giovedì 19 giugno 2014

Spring happenings!

Hello everybody!
Summer is actually here, temps are growing and it's defenitely time to move in higher altitudes to find good conditions for climbing!
But first I will give you a quick recap about what happened during this past spring season!

The main reason of my trip in the UK was the CWIF bouldering competition in Sheffield. I got an invitation to represent The Climbing Works gym team aka Team WAD togheter with Rustam Gelmanov, Alex Megos and Melissa Le Neve!
Of course we won the team race being almost unbeatable!...
The Event has been great, good atmosphere, good people and very good boulders. I think I climbed well during the various rounds and managed to get a final 3rd place after Frenchman Tito Calyron and Alex Megos!
 After the comp me and the Italian team, Stefano,Riccardo and Marco, we stayed around for a full week of climbing in the Peak District! The weather was decent without much rain. We visited some of the classic gritstone areas and spent a couple of days on the limestone too.
 The highlights of the short trip were:
- The Ace 8b in Stanage, super classic by Jerry Moffat
- Mecca 8b+ in Raven Tor, first 8b+ in the UK
- Climbing on the first 8c+ in the world Hubble

Aosta Valley never stop to suprise...
I remember walking between these boulders on a lazy day a few years ago, without giving too much attention about the real quality of the lines...
When we came back this spring, with a more careful eye, we realized the real potential of the area! We kept coming back several times before the heat came in and brushed many great boulders...
Since my friends were more focused on cleaning and climb the moderates I spent my time trying to open some harder projects!
Two of them are real world class problems:
Incidente a Glasgow 8a+
Gabri Moroni - Incidente a Glasgow from rivoli on Vimeo.
Chi Tocca Muore 8a+
Gabriele Moroni_Chi Tocca Muore from rivoli on Vimeo.

After 3years off I decided to come back to the competition world.
I really wanted to see how far I could go with some serious training and see if I still had the right level to climb with the best competitors in the world.
But first I had to be selected in the national team. So I competed at the first Italian Bouldering Cup in Rome.
I had to do all the rounds since I had no points in the national ranking. It was a really tiring day but finally I managed to win the comp and got my spot in the national team!
 First World Cup I took part in was held Grindelwald, Switzerland.
Qualifications went well, I was a bit nervous and insecure on the first couple of problems but then I managed to relax my nerves and finally sent all the boulders but one and secured my place in the next round.
The day after was much better mental-side. I was already happy of being in semifinal on my first "come back" competition!
I felt physically good during my climbing but I made some mistakes on the tricky boulders. At the end of the round I finished 3 of the 4 proposed boulders! Not bad.
I had to wait until the last climber climbed the last boulder to know if my performance was good enough to be in the finals but at the very last go before the alarm rang Jan Hojer topped his last boulder and secured his place in the final. That meant I ended my competition in 7th place, just one spot out of the finals!... Basically the difference between me and the 6th qualified finalist was just a single attempt to top a problem... What a shame!
I was a bit desolated but at the same time glad and proud about how the competition went! I was again in the top 10 competitors and with the extremely high level of the World Cup athletes nowadays I think it was a really good final result!
Next World Cup round was just one week later in Innsbruck, Austria.
There is not much to write about this comp... Because since the warm up for the qualification round I felt in horrible physical shape. No power, not reactive, I had two splits on both the medium fingers so I had to climb with tape on and my skin was sweating so much...
Qualification round was really hard, other guys said one of the hardest in the last years. I was barely able to flash 2 problems and still managed to pass the turn 6th in my group.
This gave me a bit more confidence for the next day. But semifinal was personally a real disaster. I felt worse than the previous day and my skin was completely trashed and wet. I just couldn't stay on the holds and feel the grips.
At the end I topped the first two easy boulders like many others but I had no chance on the last two. I finished my comp in 17th place...
Not a very good result but still in the first 20(semifinal).
 Next WC I will take part in will be Laval,France in a bit more than a week! I still have a few more training sessions before leaving so I hope to get into great shape by this important date...

I didn't plan the traditional Franken spring trip this year... due to other obligations, trainings for the competitions and other stuffs.
One day, checking out the last Alex Megos' ascents on the internet, I got the Call!
The desire to climb in the Frankenjura was just too strong that some minutes later I sent a text message to my usual Franken partner Ema... Are you free next week?
Of course he was and we quickly organized the trip togheter with two other good friends, Andrea and Marco!
Since this was their first time in the area, we climbed in different cliffs every day without a real program or projects!
It was a great week and despite the poor weather, we climbed alot and everybody really enjoyed the trip!
This time I couldn't focus on one single project, I wanted to take my friends on the best sectors, so I climbed on "easier" routes from 8b to 8c+ such as Apollofalter 8b/b+, Linie 1 8b/b+, Ronin 8b+/c and Hattori Hanzo 8c+!

