Watch Chaehyun Seo Cruise ‘La Rambla,’ the Hardest Climb of Her Life

While I sat back and watched on my computer screen, Chaehyun Seo demolished La Rambla (9a+). And one word planted itself in my mind: mastery.

News that the Korean became the second woman to climb the benchmark Siurana, Spain route arrived in November. Now, audiences worldwide are welcome to watch — and for anybody interested in sport climbing technique and pacing, I strongly advise it.

In the video, Seo’s decisive movement makes it clear she has committed the route to memory in high fidelity. And her steady motion and calm demeanor indicate she’s fit enough to blow it away.


Seo also shows a disciplined tendency to clip behind or below herself (rather than pulling armfuls of rope to clip above), and brings it all together for a performance that’s hard to critique.

Back on the ground, she beams widely, dances giddily, and says only, “I did it.”

There’s no need for her to explain; what good are words to a master athlete at work?

Sam Anderson

Sam Anderson spent his 20s as an adventure rock climber, scampering throughout the western U.S., Mexico, and Thailand to scope out prime stone and great stories. Life on the road gradually transformed into a seat behind the keyboard, where he acted as a founding writer of the AllGear Digital Newsroom and earned 1,500+ bylines in four years on topics from pro rock climbing to slingshots and scientific breakthroughs.