Pickford Climbs new Bosigran E8

On May 20th, Dave Pickford climbed the diagonal line on the wall left of the classic Kafoozalem (E3) at Bosigran after two days of effort, solving one of the last great problems on Cornish granite. Teahupo?o weighs in at E8 7a, and follows the striking arching seam/crack across the wall until it joins the upper part of Kafoozalem. It offers technical and sustained climbing of exceptional quality, after an ?all or nothing? horizontal dyno for an undercut to gain the seam. The so-called ?Diamond Face? had been previously top-roped by both Mark Edwards and Ken Palmer, using a desperate mantelshelf to gain the first part of the undercut seam. Dave?s solution – which may only be possible for climbers with a arm-span greater than 6ft 4in – uses a small crimp on the extreme left hand edge of the face to facilitate the 1.5 metre dyno for the seam. This move is well-protected by a side-runner in Beaker?s Route (HVS 5a), up which Teahupo?o starts. After the crux dyno, a meaty E7 6b/c lies ahead before the sanctuary of Kafoozalem is reached. Technical and balancy moves lead out right into the seam, protected initially by a poor downward-pointing knifeblade. A fall from here could be serious as the peg may rip and the gear in Beaker?s Route and the ground are the same distance away from oneanother! Once in the seam proper, solid protection and brilliant sustained climbing lead swiftly into Kafoozalem. Teahupo?o is the name of an infamous reef-break off the south eastern coast of Tahiti in French Polynesia, and is widely recognized as having some of the heaviest waves in the world. It was here on August 17th, 2000, that the visionary big-wave surfer Laird Hamilton is credited with surfing the heaviest wave ever ridden (as documented in Riding Giants). On the weekend of the first ascent of the Diamond Face, an immense north-westerly groundswell off the Cornish coast caused by unseasonal storms produced seas normally seen only in winter. The whole of Porthmonia Cove turned into a boiling cauldron of water, with massive waves regularly breaking over the top of Porthmonia Island. Teahupo?o is a celebration of the combined forces of earth and ocean that form our sea-cliff adventures.