Lately I made some two days trips in Arco!
First time this spring was right after the WC in Innsbruck on the journey back home.
As I said before I was a bit pissed off about my performance at the comp so I needed a couple of days on the rock to get back in the right mood.
The two days I spent here both I climbed in Nago. Last year Markus Bock bolted some beautiful short routes on a big boulder just below the main wall.
I already climbed some of his creations last year. One of them was Ghost Rider 8b+, which is a variation of the main line, Warbeast 8c.
This time I quickly sent Warbeast on my second attempt and started trying the hardest route, so far, on the boulder, No Hope Goat Farm 8c+ that Markus opened last winter!
This route starts with a really hard 10moves boulder problem with a very hard clip followed by other 20moves of 8a.
Second day on the route I was feeling good and after a few failed attempts in the first part I managed to pass the hardest part and keep it togheter till the chain!
The next two trips I made to Arco were actually the last two weekends...
First weekend was really warm, so we decided to go climbing in a crag just above Rovereto. I was pretty excited to go there and check out Back Road, a 9a Adam Ondra opened in april.
I spent the day in good company and togheter with Silvio Reffo, despite the warm temps, we were able to find all the betas and do the moves!
The route is amazing. It is about 20meters long but very bouldery at the top. The first part is an already existent 8a+ to a first chain followed by a 12moves sequence of 8a+ boulder with some bad holds and feet.
The next day we went to Narango hoping to find better conditions but the temps were even higher.
I tried a couple of times the last route I was missing there, an 8c/c+ from Cristian Brenna called Natural Present but it was incredibly warm for my tastes so I stopped climbing and saved the energies for the next day training session...
During the week I kept checking the weather forecasts for the weekend as it seemed like temps were going to drop significantly!
So I decided to drive to Arco again and try my chance on the two routes I tried the previous weekend.
Saturday morning I was under Back Road again! Conditions were one million times better than last saturday so I immediately got psyched! After a couple of warmup goes to try the sequences I felt in great shape and ready to give some serious attempts!
Next go was really good and promising. I got to the last boulder but I couldn't get the mono crimp hold right and fell.
After a good 40minutes I gave another attempt climbing perfectly. I got the point where I fell before feeling very good but in an adrenaline rush and having too much confidence I forgot to move a foot on a higher foothold so I got stuck for a few seconds and eventually dropped off without even being really pumped or tired! Probably the biggest punt in my career!...
So I lowered off super pissed off and disappointed.
After a good hour of break I decided to give one last A Muerte go.
I felt more tired but I tried to give my best not wasting too much energies. With no mistakes I got to the crux and everything was dialed perfectly... I was feeling less strong than before but I gave 110% on every move! I got to the point I forgot to move the foot before but this time I couldn't make mistakes and did the last two easier moves to the last jug!! Chain!!
Every thought and stress went away and it was only time to celebrate with friends and get ready to cheer up Italy on the soccer match with England that same night!...
After a good night out, the sunday was defenitely more chilled and relaxed. Woke up late and went to Narango. I was feeling pretty lazy that day but I knew I still had one duty to fulfill if I wanted to go back with all the homeworks done...
So it was time for Natural Present again.
One go to put the draws on and brush the holds. Next go I fell at the last hard move.
Last go best go once again, I climbed efficently and faster than the pump and finished the weekend in the right way...
I was really glad Cristian, who opened the route a few years ago, was there too cheering me and trying his project Cinque Uve 8c!
And thanks as always to all my friends from the area, the best support team I can ever have!

Until next time...

venerdì 7 marzo 2014

Winter 2014!

Hi everybody!
I left you right after my send of one of the hardest boulders I completed in my life... Insanity of Grandeur!

As I said in the previous post I was ready to leave for the traditional 2 weeks trip in Siurana and Margalef.
The trip went fairly well. I took it actually as a real vacation so I didn't leave with any specific projects or plans. Just climbing as much as possible and spending the two weeks having fun with some of my best friends.
During the trip, in between partys,cervezas,tapas and other not-so-healty stuffs I was able to send a couple of hard routes too...

- 24 Hours Party People is a very short 8c in the Laboratori sector of Margalef. Really bouldery route on small pockets. I had already tried it last year for a day and felt very tough. This time it felt much better and I could dispatch it in two short sessions! Here is the video:

- Chocolate Caliente is another 8c situated in the Grau de Masets sector of Siurana. It is another short routes but the angle and the kind of holds are different. The wall is slightly overhanging with small holds and big moves in between them. Very technical as well. The hard part is the first, about 15 moves and the crux for me was the last big lock off from a mono to a slopey pinch, where I fell 4 times. After that the route is basically over but you still have to climb about 10 meters of 7c.

Of course I tried again, like every year, my nemesis route A Muerte in the Campigui Pugui sector of Siurana. Some tries went well, falling at the last move but on most of them I fell at my nightmare move stucking the far pocket.
Then New Years came... and you know getting things done after New Years party is very difficult if you are not a teenager anymore...

Back home I started training and bouldering when the weather allowed it. 
Since the budget for trips for the first part of the year is very low the plan is to do some competitions. Possibly some Bouldering World Cups again, after a few years out of the circuit. But first I need to do some tests, like the CWIF, an international event I got invited to rapresent the Climbing Works Team aka Team Wad togheter with Rustam Gelmanov, Alex Megos and Melissa Le Neve!
Another comp I will do is the first Bouldering Italian Cup in Rome who will probably decide who is going to compete in the World Cups.
Wish me luck!

