Ashira and 14c- Thoughts?

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PeteC

climber
Topic Author's Original Post - Oct 29, 2012 - 08:43pm PT
So, as you all have no doubt read, an 11 year old girl from New York is crushing 14c. This is hugely thought provoking. One side of me is incredibly impressed and entirely inspired that one so young could be so persistent and motivated. All advantages of small stature notwithstanding, she must have an incredibly cool head and wonderful technique. But another side says it points out the invalidity of climbing ratings, the transiency of the strength to weight ratio of pre-adolescents (Cicada where are you?) and the wonder of if an 11 year old truly understands the consequences of a life threatening sport. The sending spree at least deserves a thread in contemplation. Help me solidify my thoughts. I realize that this will remain a remarkable feat regardless of my/our opinions-- it just crys out for deeper contemplation.
Nilepoc

Boulder climber
Tx
Oct 29, 2012 - 09:01pm PT
Having climbed with and around her, I can vouch for her psych and drive. She crushes in the boulders and now apparently on the ropes as well. She pushes herself very hard and it shows. On the same trip she did two 14a's and I think one was a flash.

I hope she does not burn out like so many kids before her.

Her abilities do call into question the nature of ratings, but so do the abilities of really tall climbers and super strong climbers and all other anomalies in the climbing world. We all have styles of climbing we are better at, those abilities do not change the ratings, why should hers?
zxcvbnm

climber
Oct 29, 2012 - 09:05pm PT
She hadn't even climbed a 5.14a before and she sent her first in two tries, and then flashed her next. Then she redpointed 5.14c in 4 tries and climbed another 14c by the end of the week.
healyje

Trad climber
Portland, Oregon
Oct 29, 2012 - 09:08pm PT
Fabulous accomplishments, but the ratings were developed for adult males with adult male strength-to-weight ratios, not ratios which likely run quite significantly higher than that.
The Warbler

climber
the edge of America
Oct 29, 2012 - 09:09pm PT
I always thought climbing comps should have weight classes, like fighting, rather than age classes...
Riley Wyna

Trad climber
A crack near you
Oct 29, 2012 - 09:14pm PT
This number sh#t is so f*#king boring..
Makes me want to quit the sport and be a hiker....
all in jim

climber
Oct 29, 2012 - 09:21pm PT
You may have made the same observations about Beth Rodden and Katie Brown when they were sub-100lb teenagers onsighting 5.13 and 5.14 respectively.

Both grew up, put on weight and continued to set the bar: Beth with an ascent of yosemite's hardest crack (still unrepeated) and Katie with a rare (is hers the only one?) onsight of RNWF of Half Dome (5.12).

Chris Sharma was also pulling off amazing feats as a 110lb 13-year old. He continues to break barriers as a burly grown-up.

I'll bet Ashima is a special climber of the same ilk as the aforementioned, and if she stays psyched will be pushing the standards in a few years as a bigger girl.

If you disagree, name a top climber who wasn't a talented (and light statured) youngster.
Fluoride

Trad climber
West Los Angeles, CA
Oct 29, 2012 - 09:24pm PT
FYI it's Ashima, not Ashira.

Amazing accomplishment but you still pose good thoughts regarding it Pete.
PeteC

climber
Topic Author's Reply - Oct 29, 2012 - 09:27pm PT
No, no, I hope she goes on to greatness. But it is she a "better climber" than, say, Ueli Steck, because she climbs a higher rating? Some would say yes.

Edit: I remember my satisfaction and sense of self esteem as I climbed my "first 5.10 ..11..12etc" and how I felt at one point that it was a measurement of my self-worth. I don't mean to imply that I'm above the ratings game. Is there a better way of rating that encompasses size advantages/disadvantages, commitment, length , dangerousness, deviousness versus straightforwardness, or ambient conditions ? Does it matter because its all contrived bullshit in our heads and the rocks are the rocks? What is the yardstick by which we measure success? I guess, as I get older, it's the friends I make through climbing and the feeling of power and beauty. Maybe Ashima feels that way already, and is 3 decades ahead of me in that regard also.
RyanD

climber
Squamish
Oct 29, 2012 - 09:27pm PT
Yea, I wanna see her climb supercrack & see how that goes.

Many don't even bother with 5.10 & 5.11 anymore it seems. 5.12 is the new 5.8 for kids these days. Virtually none of these little phenoms seem to give two turds about pluggin gear, baggin peaks, or suffering either, WTF?!

Difficulty &/or grades is the endgame for the next generation it would appear.

Amazing stuff they are doing, I'd love to see these little kids crushing in person.


 edit: good point below Jim, the kids are unstoppable!
all in jim

climber
Oct 29, 2012 - 09:31pm PT
^^^^

She could probably layback Supercrack and yawn the whole way up.
The Chief

climber
Climber from the Land Mongols under the Whites
Oct 29, 2012 - 09:34pm PT
Love to see her get on and flash Raliegh Collins's A-Hills .12a blank clean face testpiece or Henny's new totally blank clean face .13+ project next to my line in Pine Creek.

It is all relative.
10b4me

Ice climber
dingy room at the Happy boulders hotel
Oct 29, 2012 - 09:35pm PT
bring her to the Valley, or IC and let's see how she likes crack climbing
Tami

Social climber
Canada
Oct 29, 2012 - 09:36pm PT
I think it's great this kid is climbin' so very hard. I don't think size or weight or age should come into it. She climbs hard stuff. Yey !


She's a sport-climber/boulderer type of climber and , as such, isn't gonna be climbin' big alpine routes.

Yet.


Maybe she will one day and that would be fabulous.


I wish her all the best in many years of great climbing.
PeteC

climber
Topic Author's Reply - Oct 29, 2012 - 09:38pm PT
Tami nailed it.
Mighty Hiker

climber
Vancouver, B.C.
Oct 29, 2012 - 09:41pm PT
Well, when it comes to women's gymnastics, perhaps the nearest analogy, most of the best competitors are younger than or just at puberty. Why should it be much different for types of climbing where gymnastic/athletic ability is the key?
Riley Wyna

Trad climber
A crack near you
Oct 29, 2012 - 09:59pm PT
Climbing is not gymnastics or acrobatics - although it is being reduced to that..
In all honesty the athetic feats and training in both of these endeavors far surpass anything in climbing.

This is why bolts suck and it brings the life style choice, that is climbing, and encompasses adventure, travel, instincts, exploration, skill and judgement down to the level of any other stupid goal oriented human endeavor. Follow the f*#king leader...yawn
I only speak for myself..
I am sure it means many things to many people...
But it all seems like a bore as of late..

Hikers and explorers have far more soul....it seems..
all in jim

climber
Oct 29, 2012 - 10:21pm PT
^^^^

Hard climbing is very much about gymnastics and acrobatics. Always has been.
Riley Wyna

Trad climber
A crack near you
Oct 29, 2012 - 10:26pm PT
http://www.cirquedusoleil.com/en/shows/michael-jackson-tour/default.aspx


This probably pays better than..


T H

Boulder climber
bouldering
Oct 29, 2012 - 10:36pm PT
Cicada where are you?
I started a thread about her a few years back. A relative later posted that she was still very active in comps and clmbing.
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