I knew that Adam Ondra had come to attempt the route on several occasions, but without success. This surprised me a bit, but regardless, it seemed that he had managed to set up almost all the moves. So, intrigued, toward mid-November 2020 I told my girlfriend for the first time that I wanted to take her to climb in a beautiful place, where the air was thinner. A place to take refuge and climb, even during this time of a thousand restrictions.
I took her to Baule, and I remember that her face lit up that day. Those eyes, blue like the sky, reflected the enthusiasm that I had felt the first time I went up there. Seeing her joy was the magic that managed to change the way I saw things.
We were alone, in a beautiful place, surrounded by complete silence. The only living things to visit us were eagles and chamois. I looked at her, I told her about that whole sad story that I had buried for some time, and she answered simply: “Try again! What do you care about all this? We’re here, you and me, so have fun climbing like you always do, and get rid of those pointless worries.”
It will seem absurd, but I’d never looked at it from that point of view. So, with a new outlook, I threw myself back onto that wall that I hadn’t touched for years and that my mind had by now completely forgotten. Having to find new and more difficult techniques now no longer weighed on me. It had become a challenge between me and the wall — nothing else mattered anymore. With this new lightness, after just two days I was able to make every single move on the route and to give shape to a dream that I thought had been destroyed forever.
On the third day I began to make some real attempts, completing the first part of the route called “O ce l’hai o ne hai bisogno” (“Either you have it or you need it”), which was initially graded 8b+ and had now become 8c/+. After that first part, a bit excited to be so high already, I lost concentration and fell. But the good thing was that I was finally happy and motivated. So I looked at Ilenia and said with a smile: “Apparently, I finally have some, but for the upper part I think I still need more!”