In between training sessions I had the chance to spend a few days out.
One of the primary goals of the bouldering season was to try and possibly send The Story of 2 Worlds!
This problem is an extension of the classic The Dagger and adds a crimpy and tricky 8a+ bottom part into the 8b. The day I did The Dagger I decided to give a quick look into the start and in a hour or so I had my beta figured out. I decided to start like Dave Graham did on the first ascent and exactly used his same sequence except for the move to get into the Dagger starting hold.
Since that day the weather started to suck and in a couple of months I managed to try it another couple of times with medium to poor conditions.
Then one day I decided to go to Cresciano alone.
The day was pretty good but a bit warm and humid in the morning. I tried the start a few times but the small holds felt greasy. Luckily the good north wind started to blow and conditions radically changed. Giuliano Cameroni and two Polish guys showed up and I got more psyched to try the problem again with some support and more chill atmosphere.
During this "good friction window" I gave two more tries from the start and twice got into The Dagger but both times my feet or toes slipped off!
After the second good try I felt not phisically worked so I decided to wait for the late afternoon and give one last attempt.
I setted off with a calm and fresh mind. The first part went very well and I got into the Dagger not feeling very tired. I felt strong on the rail and the toe hook was perfectly stuck on the arete.
From here I actually realized I could climb the whole boulder so I went into battle mode and started slapping and squeezing as hard as possible. The end was a real battle and I think that without the spot of the polish guys I would have not committed like this.
I was really tired at the end and with my beta the very last move to match the left hand arete before crossing to the final jug in a bit tricky and if you fall here you just land back first so thanks to the Polish guys this move felt a bit safer...
At the top of the boulder I couldn't believe I had just climbed this incredible classic boulder and project of the season! Incredible feeling one more time!

Here is a list of the problems I did during the 2014 winter bouldering season:

- The Story of 2 Worlds 8c Cresciano(CH)
- Santoku 8b Bodio(CH)
Santoku - Ticino Bouldering from Marina Cotting on Vimeo.

- Global Warming 8a+ Donnas(IT)

- I Portici 8a+ Osogna(CH)
Gabriele Moroni, I Portici from rivoli on Vimeo.

- Pure Addition 8a+ Chironico(CH)
- Jya 8a+ Chironico(CH)
- Cominciai ad Essere 8a Meschia(IT)
- Extreme Ironing 8a Cresciano(CH)
- Reve de Mario 8a Osogna(CH)

Now I'm getting ready for a last(?) Ticino's weekend before leaving next week for the next adventure in Great Britain!
First the CWIF international bouldering competition then one week on the british rocks! Let's hope for some dry weather!...

venerdì 20 dicembre 2013

Ticino Part 1!

Here I am again.
Ready to leave Italy one more time, direction Catalunya, for the traditional X-mas/New Years trip!...
It will be the usual journey with some of the best friends I have, this means lots of climbing in Siurana and Margalef, big dinners and nights out in Cornudella, New Years party, me punting on A Muerte and other stuffs like that... But I'm sure it is going to be MEGA again, like every year!

During the last weeks I spent alot of days going and back from Ticino,Switzerland trying to take advantage of the great conditions...
After a good warm up day sending the "new classic" Walk the Line and trying to get my skin used to the hard granite again, I decided it was time to start working on something harder and more challenging.
I always wanted to try an 8c boulder in the last years but never had the time and the motivation to spend more than a couple of days on the same problem. This year was different, I got psyched for bouldering again, after a couple of years mainly rope climbing.
I knew that if I wanted to have some chances to climb an extreme boulder at this grade I really had to find something on my style that suited me at the perfection. That means a pretty long boulder, resistant, a bit physical and possibly with weird moves!
My choice was a problem climbed last year from Dai Koyamada! Insanity of Grandeur 8c!
                                          photo Ikuko Serata

This problem is the lower sit start of the famous 8a+ Delusion of Grandeur wich I already climbed a few years ago!
The full line climbs a really crimpy 3mover at the beginning, really friction dependent and tensiony, at about 8a+ for my height and with my beta.
Once you do the first 3moves you get to a not so bad slot and here the easier method to climb the next sequence is to do a 180° spin around and climb through this roof with some really funky beta at about 7c untill you directly get into the harder move of Delusion of Grandeur!
The first day went well and thanks to the precious help of Martin Keller I was able to do all the moves except for the move to get the slot. After a few days of work I finally found a good beta for the bottom since Martin's beta was too morphologic for me and Dai's was too hard...
I found a micro crimp a bit lower and right from the crimp the other two guys used, defenitely worse but closer and very helpful to do a toe release just before the crux move to the slot...

The second part was dialed very well and I managed do the big link from the 3rd move to the top a coupe of times per session.

 On my 5th and final day I changed my foot beta again at the last minute, switching the always slipping heel with a more solid toe. Actually harder but more safe and less annoying.
On the send go I climbed without esitations, I had everything under control and without any error I cruised my way to the top!...
Gabriele Moroni, Insanity of Grandeur from rivoli on Vimeo.

It was a very emotional moment and defenitely one of the highlights of my career. This ascent gave me extra motivation to do more bouldering and try to climb more difficult stuffs! This doesn't mean harder graded boulders but also easier things on different (and more difficult for me) styles!
Thanks alot to all the people that supported or helped me during these days under the boulder, Simo,Max,Bazu,Bogli,Dani,Maik,Ali,Martin and many others!

