that’s a different thing! Le Brevent can be seen  from my balcony in Cham, but the 2525m summit is too ambitious a goal for a quick, after work hike. Its ‘Vertical Kilometre’ is, as it turns out, is just perfect.   To classify as a ‘Vertical Kilometre’ […]

Spring bouldering in France

We drove from London and through the Eurotunnel, arriving in Fontainebleau in the early morning hours. It was grey and wet, and felt icy. Brown leaves gave the forest an autumnal look. Putting our tent up we were shivering with cold. We had a nap, and when I woke up first, I walked from the still empty campsite to the town. It’s a short walk over the river and by a ruined castle. In the boulangerie they refuse to speak […]

Snakes and Ladders and Tunnels

The first time I heard about Snakes and Ladders was about two years ago. All of my male friends went for a stag do to Wales, and I wasn’t allowed to join for the fear that my idea of fun would be different to theirs. (They ended up cycling in the rain naked, with an inflatable sheep gaffer taped to the groom’s back, so maybe they were right…) The weather for their trip was bad, and they ended up doing […]

The Scotland road-trip

The road through Glen Clova is rather narrow and grouse are dodging the car’s wheels every five minutes. Andy’s driving slowly but it’s still pure luck that we missed a fat, suicidal bunny. On my first trip to Scotland I was expecting some weather but the skies are blue and it feels like the height of summer. Or at least it looks it through the car’s windows. We will have about three hours for bouldering before we have to head […]

A few words about PSICOBLOC

It was already past one o’clock when we arrived at the beach in Cala Barques and the temperature was searing above thirty five degrees centigrade. We sat heavily under a tree to devise a plan. Coming to Majorca without a car and with nobody to tell us where to go never seemed like a worse idea. After a somewhat unsuccessful day at Portocolom, which involved hours long search for the crag and being chased down a steep cliff by a […]

Tatra Mountains lesson – part II

When my dream of climbing in the Tatra Mountains finally came true in September last year, it was a real dream team trip.  My predominantly bouldering partner and an indoor climbing me among 8000ft tall unpredictable granite peaks was like asking for trouble. Although in the beginning it was going quite well, we did spend eight hours on a six pitches route that can be done in under three hours. But taking into account the weather (hail storm) and the […]

Tatra Mountains lesson – part I

Allow me to entertain you today with the first part of a rather lengthy story of failure and success. A story of how my partner and I got ourselves into a pretty bad mess. And how we got ourselves out. It goes something like this: Every now and then (or, let’s face it, pretty much all the time), I feel this strong craving to go back to the High Tatras. These Alpine style peaks belong to the Carpathian range and […]