McClure on ´Overshadow´ f9a+

Over the weekend we received the following from Steve:If anyone was wondering what I?ve been doing for the last few months, well, some would say banging my head against a wall! It felt like it for a while, but now all the blood, sweat, tears and finger skin were worth it! I?ve been trying a new line at Malham cove in Yorkshire. It takes the biggest and steepest part of the cliff. The first half was climbed in the eighties giving ´Overnight Sensation´, a popular 8a+. Three years ago I went up to check the moves, I could see why it had been left, a desperate boulder problem bulge after the half height belay was followed by a hard upper wall; no rest, bad holds, steep rock! It took me at least 5 visits just to figure out the moves through the bulge, and another 10 more to link the new section of climbing. It´s one of the best routes I´ve ever done, and it´s the hardest. It seems important to stick a number on things these days. If you don´t, everyone else will anyway. It´s a guide for others to follow in the future. When it´s really hard some say its for publicity, to ´big-up´ ones self, their opinion. I suggest it could be 9a+, an estimate based on effort and experience. But then how important is it to get it exactly right? Not important at all! What?s important is honestly suggesting a level. If it gets down graded so what, if it gets up graded, so what again. What counts is its a great route that tested me right to my limit. Had it been 9b or 8c the journey from start to finish would have been no more or less rewarding.” I´ve called the route Overshadow. It overshadows all my other achievements in terms or difficulty, commitment and focus, and makes a fine companion to the neighbouring route, ´rainshadow´. We caught up with Steve to ask him about the route. He was pretty whacked, not just from the effort of climbing the thing, but also because of a monster cold that arrived whilst literally driving home after the successful red-point attempt. When Steve climbed Rainshadow in 2003 he decided, for a laugh, to attempt The Groove, a f8a+ nearby immediately afterwards. He failed. This time around he took the challenge more seriously, spending an hour and a quarter on it after Overshadow. Success may have been sweet, but ´it was a complete fight´ were his words the following day. Read more from the planetFear coaches on the planetFearEXTRA blog>>