After finishing this project I started trying a new one!
Right now I only had a couple of days on it, basically to climb the standing start version, but I had a great session on the bottom part too and felt very good... Let's see how it goes!

But first it's off to Spain!!...

giovedì 21 novembre 2013

Beginning of the bouldering season!

I am writing this post staring out the window, watching a big hailstorm hitting hard my hometown Novara. The temperatures drastically dropped off from 10° to 2° celsius...
Days are getting shorter and shorter and temps will soon be frigid.

I am pretty happy about my rope climbing successes this year and it looks like I won't try my project Goldrake yet this fall due to the horrible weather that strikes Northern Italy almost every day since I came back home after a couple of months climbing around Europe.
So this means it is likely the right time to switch motivations a bit and start the bouldering season.

And what better way to start off the bouldering season than with a bouldering trip?...
Albarracin sounded like a great destination for this time of the year so me and three other good friends,Max,Marco and Alice planned the trip and booked our tickets for one week of bouldering in this beautiful place!
Albarracin is a great and well known bouldering destination and defenitely one of the best bouldering spots in the world! The enviroment is beautiful with tick forests and canyons full of red sandstone blocs. The quality of the problems is just incredible and you can find all the styles of climbing and type of holds possible all in the same problem!
We have been really lucky with the weather, always good and dry and except for a couple of warm days at the beginning of the trip, we had great climbing conditions!
Of course, like every first time in a new place, I couldn't stop climbing and every day we visited a new secor or two(or three)!
I climbed alot of moderates and since I was here just for a week I decided to climb on stuffs that could take at most half an hour of my time...

Here is a list of the hardest problems I managed to climb during this trip, with my personal grades:

- Zarzaparilla 8a+ (8b on the guidebook, 1st try from the start, flashed the 8a version, tried the top sequence and sent from the start)
gabri moroni - zarzaparrilla from rivoli on Vimeo.

- Cosmos 8a
Gabriele Moroni, Cosmos from rivoli on Vimeo.

- Klem's Traverse 7c+ flash (8a in the guidebook)
Gabriele Moroni, Klem's traverse from rivoli on Vimeo.

- Zarzamora 7c+ flash (8a in the guidebook)
gabri moroni - zarzamora (flash) from rivoli on Vimeo.

- Fuerte a Muerte 7c+ (8a in the guidebook)
- El Varano 7c+ (8a in the guidebook)
- Zombie Nation 7c+
gabri moroni - zombie nation from rivoli on Vimeo.

- Revenge 7c+
Gabriele Moroni, Revenge from rivoli on Vimeo.

- Monos sit 7c flash (8a in the guidebook)
- Control de Calidad 7c flash (7c+ in the guidebook)
- Fido Dido 7c flash
- El Orejas de las Regletas 7c (8a in the guidebook)
- La Fuente 7b+ flash (7c in the guidebook)

Back in Italy I rested a few days to grow my skin back.
Last weekend I felt recovered and the skin looked perfect and thick again. The weather was good but it has been raining the days before but I was too psyched to climb after some days off...
I couldn't find anybody so I drove alone to Chironico to check a new problem from Giuliano Cameroni, Walk the Line 8a+!
I got there, tried to place the four crash pads in the right spot and immediately started to warm up trying the sequences also with the help of a rope. The problem is not really tall but the landing is a bit sketchy and falling without a spotter is not ideal.
I started giving attempts from the beginning but sometimes I felt a bit uncomfortable and just dropped off...
After a while I gave one great try and got to the last move but couldn't commit to the next hold! So I tried the last sequence with the rope again and eventually changed my beta a little bit doing a "less safe" but more efficient sequence.
Next go was the good one! I climbed well and without big problems until the last few moves. I was a bit scared but without hesitations I got the weird toe hook above the head and eventually topped it out in a big adrenaline rush!

Great problem and congrats again to Giuliano to have put up one of the best problems of this grade in Chironico!...

Well as I said before the weather is still bad but I keep my fingers crossed and hope in a climbable weekend on the Swiss granite... I'm really motivated to put some more efforts in a hard problem I just started to try on sunday...

Until the next!

lunedì 4 novembre 2013

Fall trips!

Here I am back at home(for a few days...)after a little less than a couple of months on the road!

I left for Germany at the beginning of september with my friend Ema. My plan was to spend a few days in the Frankenjura at the beginning, heading to Stuttgart to compete at the annual Adidas Rockstars bouldering competition and finally finish the month long stay back on the Franken's rocks!
First days were easy days, trying to save some energies for the weekend!
Adidas Rockstars is defenitely the best organized event of the season. All the athletes are invited and during the days of the comp everything is offered from Adidas. We stayed at the Hilton Inn Hotel just next to the Porsche Hall where the comp was held and the first evening we were all invited at the official dinner and "transported" by a huge Adidas bus!...
Qualifications were pretty hard for me. The problems were good but I couldn't climb as I wanted to... The post qualification hours have been mentally tough too since I had to wait till the end to see if I could pass the turn... For one time luck was on my side and I barely made it to semis in 20th place!
Next day was different. After a quick warmup I was feeling much better and fitter than the previous day!
The boulders were hard and nobody could climb all of them! I climbed pretty well and confident and could top only one boulder first go but I was kind of close to finish another couple of problems...
I was very happy about my climbing but having started first and having finished only one boulder I had no expectations about making it to the finals! So I relaxed,ate some food and followed on and off the rest of the semis.
After a while I started to realize that many athletes were finishing their semi with no tops or with one top in various attempts... Many of the best athletes were struggling like me on the hard problems!
At the end of the turn I was still in 4th position tied with Jorg Verhoeven so that meant I made it to the finals at my first international competition in a long time and with a pretty packed field of strong World Cup competitor! I was blown away!
The other finalists with me were Rustam Gelmanov, Jernej Kruder, Jorg Verhoeven and Dmitri Sharafoutdinov!
                                                 photo Elias Holzknecht

