Watch this young climber tackle the epic Papichulo

Ultimate ascension.
© Wojtek Kozakiewicz
By Oliver Pelling

Everyone, no matter what sport they practice or career they're pursuing, has mountains to climb. This is especially true for climbers because, y'know, they actually climb mountains.

This clip by Polish filmmaker Wojtek Kozakiewicz follows the story of 20-year-old Piotrek Schab as he attempts to send Papichulo, located in Oliana, Spain. The climb is graded 9a+/5.15a, depending on which country you're from, which translates loosely to 'really, really hard' in non-climbing terms. First climbed by Chris Sharma in 2008, Papichulo has become one of the most repeated routes of its grade in the world. Which means that, in climbing circles, it's a pretty serious slab of rock.

More than just simply show Schab tackling this tough-as-nails rock face, Kozakiewicz sits the young climber down and digs deeper in his climbing philosophy. "I changed my approach only a month ago when I started working on Papichulo," says Schab in the clip. "I decided that it's more satisfying to try hard lines, whatever the outcome may be."

His words - simple as they seem - echo those of German philosopher Friedrich Nietzche, who had a thing or two to say about climbing stuff himself. "On the mountains of truth you can never climb in vain," he wrote. "Either you will reach a point higher up today, or you will be training your powers so that you will be able to climb higher tomorrow."

Hats off to you, Piotrek. Here's to climbing higher tomorrow.

(Make sure you hit the CC button on the video to enable subtitles)

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