No-Ropes Climbing Comp Features 50ft. Walls, Water Below

No-Ropes Climbing Comp Features 50ft. Walls, Water Below

Filed under: Climbing 

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The format for the Psicobloc Masters Series is unlike anything else in climbing. The organization, which will hold its debut U.S. event in August, has a $20,000 prize purse.

climbing competition over water
A 50-foot wall. No ropes. If you fall… Splash!

Climber Chris Sharma is one of the main event organizers. He and a small group of people around the world known as deep-water soloists have for years used water as their crash pad.

Said Sharma, “For years we’ve talked about how this format will be the way of taking climbing to the mainstream. I’m really excited to be bringing this competition to Olympic Park.”

over water climbing competition
Utah Olympic Park pool is the venue for the climbing comp

The venue, in Park City, Utah, is a 750,000-gallon freestyle aerial training pool at Utah Olympic Park. Skiers practice aerial tricks off jumps into the water. The structures will be converted to climbing walls for the August event.

The event, which is being promoted in association with the Outdoor Retailer Summer Market trade show (held in Salt Lake City the same week) is open to the public for spectating. Qualifying rounds begin on July 28, with finals on August 2.

rock climbing over water
Chris Sharma deep-water soloing

In addition to climbers reaching, slipping, and falling a long ways into water the event will include a ski jumping exhibition during the intermission periods.

About the name, in Spanish psicobloc means “crazy bouldering.” The company has organized events in Spain since 2011. The Park City event marks the first time competitive deep-water soloing will be hosted in the U.S.

Stephen Regenold
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Stephen Regenold is Founder of GearJunkie, which he launched as a nationally-syndicated newspaper column in 2002. As a journalist and writer, Regenold has covered the outdoors industry for two decades, including as a correspondent for the New York Times. A father of five, Regenold and his wife live in Minneapolis.
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