After a long time of absence because of my injury I am finally back on the rocks of Frankenjura. Despite the unsettled weather this spring we had some really nice climbing days. One of them was at Christinenwand/Püttlachtal. I warmed up in Carpe diem a nice 8+ and then checked out the best line there Mayday 9-/9. At first I had my difficulties with this tricky edge but at the end of the day I had a really good beta…The next day climbing to the top felt almost easily.
From Spain via Switzerland back to Frankenjura
My second outdoor season started in February. I went on a short trip to Margalef in Catalonia (ESP). The style of climbing is athletic a lot like in Frankenjura… but more enduring. The conditions were perfect… sunny, cold, no rain. I liked it. I sent some 7b´s, a really nice 7b+ “Besame mucho” and I onsighted my first 7a+. At a rest day I stupidly tore a muscle by hanging on a tree limb – No climbing for four weeks. The rest of the trip I spent belaying, enjoying nature and eating a lot of aioli and bread.
After I cured my injury I was more motivated than before… couldn´t wait for being back on the rock again. I went for another trip to Margalef. Soon I climbed my first 7c Sputnik (L´esut). It was fun… about 30m enduring climbing on fingerpockets and some crimps. This route deserves three stars. I liked it a lot and I lost my fear of falling in it. I checked it out two times and the third day I sent it with the third try. Also at L´escut I did my first 7b flash… another one followed in Tres ponts a few days later.
The sun in Catalonia became warmer and we travelled back home. Unfortunately we had a serious car accident on the autobahn near Ulm. A picture tells more than words:
The carsh pads saved our life. What happened? It was 10 p.m., already dark outside, almost no traffic. We drove on the right lane about 90km/h… suddenly another car with the speed about 180 km/h crashed into us. Probably the driver fell asleep like his wife and their one year old child in the back. Miraculously no one got hurt except me. I broke my left wrist.
I recovered really fast, after two weeks I was back on the wall… Toproping. Another three weeks later I climbed without a plastered arm. But my shape was lost. The following weeks I spent in Frankenjura. We drove from on sector to the other from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. I climbed a lot of routes from 6c+ to 7a+ and soon I became stronger. I was looking for a new project. I wanted to do another 7c… The Redline. I tried the route a few times but I still felt a little weak.
In August we escaped the heat to Gastlosen (2252m) in Switzerland… High altitude sportclimbing on limestone. The north face was in the shade till three o´clock. We had to start early in the morning:
– 6.30 a.m. the alarm clock rang
– 7.00 a.m. departure
– An about one hour hike
– 8.00 a.m. reaching the cliff
In the beginning I didn´t like the style… very technical climbing. After one week I got used to the rock and I enjoyed climbing there a lot. Mostly we went to sector Oberberg and Lochgrat. The first route I climbed was the nicest 7b I´ve ever done…Doping (sector Gabeldaumen)… Amazing enduring climbing on pockets. Shortly afterwards I sent my second 7c Jeunesse sexe (Lochgrat)… it was a boulder problem in the middle. The day I climbed it I needed two tries. The first time I fell after the crux on the last “hard” move… I was really pumped and I almost gave up for the day… but my friends convinced not to. One hour later I climbed it without being pumped at all :-).
September… back in Frankenjura. I went to try the Red Line again (Fuchsloch) . I succeeded after two more tries. The first time I fell in the very ending by missing a pocket. I got to do it again. There it was… the third 7c and the best one of all. The rest of the season I tried some harder routes and boulders in Frankenjura to gain more strength. I hope it will pay off next year.
Now I am having another forced break. I injured my left wirst again… strechted ligaments 😦
Physical exercise has always been a big part of my life. I tried a lot of different sports. But in the end … there was my scoliosis I had to care about. I needed a sport to get physically and mentally prepared for a life with scoliosis.
I chose climbing. It trains my body and mind. Even so I am never just a climber… I will always be a scoliosis athlete working for a straight back.
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At the age of eleven I got my first brace. About twelve followed the next fifteen years. Especially the first years I was lazy about wearing my brace. I rather wanted to go outside doing sports and playing with friends.But my orthopedic technician convinced me to take my scoliosis seriously and work harder on my back. He did a really good job and I am deeply grateful.
However I´ve never wore my brace twenty-three hours a day… It was too much. I needed active time without wearing a brace. I liked to challenge myself in different kind of sports, like tennis, badminton, inline skating, ice hokey, cross country skiing, cycling etc… I tried everything and when I was not doing sport or physical therapy I wore my brace.
After adolescence my body was possibly ready to get rid of the brace… but my mind wasn´t. I was really afraid my curves could increase when I was no longer wearing my brace. The risk of losing everything I worked my whole life for was too high… I kind of felt addicted to my brace. The following years I only wore it when I felt tiered and during night.
2010 climbing came into my life…After a few months my back has already looked better and felt more stable than ever before. In February 2012 I went on a climbing trip to Catalonia (ESP). In the luggage was no space for my brace… it had to stay at home.
After one month without it, my mind didn´t need it anymore and finally at the age of 26 I got out of my brace. I´ve never put it on again except for the pictures below.
My fear of increasing my curves without a brace was not confirmed…. just the opposite. Soon enough I made a progress. My spine became more mobile and you could recognize first signs of a natural double S-shape. Also I could breathe deeper and became better at endurance sport without special practice.