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La Sportiva ambassador Caroline ciavaldini will be at Kendall Mountain Festival this Saturday, for the premiere of Shifiting Dreams, the movie about her historical ascent of Le voie Petit.
Get back to the last June. Get back to when France's La Sportiva ambassador Caroline Ciavaldini has completed what she has always described as her "biggest project ever": a two-day repeat of Voie Petit, the difficult and beautiful outing up the East Face of Grand Capucin in the Mont Blanc massif. This route, a 450m 8b mix of trad and bolt climbing at 3838m, was first ascended in 1997 by Ciavaldini's mentors Arnaud Petit and Stéphanie Bodet together with Pascal Gaudin and Jean-Paul Petit, and freed in 2005 by Alexander Huber. Now, that moment, that impressive achievement, a one-year porject and dream, is now tourned into a movie: Shifting Dreams.
Caroline Ciavaldini has grew as a sport climber on a tropical island in the Indien Ocean, and after bidding farewell to a highly successful competition climbing career, she decided to broaden her climbing horizons and, aided by her husband James Pearson, rapidly transferred her sports climbing skills to trad climbing.
After some daring E8 repeats in Wales and Scotland - a lifetime's ambition for many -, last year Caro’s thirst for adventure pushed her to places she had never been before: at high altitudes, between ice and snow, in order to climb the Voie Petit, an alpine route at 3500 m of altitude, 8b max, 450m long. And nothing else than the hardest high altitude rock route in the Alps.
Spending the entire year training specifically and learning how to climb granite at La Pedriza and honing her mental strength on British trad, Caroline attempted the route 4 times before getting her successful redpoint, in order to learn the moves of the harder pitches at half height.
Unlike previous climbs, this project was seen by Caro as an individual challenge, something that she wanted to face counting only on her strenght, so even her partner was forced to acting as the belayer, while young French mountain guide Marion Poitevin was asked to provide logistical support for glacier travel, altitude management and general mountain safety.
After dwo days spent climbing on the wall and one night sleeping on the mythical Bonatti ledge, Caroline has faced even the last few pitches of 8 a and 7b+, reaching the top, reaching her dream.
"I was focused, and mistakes didn’t matter, because there was this enormous bubble of motivation behind me. There was only a few easier pitches and a 7b+ between me an a success, and part of me knew at that point that I had it. But I focused on every proposition one after the other, had to redo the 7b+ twice to succeed it, and reached the summit. That was it, It was done, officially. My big one year dream had become a reality."
And now, that dream and those moments are told in a movie. Shifting Dreams, will be premiered this Friday at Kendall Mountain Festival, and available on free download on the same day!
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