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Home Travel The Umea Connection

The Umea Connection

Planning a bouldering trip when its 30 degrees Celsius outside is like shopping for groceries when you’re totally stuffed. It just doesn’t feel right. But somehow you know you’ll be hungry again, after not having eaten for a few hours and you know you will love it when you smell and see the goodies in front of you.

This was exactly what I felt like when I booked my flight to Umea. The temps had climbed into the high 20ies in Graz and I hadn’t bouldered on rock in more than one and a half years.  But apart from the fact that I wanted to visit my girl in Sweden, I knew that fresh rock and brisk temperatures would psyche me up again for the purest of all forms of climbing.

[Taking off from Stockholm-Arlanda Airport]

As the plane descended through the dense clouds I am dreaming of sunny skies and windy days which make the granite as sticky as sexwax. As far as the temperature goes my expectations were not disappointed but I didn´t count with that much precipitation. Umea was still covered in snow.

[Approaching Umea]

In the end, I got 2,5 days of bouldering out of the 14 day stay in Sweden. Not quite what I hoped for but the little climbing I got in at a small area called Mosjön was worth it! Once more, I will let the pictures speak for themselves:

[During the Flash of Shangri-Mu, 7b]

[During the Flash of Shangri-Mu, 7b]

[Mel warming up at the Linedance Boulder, 6b]

[Kuba warming up at the Linedance Boulder, 6b]

[Johan warming up at the Linedance Boulder, 6b]

[Olda warming up at the Linedance Boulder, 6b]

[Mel warming up at the Linedance Boulder, 6b]

[Trying to find the tricky heelhook at Mumana Sitstart, 7c/+]

[Me doing the amazing topout after sending Mumana Sitstart, 7c/+]

[Return to Sender sitstart, 7c+]

[... and the standing start, 7b. Man, its so much easier if you know the topout ;-)]

[Mel sending the super-classic Shangri-La, 6c]

[Me during the flash of Hyperborea, 7b]

[Johan chopping wood and inspireing me to name a first ascent Lumberjack]

[100% natural crashpad]

[Flashing I Skuggan av Eden, 7c+]

[Mumana standing start, 7b]

After having repeated most of the obvious (and dry) lines I went to look around and ended up with a number of very nice though moderate first ascents. The new problems that emerged that day are now called: Joke of the day, 6a+, The Lumberjack, 6b, Sausage Traverse, 6c+, Sami Saying, 7b+ and a 7a+, which is basically a "low" eliminate version of The Sausage Traverse. Later I also added a lower start to Deliverance, on the Lilla Stenen, which I believe to be something like 7a.

[Johan and I cleaning the back side of Stora Stenen]

[Doing the first ascent of the Sausage Traverse, 6c+]

[Johan going for the second ascent of the Sausage Traverse, 6c+]

[The first ascent of Sami Saying, 7b+. Some flexibility in the hip and good knee-dropping abilities sure help!]

[The first ascent of the low-right start of Deliverance, 7a]

The few hours I was able to spend on the rocks with my new friends from Umea were so relaxing and motivated me again to use the crashpad more often from now on.

[Our BBQ-masters Johan and Niclas]

But just as I was about to leave I saw what I would consider one of the best bouldering problems in Sweden: The Souldweeper sitstart project! Just a few hours before my plane was leaving for Austria I desperately tried to come up with the correct sequence and link the moves but I was running out of time an strength. Oh well, one more good reason to come back…

[Attemting the Soulweeper sitstart project...]

[... until it gets dark.]

PS: Sorry that the videos aren’t edited yet. As I am writing this update I am on the road again from Norway to southern Spain and the edited videos are on my hard drive back home.


Umfrage: your vision!