Date of birth: April 23, 1981
Location: Santa Cruz, California
Residence: Barcelona, Spain
Height: 6ft 0 in (1.83 m)
Weight: 165lb (75 kg)
Profession: Rock Climbing
Highest Boulering Grade: V15 (8c)
Highest Redpoint Grade: 5.15c (9b+)
Highest Onsight: 5.14b (8c)
Favorite Music: Reggae
“Climbing is how I focus my energy, it’s what gives me a sense of purpose.
Climbing is this long term, lifelong journey.
It’s really important to just take your time with it and keep it fun.
I’ve seen a lot of people burn out because it starts becoming this job for them.
It stops being fun.
For me, it’s been really important to keep it enjoyable. Listen to your motivation."
20 YEARS AGO, Chris Sharma made history by capturing the first ascent of Necessary Evil 5.14c (8c+) in the Virgin River Gorge, Utah, the highest-rated climb in North America at the time, at the age of 15. Some thought it was a fluke, but as Chris quickly proved, he was just getting started. Over the next couple of decades, Sharma established the world's first 5.15a with Realization in Céüse, France (see video below), the first 5.15b with his ascent of Jumbo Love at Clark Mountain, California, and the first 5.15c La Dura Dura in Oliana, Spain (shown above), capturing the 2nd ascent after Adam Ondra on March 27th 2013.
Chris's list of ascents have not been restricted to rediculously hard sport climbing routes. Chris has also established a number of V15 boulder problems, including Witness the Fitness (video below) in the Ozark Mountains of Arkansas, and Catalan Witness the Fitness, a tunnel-like, horizontal roof problem at Cova de l’Ocell, north of Barcelona, on January 4th, 2016.
In addition, Chris is known to popularize other genres of the sport, including 'psicobloc' (a.k.a. deep-water-soloing or DWS) For those unfamiliar with the sport, psicobloc involves free soloing sea cliffs off the coast of Mallorca, Spain, with nothing but the Mediterranean Ocean beneath you. Chris' signature route is Es Pontas 5.15a, a magnificent 65' arch that was established on September 26th, 2006.
Born and raised in Santa Cruz, California, Chris now lives in Barcelona, Spain with his wife, Jimena Alarcon, a Venezuelan model/actress, and their baby girl Alana. Together, they opened a 'Sharma' climbing gym in the heart of Barcelona. To learn more, please listen to our exclusive PodCast interview with Chris, as he shares his thoughts on the state of climbing, his new gym, how he trains for the world's hardest climbs, his spirituality, and the secrets to his success and happiness.
CHRIS SHARMA PODCAST
Available on APPLE PODCAST
CHRIS SHARMA VIDEOS
Chris Sharma finds another psicobloc king line to recharge his soul in Mont-Rebei, Spain
"The route is really continuous, steep, and pumpy. The feeling to be 60 feet up at the lip of a cave, and just dangling by your fingertips, chalking up, and getting ready to go for a crux move. It’s so extreme and wild and spectacular, and yet controlled and safe, too.
Legendary Chris Sharma envisioned this King line up the underside of this free-standing limestone arch off the coast of Mallorca. Climbing ropeless above the Mediterranean Sea, Sharma spent months attempting the seven foot dyno, splashing down at least 50 times before finally sticking it, then falling many more times at the even harder lip of the arch. He finally made the first ascent of this masterpiece in September, 2006. This is a remastered cut of the send, adapted from the original sequence in our feature documentary King Lines. Es Pontas is unrated but considered one of the hardest climbs in the world and went unrepeated for a decade, and to this day only repeated by two climbers. This piece is dedicated to the late Miquel Riera, The Godfather of Mallorcan Psicobloc ( deep water soloing). It was Miquel who introduced Chris to this King line - Es Pontas. Video edit courtesy of Reel Rock. Film made by BigUp Production.
Rampage was one of the first films by Josh Lowell and Brett Lowell, and it helped launch the American bouldering revolution. In 1999, the 18 year old climbing phenom Chris Sharma roamed the American West with Obe Carrion in a beat up old RV, visiting the best emerging bouldering areas and establishing hundreds of problems. Video courtesy of Reel Rock.
Chris Sharma makes the second ascent of "Everything is Karate" 5.14c/d 9a
Chris Sharma makes the second ascent of "Joe Mama" 9a+/5.15a - a powerful pure endurance route bolted by Joe Kinder.
'Last week I managed to send Joe Mama 9a+ at Oliana, a route that had challenged me a lot last season. It's been quite a year with so many new experiences. As we enter into Fall and the climbing season it feels so good to be back in the groove and finding my flow on the rock! '
“When I was working on La Dura Dura, I kept looking over to my right and saw this line of holds.
One day I finally decided to bolt it. That day happened to be the same day that Patrick Edlinger passed away.
I named the route in his honor. So I called it Le Blond.”
Chris Sharma and friend Klemen Becan puts up an amazing multi pitch projest in Mont Rebei.
“The definition of a king line is something that’s barely possible, but it’s so beautiful, you just want to climb it.
For me, combining these high-level sports with perfecting the control of your body and mixing that with these super beautiful,
natural features like that arch – it’s just perfection.”
Although Chris Sharma bolted the route, it was Adam Ondra who made the first ascent. Instead of feeling defeated, Chris became even more motivated, espcially after establishing the first ascent of Stoking the Fire in Santa Linya, saying it "freed" him for La Dura Dura. And on March 27 2013, just one month after Adam's historical ascent, Chris became the second person to climb 9b+ (5.15c). This is what Chris had to say...
"Getting Adam's perspective was really important.
I'd practically written the route off, and when we decided to work it together, he brought it back to life. It was a healthy process for both of us, we fed off each other's motivation, and through him I think I became a better climber myself."
After bolting the route with Sonnie Trotter in 2005, Sharma returned that September to send the route for the first ascent, rating 5.14c or 14d. Dreamcatcher went unrepeated for four years until Sean McColl sent the route for the second ascent and confirmed the grade at 5.14d.
Chris Sharma established the first ascent of this amazing forty-foot roof problem "Witness the Fitness" V15 in the Ozark Mountains of Arkansas, USA, in 2005. As you will see, this incredible line requires some of the wildest moves you've ever seen.
In July, 2001, Chris Sharma made the first ascent of "Realization (AKA Biographie)", the world's first confirmed 5.15a/9a+, in Ceuse, France.
Chris Sharma's first ascent of "3 Degrees of Separation" 5.15a/9a+ in Ceuse, France went unrepeated for 8 years until Adam Ondra made the second ascent in 2015. Afterwards, Ondra went onto say it was the hardest climb in Ceuse.
Chris Sharma made the first ascent of "First Round First Minute" 5.15b/9b, in Margalef, Spain on April 19, 2011. This twenty five move route features a V10 boulder problem (the crux) at the very top!
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