After some hours of waiting we were back in the isolations and ready for the show. The Porsche Arena was very crowded and the band ready to play some music during the finals!
I won't write much about the finals since actually my life in the finals have been very short...
I was very excited for it but after the first two boulders I have been eliminated togheter with Jorg and Dmitri. Basically the first boulder was too easy and everybody but one could flash it. The second one was really hard and nobody could even make the bonus...
So unfortunately the judges had to watch the semifinals result and we were eliminated by countbacks!...
A bit disappointing for me and for the other finalists but this is the competition game and I finished my adventure with a great 4th place!! This result made me realize that with some proper training and motivation, I can still compete at a high level togheter with the best international competitor and this got me psyched to compete again in the World Cups next year!...
To finish the story Jerney Kruder and Jule Wurm were the winner of the 2013 Adidas Rockstars!

Back to the Frankenjura and back to the projects I left unclimbed in the last trips!
First days were a bit about re-adaptation of the body and the skin to the sometimes sharp rock. Plus the weather was horrible and we could only climb on the semi dry cliffs, usually the ones outside the forests. But luckily there were some of them and for the first time in almost ten years and more than fifteen trips I spent some times in one of the most classic and best sectors, Holzgauer Wand!
Holzgauer is home of one of the hardest routes in the area, Classified 9a+, climbed this year by Alex Megos.
I tried the route for the first time this summer in august, on the first day ever spent in this beautiful crag. It was pretty warm and humid, the route felt totally heinous and hard and I couldn't even do the moves of the first 8b+ part.
This time, already from the first tries, Classified felt like more doable. I realized that the route suited me perfectly. The first part is pretty intense on the fingers, having a few bad pockets and crimps for about twenty moves of 8b+. Then you get to an awkward rest on two slopey pockets. The final bulge is the crux and climbs on some more horrible pockets at about 8a+ boulder.
During the first week I think I spent three days on the route and I started to make some promising links. The big problem I was dealing with was the humidity. First part was dialed very well but everytime I got to the top part it felt greasy and slippery.
                                                 photo Roman Van der Werf

So I decided to take a break from the route and wait for some better temps in the coming days/weeks.
In between tries on Classified I also managed to send some more good routes like Kate Moss 8c, He's looking at you, kid! 8c, Hansel ohne Gretel 8b and the flash of Casablanca 8a+!
During this break from Classified I went back on my last year project The Elder Statesman! This route opened by Markus Bock has been my real nightmare last year. I spent lots of days on it and felt like I could have done it at least ten times... But every time something went wrong, a slip, numb fingers, splits, bad weather, fog, too warm, too cold and so on...So it became a real mental battle that evenyually I lost.
The Elder Statesman was the main project for this trip. After some days the conditions were finally good and I was ready to give some serious tries. The attempts were going better and better falling higher every try until one day I basically climbed it to the last hard move, I did the move then fell on the next much easier move to get to easier terrain... I was really pissed off and my skin was trashed.
I decided to rest the day after and came back the next day.
I felt really good but the conditions turned bad again and the wind usually hits the wall was not there. After the warmup I tried my chance on the route but the conditions were so horrible that giving it all I could only climb to the first crux about halfway. I was even more pissed off that we left the crag immediately after I lowered off the route.
So we drove to Holzgauer Wande since my friend Ema was trying his 8a+ project Casablanca there.
After a quick warmup Ema sent Casablanca and said the friction on the rock felt good. So I jumped back on Classified and yeah the friction was okay and actually better than on The Elder Statesman.
I thought that giving a try would have been a good idea sowith no pressure I started my attempt and I got quite easily and not pumped at the rest before the headwall. I switched into battle mode and left the rest more psyched than ever. I had a huge fight risking to fall at every moment but suddently I had the final jug in my hand and the chain in front of me... I couldn't believe I had just sent Classified!!
I lived a few hours of euphoria before to really understand what I had just done... Crazy moment and one of the best days of my career!
                                                 photo Roman Van der Werf

