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Melloblocco 2016 day 3: Charles Albert climbing barefoot as usual, even on the rough Val di Mello granite
Photo by OpenCircle
Charles Albert climbing barefoot at Fontainebleau in France
Photo by Neil Hart
Charles Albert climbing barefoot at Fontainebleau in France
Photo by Neil Hart
Charles Albert below La révolutionnaire, possibly the first 8C+ boulder problem in Fontainebleau
Photo by archive Charles Albert

Charles Albert at Fontainebleau climbs world's second 9A boulder problem

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At Fontainebleau in France Charles Albert, climbing barefoot, has established No Kapote Only, a boulder problem he believes to be 9A. This is only the second boulder in the world graded 9A, after Burden of Dreams freed by Nalle Hukkataival in 2016 in Finland.

French climbing magazine Grimper has broken the news that Charles Albert, famous for his extremely difficult boulder problems climbed barefoot, has made the first ascent of No Kapote Only, a boulder problem at the Rocher Brûlé sector in Fontainebleau for which the young bleausard has put forward the unfathomable grade 9A.

At present there are no precise details, but as things stand this is now only the second problem in the world graded 9A after Nalle Hukkataival's Burden of Dreams at Finland in October 2016. This problem is still awaiting a repeat and confirmation.

As mentioned, Albert shot to fame for his extraordinary talent coupled with the fact that his hardest climbs are all done barefoot, i.e. without climbing shoes. This is because, as he told planetmountain.com in a 2016 interview, his climbing becomes "more natural, more instinctive". Climbing barefoot requires enormous toe power, but also offers unparalleled sensitivity.

In 2016 Albert repeated several 8C problems barefoot at Fontainebleau, in 2017 he raised the bar establishing the forest’s first 8C+, La révolutionnaire. Now he's checked in with this 9A. The line that is there for everyone to see, on the outskirts of Paris in the world’s undisputed cradle of bouldering. Inspiring.

Charles Albert attempting No Kapote Only, February 2018

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