8c+ Red River Gorge

Lucifer, 5.14C in Red River Gorge. Picture by Andy Wickström 2018

Lucifer, 5.14C in Red River Gorge. Picture by Andy Wickström 2018

Another trip where I learned a tons.

This trip was meant to be my back-to-shape trip where I’d just climb a lot of easy routes. My doctor said that I could climb on holds which wouldn’t hurt my wrist (check out the post about my bone bruise which I got from overtraining). So crimps crimps crimps!!

Pockets are scary! Picture by Matty Hong (2017)

Pockets are scary! Picture by Matty Hong (2017)

I tried Lucifer last year on 2017 but after almost doing it (felt from the chains….💔), Next time II injured my finger on the crux. I had to figure out a totally new beta for the pockety holds and my beta for the crux worked actually better for me than the most common one!!! So every cloud has a silver lining I ques ;) On the last day I dry fired from the easy beginning, pulled back up, and climbed the route. I was super happy even tho I didn’t send!!! Before that trip I had got my self a non-functional-over-reaching syndrom so basically a little burn out :D. I’m a slow learner but I hope I have assimilated something by now.


I totally surprised my self by almost doing Lucifer on my first red pointing day this year 2019!!! I wanted to show the route for my French friend Melissa Le Neve and ended up trying the moves myself too and indicate my present shape.

Lucifer contains pockets and I haven’t been climbing on pockets forever. I felt after the crux before a massive jug rest for 6 times and one-hanged the route for 6 times in total. I thought that I could send the route in couple of days.

After already a big day, I went to the Motherlode to climb with headlamps on and got sick for a solid week!!! It took another week to recover from that and it started snowing as well. I sent the Lucifer on the last sunny day after that and went home (cause the weather forecast said that it would snow for another week!!!)

We came up with the lode-challenge-idea where the idea is to climb in a dark with headlamps on, lead the route and then free-snake it till blow :D. Free-snaking means toproping the route when the rope comes only from the chains. Therefore failuring means a big swing! Weeeee!

After going through something worse (like a bone bruise on my wrist and overall shitty fall) I had got mentally stronger and I didn’t care about not sending anything hard. The route wouldn’t go anywhere and I could do it eventually! . All I wanted to do was focusing on having a good time and be able to scrumble up on something.

I got obsessed about Lucifer though and started to try that one. Working on Lucifer wasn’t serious red pointing and I think that’s one of the main reasons why I did it even I wasn’t having the best shape of my life. After every single day, I went back home smiling. Except on one day…. I was walking back and feeling disappointed, frustrated and sad. That was the moment when I decided to walk away and climb on something else. I didn’t want climbing to be like that.

We did some random easy stuff with my friends Jessa and Sarah on the next sunny day. They also had a slab challenge for me at the Left side of chocolate factory! I think that route was one of the hardest onsights of that year hahaha! Especially when there was no draws or eather chalk. I think the route was called a “Butane Junky”? After just doing something random and mixing up the routines, I felt fresh body- and mind vice and super motivated to jump back on Lucifer!!! It worked!

Doing a totally different warm up in a different place hacks the head so that I feel less pressure since I don’t focus on analyzing how I feel. Forgetting the harness releases pressure well too but I don’t wanna repeat that 😜.

Pretty scenery from Ventura’s place where I stayed and walked down to the cliffs. Dario and Emily Ventura also arranges beautiful wedding parties there ( Scenic Farm Wedding Venue ). Here’s Lindsey from California pointing at the Chocolate Factory

Pretty scenery from Ventura’s place where I stayed and walked down to the cliffs. Dario and Emily Ventura also arranges beautiful wedding parties there (Scenic Farm Wedding Venue). Here’s Lindsey from California pointing at the Chocolate Factory


I stayed at Dario Ventura’s place above the Motherlode. So I didn’t need a car to get to the cliffs. I really enjoyed walking down from the house and scrambbling back up in dark! Thanks Venturas for giving me a home in the Red! I feel like I have my own Kentuckyfamily there <333
Emily Ventura is amazing baker too and they’re arranging wedding parties on their beautiful property above the gorge where you have a pretty scenery to the Chocolate Factory. Check it out if you are eather a climber or not!!!!


It got below 0 degrees but we were still super stoked to climb with my other passionate climbing friend Mina. I hate when the conditions forces me to not climb so I rather make circumstances beneficial for me ;) . Thanks for Mountain Hardwear for designing the Ghost Whisperer down pants which has saved me for thousands of times. We went till dark with Mina Leslie-Wujastyk in the Gorge! She’s an amazing athlete from Brittain and sponsored by 5.10, Arcteryx etc.

I got a lot of new friends on this trip!!! Here’s just a couple of them! Like I’m missing pics of Gita and Zack (dangit… :/ ) <333 Misss you all!!!

Pictures by Andy WIckström (2018) of me on Lucifer.