That same night I facebook chatted with Alex Megos and told him about my experience on the route and we both came at the conclusion that in this case the grade needs a slash and 9a/a+ might be the right number for this beautiful route!
I decided to rest the day after considering that I was feeling pretty worked and I wanted to try my other trip's project Sever the Wicked Hand 9a the next day.
Sever is another great route from Markus Bock I had already tried and got close on during my trip in august. The style of this route is not the average style of the hard routes here. It is about twenty-five meters long consisting in a first ten meters 7b part followed by a really hard boulder(the crux) on small holds and pinches at about 8a boulder, then one more 7b part to a rest and a good 7c boulder on small crimps and an always humid undercling pocket!
I just needed one try to make my muscles memorize again the moves and I was ready to give some attempts from the bottom.
On the second and third try I fell on the crux but I was pretty confident that if I could make it through the first crux then I could do the route with a good dose of luck.
And it went like this, next try I managed to do the crux but got to the rest pretty pumped. I tried to stay positive and to give everything I had for the last part, struggled alot but eventually I got to the chain for my second 9a in a few days... Incredible feelings once again!
So the natural thing to do was resting the day after, recover and grow the skin as much as possible and try to send The Elder Statesman the next day.
Usually it doesn't happen but that morning I woke up with the feeling that I would have done the route that day... I was so confident and psyched, the wind was blowing cold and dry!
We got to the crag pretty early, warmed up, chilled for a while then finished the warmup trying the sequences and brushing the holds.
It was pretty cold and windy so to avoid numb fingers during the climb I heated a little stone with a camping stove and put it in my chalk bag. It worked perfectly and I easily cruised my way to the last hard move. The next move is easy but it was the move I dropped off last time. I focused 100% and went completely static! Yes! Last meters are easy and I climbed them with a big smile on my face...
One more time I couldn't believe what I had just done. Three 9a's in three days of climbing and all my projects done!

So my time in the Frankenjura was over withmy most productive trip ever! Many thanks go to my friend Ema for the support and the belays!
Of course I still have a bunch of projects so I will keep on visiting Frankenjura in the next years and I will probably come back next spring!!

Some days after I returned from Germany I was ready to bounce again, this time for The North Face Kalymnos Climbing Festival of course in the island of Kalymnos in Greece!
I've been invited from The North Face to attend the event and to take part at the Project Competition!
This is not a real competition but more like a friendly contest between some strong invited athletes on some newly bolted routes in a brand new sector!
Totally I spent one week on the island! First two days were really lazy days climbing a bit and spending the rest of the day between the beach,bars and restaurants!
Then it came the first "competition" day. The new developed crag didn't look so inspiring at first sight, due to the nature of the rock, but after climbing a couple of routes I changed my mind. Sometimes the rock was a bit crumbling but the routes were world class!
On the first day I felt horrible and unfit... I already got super pumped on the warmup and got way more pumped on the first competition route graded 7c+ where I miserably failed!
I spent the rest of the day with the feeling of being pumped and tired and couldn't recover. But I tried to enjoy the day having fun with all the other competitors and saved the day getting the flash of another comp route graded 8b on a little cave! Nice Frankenjura style!
I finished the day trying the third comp route, an 8b+ that Alex Megos just onsighted earlier in the day. It felt so hard and pumpy that I didn't think to have any chance to send it on the next day...
The next day was luckily a rest day from the competition!
The second comp day was totally different for me, I felt fitter and recovered and I warmed up on the first 7c+ comp route I fell on the other day.
After that I rested a bit and tried my chance on the 8b+... I quickly climbed the first part without getting so pumped and got to the crux. It felt like a different sequence from the other day and could connect the moves quite easily and sent the route on my second go!
Before the end of the day I tried the fourth and last comp route at around 8c. On my first go it felt so good and doable on the next try. It was defenitely the route fitted more my style, very bouldery with a fingery crux.
                                photo Richard Felderer

On my second try I messed up the feet beta and fell. Then the sun came on the route, I tried to give everything I had but the sloper on the crux felt so slippery that I fell again...
So my comp was over with a good three routes sent. And eventually finished in 5th place!
I had a blast climbing this routes and spending time at the crag and hanging out with all the other athletes! I hope to be invited again next year!...
                                           photo Richard Felderer

After the Project Competition days I had another two days to spend on the island. Due to the very hardcore after party I had to recover on the next day but on the very last day I could visit one of the best sectors called Odissey! Here I took home one more souvenir climbing the classic Sharma's 8b+ Lucky Luca Extension on my second go!...

Back to Italy I went directly to the city of Rovereto to visit some friends and climbing in the crags around Arco! Unfortunately during my two weeks stay the weather has been pretty bad, not so rainy but always cloudy,foggy and really humid.

 I came here with a route in mind. A route I tried a bit this last spring when it was still wet.
Bio-Logiko was bolted by Loris Manzana some years ago and climbed by Adam Ondra last year giving it the grade of 9a!
This last spring I tried it for a couple of days but the first boulder,the crux, was still wet. You can climb the second part starting from the 7c on the right so I got the first to send of this version at around 8b+/c!
This time the bottom crux, an 8a+ boulder itself, was perfectly dry but the conditions were giving me hard times. I was already pretty close to do the bottom crux on my first sessions back on it but eventually it took some more days to actually stuck the crux jump and send the route!
The day of the send was another humid day up at the crag, the clouds were low and the wind was wet. I decided to give it one last day of tries before going back home and preparing for my upcoming trip to Spain.
                                          photo Matteo Pavana

First two goes went bad. I got to the key pinch but it felt like soap. Then I rested for a while and gave another go. I got to the pinch and it felt slippery again but I managed to focus on squeeze the hold. Finally I stuck the jump and passed through the bottom crux for the first time! The second part was very well dialed but still a very resistent 8b+... But with a good fight I got to the top and finished an other chapter with the happy ending!! Big thanks to the Rovereto and Trento climbing community for always make me feel part of it!!
                                photo Matteo Pavana

Now I'm ready for another adventure! I'm leving for Albarracin in Spain tomorrow! First bouldering trip in a long time... Let's see what happens!

lunedì 2 settembre 2013

Post Brazil weeks!

