Luca Zardini frees "The Big Mother" 8c+/9a at Erto, Italy
The Big Mother 8c+/9a strong contender for the hardest route in Italy
|Â Â The Italian Luca Zardini has climbed The Big Mother 8c+/9a. Situated in the wildly steep Erto, this is a strong contender for the hardest route in Italy. |
The Big Mother is a continuation of "The Last Way" and leads into "Mocio". The Last Way was originally graded 8c but turned into an 8c/c+ after an essential foothold broke off. Mocio is an 8b extension of the 8a mega-classic "Pole Position".
Zardini, who required two weeks to link the two routes, had this to say:
"The Big Mother is definitely the hardest route Ive ever climbed. Its really varied: the first 15 moves are physical and intense on O.K. holds, then theres a difficult and precarious clip, followed by ten small edges that lead to the routes only rest. It then joins Mocio and continues up its technical and pumpy grey streak."
Â Â Zardini's Spring
A serious finger injury last year forced Zardini to take some time off climbing. He came back in force by teavelling to France in May. A visit to St. Leger du Ventoux, Verdon, and Ceuse, resulted in numerous 8a and 8a+ onsights and and various 8b and 8b+ redpoints.
A trip to Orpierre (France) in July resulted in a one day, 5th attempt ascent of "Mission Impossible" 8c.
Â Â The route
Name: The Big Mother
Steep overhang followed by a technical second section.
Â Â Italy's hardest
L'Avaro 8c+/9a, Tetto di Sarre, Valle d'Aosta
Les Sindacalistes 8c+/9a, Cornalba
The Big Mother 8c+/9a, Erto
Luca Zardini on The Big Mother 8c+/9a, Erto, Italy
Photos by Massimo da Pozzo
Read PlanetMountain's interview with Luca Zardini