MAKING THE GRADE
Dean Scarff on bringing AI to climbing grades It’s some time in The Future; the bushfire smoke has cleared, you’re out of coronavirus lockdown and you’re psyched to finally climb outdoors again. Flicking through the guidebook you spot it; a climb that’s at your grade, and it’s even got two stars. The onsight awaits.
Several hours later you’re thrutching up a section of the route that feels like it must be at least two grades harder than what the guidebook claimed. The only hope for your ego is that you’re collateral damage from a 1970s interstate sandbagging contest. If only you could have stumbled on a recently-bolted softie that climbs like a gym route instead!
In Australia we’re blessed with the best grading system in the world courtesy of the legendary John Ewbank. Ewbank used whole number grades, which took into account a range of factors. These numbers put climbs in order: you can expect a grade 20 wi.... Continue Reading at Vertical Life Mag