Hey there!

After Brazil I really needed to come back in shape.
The timing was perfect since a new climbing gym in Milano had just opened! This new training facility was perfect to start again and keep me motivated for a while... So I planned a little training program to be sure to get in good shape for september.

Every week I felt like I was slowly getting back in proper shape so I decided to take some days off and drove to Frankenjura to test my form on real rock...
Usually summer is not the best season for climbing in Frankenjura but the temperatures were not too high and I could send some hard stuffs!
In more or less a week of climbing I was able to repeat "Penumbral Solar Eclipse" 8c on my first day, "Battle Cat" 8c+ and "Intercooler" 8c in the same day!
I also had some good attempts on a 9a called "Sever the Wicked Hand" and I hope to finish it off the next time...

A couple of days of rest after I returned from Germany it was back to the gym for the last weeks before leaving again!
In between training days I managed to take some days on the rock especially in a cool bouldering spot called Champorcher in the Aosta Valley.
Every day in Champorcher was good times with friends, opening new lines and trying the hard testpieces from Niccolò Ceria.
Here is a small list of the climbs I recently opened and repeated in the last days there:
- Jeezy Creezy 7a+ FA
- Minnato Prepotente 7b FA
- Può Accompagnare Solo 7b+ FA
- Brown Dampness 7c FA
- Yellow Fever 7c 2nd Ascent
- Straight Out of Darkness 7c (FLASH)  2nd Ascent
- Orange Madness 8a 2nd Ascent
- Murano 8b 2nd Ascent
gabri moroni _ murano from rivoli on Vimeo.

Last weekend I finally had the chance to check out a place I really wanted to visit since a long time, Fionnay in the Valais region of Switzerland!
The place is just beautiful and the boulders overcame my expectations. The area is not huge but every sector has its own kind of rock and style.

I felt very good during the weekend and I quickly sent some of the hard classics Fionnay has to offer.
I was really motivated to try to flash some of them but eventually it didn't happen... But I was very close on some of them. Especially on "Scarred for Life high" and "Seveso", with a bit more luck I'm pretty sure it could have been possible...
On some problems I found the given grades a little bit weird in comparison to others in the same spot. It's strange because some of these problems are opened and often repeated from some of the best climbers in the world with alot of experience in grades... But basically I don't really care since they are all beautiful and unique boulders and I really enjoyed them!
Here is the little list of the boulders I climbed on the weekend with my personal grades:
- Chute Fatal 7c+ (Given 8a+)
- Seveso 8a (Given 8b)
- Scarred for Life high 8a+ (2nd go)
- L'Eau Water Solo 8a+ (Given 8a+/b)

This is the last week of training then it's time to hit the road for at least one and a half month!
The plan is driving to the Frankenjura for a few days, then going to Stuttgart for the only comp I take part this year, the ADIDAS ROCKSTARS bouldering competition! I have no big expectations since I haven't been competing for a long time, but it is going to be a great event and I don't want to miss it!
 After the weekend in Stuttgart I will be back in the Frankenjura for three weeks trying to finish some projects I left from the last trips and send some new ones!
And last but not least, in october I'm going to Kalymnos for the North Face Climbing Festival!...

Stay tuned!...

venerdì 2 agosto 2013


Hi everybody!
A few weeks ago I came back from one of the best trips I've ever had togheter with the francobrasilian couple Enzo Oddo and Francisco Taranto Jr. We spent one month travelling in Brazil visiting the best rocks and enjoying the brazilian culture!
This time I'm not going to write a post about the experience on my blog since a longer article with some beautiful photos will be published on some climbing magazines soon!...

Guela Seca 8b+(br. 11a) FA Passa Vinte(Minas Gerais)  photo Felipe Barbosa

This little intro/presentation is taken from Francisco's website Foto Vertical:  
From 11th June to 11th July, Enzo Oddo, Gabriele Moroni and Francisco were in Brazil. Their journey started in Rio de Janeiro, a cool city with a lot of beautiful rocks to be climbed! Then they were to a National Park called Itatiaia and Passa Vinte, a big cave! Enzo and Gabriele were astonished in Itatiaia: many walls, boulders, towers and peaks everywhere! Follow them: “ Well Itatiaia is actually the best place we visited during this trip, no doubt. We are sure that with some more attention, it might become a world destination for climbing” ;-) .
Francisco is editing the film. The first release seems to be at Grenoble, at “Rencontres du Cinéma de Montagne”. Stay tuned!

Le Trou du Cul de la Tortue 8a(br. 9c) FA Itatiaia(Minas Gerais) photo Francisco Taranto Jr.

mercoledì 5 giugno 2013

What happened last month!?

Hey there!
After a big part of april in the Frankenjura area I came back in Italy just in time for the 10th annual edition of the Melloblocco event held in the beautiful Val di Mello!
This year the bouldering festival lasted ten days but I got there on thursday evening and took part only at the last three days!
As every year the atmosphere was great and thanks to the good weather during the weekend alot of people came over and everybody had a great time on the boulders and of course in the evenings!...
The "competition" boulders this year were world class! Some problems in the past editions were very contrived. This year the problems were "real ones", this means logical lines and not many eliminations!
Basically I climbed only on friday and saturday but I was able to finish 6 of the 10 proposed boulders. The hardest climbed problem was around 8a+ and has been climbed only twice from me and Stefano Ghisolfi!

