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Bound by tradition: a conversation about Tribe | Video

This week’s video comes from La Sportiva and features climbers James Pearson and Jacopo Larcher chatting about the process behind one of, if not the hardest trad routes in the world – ‘Tribe’. Rumoured to be around the French 9a/+ sport mark, Tribe is undoubtedly up there with the most difficult routes climbed on placed gear and speaks volumes of the pair’s vision and prowess on rock. First ascended by Larcher in Spring 2019 with Pearson claiming the second ascent at the back end of 2020, Tribe is based out of Cadarese, Northern Italy and looks just as beautiful and aesthetic as it is hard.

So, sit back and enjoy these two heavyweights discussing their sending journey whilst we relive the experience through footage of their time on this gorgeous line. Although neither have offered up a grade for the route, both believe it to be harder than anything they’ve previously climbed on gear. Interestingly, Pearson seems to have experienced somewhat of a redemptive arc in the trad climbing stratosphere having had some of his earliest first ascents severely downgraded by the likes of Honnold and Macleod. Now, some years later, it’s fitting that a wiser Pearson is at the very pinnacle of the trad climbing scene, following the likes of Larcher with game changing ascents and even withholding from any big grades or speculative numbers. A joy to watch, now let’s see them on some of Birkett’s Lakeland test pieces!