Climbing at the Chosspile

I’ve been having a fantastic time climbing at Chosspile in Hartbeespoort as of late. It’s been a fantastic breath of fresh air away from my self-imposed pressure on Rodan. It’s felt wonderful to push hard on steep climbs, using a whole bunch of trickery to get through the hard climbing. I was fortunate enough to have been able to put in some time on Shadowfax and figure out the intricacies of the crux again. Felt awesome.

Andrew and Ebert encouraged me to try out a new line that Andrew bolted. Between the three of us we worked out the beta and sorted out the sequences, eventually. I decided I needed a new pair of shoes for the line and fortunately I was in luck. Outward Ventures managed to dispatch a brand new pair of La Sportiva Pythons for me! Fantastic for the slippery steepness that is Chosspile. They are wicked for toe hooking and heel hooking, plus they feel amazing out of the box. I wouldn’t recommend these for vertical lines, but for gym climbing and steep rock they are fantastic!

The next weekend we returned to find that a couple of Andrew’s draws had been stolen and his rope cut. We were both upset but it didn’t ruin our day; it did however provide us with the perfect name for the line: Kleptomaniac. I fine tuned my beta and Andrew suggested that I should try to open the line the next day.


I came back the next morning and got a good high point on my first try and then sent it next try. The sequence I found at the top is really technical with a couple kneebars. It is probably 8a for me but won’t be easier than 8a+ for most other people (I do love my kneebars). I wrote it up at 8a but I’ll wait and see what the next person says before I change the grade in the guide.


Andrew getting started on Kleptomaniac (8a+)


After I opened Kleptomaniac, Candice and myself headed up to the higher cave and had some fun up there. I managed to film Ivan almost doing Fossil Fuel (8a). He was looking so strong, but then all of the sudden he was off… AT THE CHAINS!!!! I haven’t ever seen someone fall that high up on Fossil Fuel. Shame bud, you’ll crush it next time for sure! It’ll be his first 8a and a good one at that. Check out the video below.


Ivan van de Tang – (almost) Fossil Fuel


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