During the saturday night party we even showed for the first time in public our now finished Spain film from this winter! No Siesta Spain Trip!
The response from the audience looked great and everybody seemed to enjoy it!...

 After Melloblocco I was feeling tired so I decided to take some rest. Just having fun on the rocks, spending days with friends without having projects and going with the flow!
I spent many days outside bouldering and rope climbing even if the weather has been pretty bad...
So without pressure and enjoying the days out I even climbed some hard stuffs and felt in good shape!

Here is the list of the hardest stuffs I was able to climb during the last month!
- Bibita Biologica 8c (First Ascent)  Arco
- Lapoterapia 8c (2nd Ascent)  Osso

- Dita d'Oro 8c (3 tries)  Maddalena
- La Rosina 8b flash  Maddalena
- Brown Sugar 8a+  Val di Mello

- Toy Boy 8a  Val di Mello

 - El Raton Matado 8a (2nd Ascent)  Gaby
- Special Edition 7c+ flash  Brione
- Ministero dell'Inferno 7c+ (First Ascent)  Gaby
- The Big Courier 7c+ (2nd Ascent)  Gaby
- Nona Misura Naturale 7c+  Val di Mello
- Pendragon 7c flash  Val di Mello

Now I'm getting ready for the Trip I've been waiting for several months... BRAZIL!
Stay tuned for more!

lunedì 6 maggio 2013

Frankenjura spring trip!

I just returned from another trip in the forests of the Frankenjura in Germany!
It was my 15th trip here so I have nothing more to say about the place,the climbing,the landscapes,the people... Everything in my opinion is perfect here and I feel like at home.
Finally for the first time I managed to bring other friends and for the first week we were a nice crew of 6!
Unfortunately the weather has been horrible for many days at the beginning and the rocks were really wet from all the rain and snow of this past winter.
All the routes I wanted to try were unclimbable and soaked so I had to find some dry or semi dry stuffs.
Keeping the motivation high was really hard with that weather and besides that, after a couple of days of climbing on wet holds I got two bad splits.
After a few days a big part of the crew left but me and Ema had another 10days planned! The weather finally became more sunny and stable and my two splits were healed!
 My main project for the trip stayed wet for all the lenght of the trip so I had to move the attention on some other routes.
After only a few tries of work each I was able to do  a couple of 8c+ and one 8c of course all of them estabilished from Markus Bock!
 During attempts on the harder projects I really wanted to do some classics from the 80's and possibly from Wolfgang Güllich!
Here is a list of the routes I climbed during this trip:
- Three Suns and One Star 8c+
- Sympathy for the Devil 8c+ (photos)
- Second Place is the First Loser 8c
- Kamasutra 218 8b (Gullich '86)
- Killer 8b (Gullich '87)
- Amadeus Schwarzenegger 8a+ (Gullich '86)
- Amboss 8a+ ('88)
- Melanom 8a+ ('89)
- 00 Faber 8a+ ('96)
- Engel und Bestien 8a ('85)

And here is a little trailer from my friend Matteo Pavana "The Vertical Eye" about the first wet week of the trip!

domenica 7 aprile 2013

Fast bouldering season!

Hello everybody!

As I said on the previous posts, since I got back from Spain my main interest has been training and getting ready for the trip planned in Frankenjura,Germany!
Back from Catalunya my level of resistence and fitness was very high for my standards but I felt like I had lost big part of my power.

So in the past two months I've been training mainly power! This means, besides campus boarding and some weights, alot of bouldering in the gym and outside at least once per week!
Luckily I live only a couple of hours from the best areas in Switzerland but I don't have many boulders of 8a or 8a+ yet to do...
By the way there are some beautiful pieces of rock I still have to do and here is a list of problems sent during the last weeks between Ticino and Val d'Aosta with some personal grades:

- Flash Flood 8b Brione (2nd ascent FA:Jorg Verhoeven)
gabriele moroni - flash flood from rivoli on Vimeo.

- Baby Mammoth 8a+ Chironico
- Un Ange avec des Cornes 8a+ Cresciano
- The Guilty of the Hilti 8a Brione (not sure about the grade but could be 8a+)
- Black Pearl 8a/a+ Brione (given 8a+)
Gabri_Black Pearl from rivoli on Vimeo.

- The Barbarians were Helpless 8a Chironico (seldom repeated could be 8a/a+...)
- Second Life 8a Chironico (given 8a+)
- Viva il Cavaliere 7c+ Val d'Aosta
- Cuor di Leone sit 7c+ Val d'Aosta
- Pamplemousse 7c/c+ Chironico (Flash. Given 8a)
- Orange County 7c Brione (Flash. Given 8a)
- Highway to Hell 7c Val d'Aosta (Flash. First Ascent)
- Brutalization 7c Val d'Aosta (First Ascent)
- Notte Abbastanza Buia 7c Val d'Aosta (First Ascent)

It looks like the training is starting to pay off and it's time to pack my stuffs and head to Germany... Frankenjura here I come!