Adam Ondra frees new 9b at Flatanger in Norway

At the Flatanger cave in Norway Adam Ondra has made the first ascent of Iron Curtain 9b.
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Adam Ondra attempting the upper crux on the new project at Flatanger in Norway.
Seb Bouin

Yesterday in Norway's massively steep Flatanger cave Adam Ondra freed Iron Curtain, yet another 9b which might lead some to think that this grade has become a sort of "standard" for him.

"9b standard for me? I wish! No, 9b is still a really hard route, certainly not something I would do in an afternoon without too much effort. To tell the truth with Iron Curtain I thought the process would be quite easy and quick. I felt super strong, on the way to Flatanger I had just fired a 9a project called Purgatory at Hell (an area close to Trondheim) on my 2nd go, and the first day on Iron Curtain felt good. But how wrong I was!

Bad conditions arrived and I discovered that the crux holds were completely wet due to condensation. Conditions improved, but were far from perfect and it's hard to climb a route this hard in bad conditions, there is no margin for mistakes and I kept making them... In the end, after some days trying, an extremely strong wind made me go up into the cave yet again despite wanting to take the afternoon off and I sent this perfect line.

It was very important to free this route in order to move on to the next, even harder projects. Three of them are 9b+ or more and currently I'm working on one which is 60 meters long, where 40 meters of 9a are followed by explosive and bouldery 9a. All together it is going to be super hard, somewhere in 9b+ region and I can't really tell if it is possible for me yet... But I can't wait to see how things develop!"

by Adam Ondra

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