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Alex Huber on Fire: Free Solo and New 5.14s

Alexander Huber recently completed three bold accomplishments in Europe: a 400-meter free solo–climbing unroped both up and down–of the Swiss Route (5.10c) on the Grand Capucin, and two new ground-up 5.14a routes in the Tyrolean Alps.

The Grand Capucin is one of the most technically demanding peaks to summit in the French Alps. Ropeless, Huber ascended and descended the Swiss Route, which involves 300 vertical meters of rock climbing, up to 5.10c, and 100 vertical meters of couloirs. Huber’s downclimb has few precedents, and some have noted the significance of this accomplishment with regard to Paul Preuss’s purist claim during the Mauerhakenstreit that all climbs should be downclimbed via the same route taken to ascend. (Read more about Alex Huber’s free soloing accomplishments in the July 16, 2008 Weekly Feature.)

Huber also established two difficult sport climbs in Tyrol, Sansara (5.14a) and Feuertaufe (5.14a). Of the latter, Huber said, “This seven-pitch climb is really wild. The crux move is some 7 meters above the bolt and therefore this route could be well the most challenging sport climb in the Alps.”

More information about these ascents will be published in NewsWire when it becomes available.

Sources: Alex Huber, Steve House, Lutz Bormann