stefano ghisolfi 5.15d
Stefano Ghisolfi on 'Change,' 5.15c, in 2020; (photo/screen capture courtesy Ghisolfi)

Stefano Ghisolfi Starts Trying ‘Silence,’ World’s Hardest Sport Climb

The hunt is on. In a bid to climb the world’s hardest sport route, Stefano Ghisolfi announced Monday that he started projecting ‘Silence,’ 5.15d/9c.

Editor’s note: This article was originally published on Explorersweb.

Adam Ondra’s 2018 masterpiece has entertained few suitors in the intervening 4-plus years since the first ascent. In fact, no one else has really tried it — at one point, Pete Whittaker jugged up to see whether he could climb the crack in the wildly steep roof.

Turned out his alternate beta worked, but the “impossibly hard looking” V13/14 boulder problems surrounding the fissure discouraged him from trying any other moves on the rig.

Now, Ghisolfi will make a concerted effort to grab the second ascent of the world’s first 5.15d — and he promised to broadcast his progress.

Keep an eye on Instagram and tune in to Ghisolfi’s YouTube channel every Thursday evening (U.S. Central time) for the freshest dishes from the cave in Flatanger, Norway. “I’ll try to tell you the whole process behind this project,” the Italian crusher said on Instagram.


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Ghisolfi vs. 5.15d

Put simply, “Silence” is a beast. It’s relentlessly steep for more or less the entirety of its 148 feet, and we’d say Ondra’s descriptions of the cruxes land between demoralizing and horrifying.

When Whittaker found the new, feet-first “traditional” method for climbing the crack, Ondra commented, “Great news is that the route is possible without dislocating the knee though, which makes the route much better!”

Sure. If there’s anyone who’s got a good shot at finishing “Silence,” it’s Ghisolfi.

Flatanger forces a distinct climbing style, as multi-directional holds and varying rock surfaces demand creative sequences. Ghisolfi’s Flatanger resume already includes “Change,” 5.15c, which he climbed in 2020.

Though he called the effort a “bloodbath” and took over an hour to climb the 180-foot marathon, he did say at the time that his war with the route ended “unexpectedly soon.”

So stay tuned to Ghisolfi’s channels — he’s liable to clip the chains anytime.

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Sam Anderson

Sam has roamed the American continent to follow adventures, explore natural wonders, and find good stories. After going to college to be a writer, he got distracted (or saved) by rock climbing and spent most of the next decade on the road, supporting himself with trade work. He's had addresses in the Adirondack Mountains, Las Vegas, and somehow Kansas, but his heart belongs in the Texas hill country.