The Irresistible charm of Women - Part VII
The short history of rock climbing
As long as the male top climbers were presenting almost all the time quite similar skills, and progress in sending the most difficult routes had its own tempo, in the case of women the situation was a little bit more dramatic.The future of women's climbing is not predicted to be so gloomy though. After all, on the arena we can see a lot of talented girls, like Charlotte Durif, Johanna Ernst, Jenny Lavarda and the whole Slovenian team with Maja Vidmar and Natalja Gros at the head, who in a bit shy way have begun to set limits marked by Baskque.
Undoubted female leader at the turn of the century was Basque Josune Bereziartu – to whom the following female climbing records belonged: 1998 - Honky Tonky 8c and 2000 - Honky Mix 8c+, both obviously in Oñate. If you add to that the OS ascent on Bon Viatge 8a+ in Terradets and boulder problem Berezi 8A in Larraona, you can easily notice that nowadays, after ten years, only few women climb at such a level. And Bereziartu did not stop at this point and through the following seasons she systematically raised several times both her limit and the whole rock-climbing level of women.
In 2002, she sent Bain de Sang 9a in Saint Loup. We should notice here that she did it more than ten years after the first male ascent of the route in such degree. On the other hand, that achievement was in only one degree lower than confirmed and fixed up hardest lines of those times done by men. Obvoiusly, it was by no means over. Two years later she added to her list another 9a - Logical Progresion in Japanese's Joyama and evened the women's record in OS on Steroid Performance 8b in Horai. After another two years, and sent Bimbaluna 9a/+, then set a new standard on Hidrofobia 8b+ in Montsant doing it in precious OS. There are also her other achievements definitely worth mentioning: 8A+ boulder (Atomic Play Boy in 2001) and 8B+/C traverse (Travesía de Baltzola - 2002). Then she has slowly gone away from sport climbing to successfully focus her strength on big walls and ice climbing...