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Slouppi • View topic - Grades

Slouppi

Rock climbing and Bouldering in Finland
It is currently Wed Nov 14, 2018 19:31

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 Post subject: Grades
PostPosted: Tue May 11, 2004 15:28 
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Joined: Wed Jan 02, 2002 02:00
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Location: Vantaa
I know it has been done before but...

Having been to a number of different bouldering spots over the last week or two with topos I'm totally confused to what the lower bouldering grades are on about. Both at Vessölandet and at Viirilä the topos seem to mix Finnish bouldering grades with Font grades, or are they all Font grades? At Viirilä I did the two "5-" problems first go with out any problems, but failed on a "5" at Vessölandet after lots of attempts etc etc. At I know the good boulders probably don't care too much, but there must be people bouldering at lower grades who have thought about this.

At the end of the day it doesn't matter too much, but it is annoying when you do one problem of the grade and totally fail on another supposedly of the same grade! There is 4 at Liljendal where I failed to even get off the ground... but enough of my incompetence.

When I find the perfect boulder out there in the woods, in revenge I'm going to give all the problems either V grades or English tech grades but not actually say what grading system I've used. :lol:


Last edited by Toby on Tue May 11, 2004 15:53, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Tue May 11, 2004 15:49 
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Joined: Sat Dec 22, 2001 02:00
Posts: 391
Location: Helsinki / Vaasa
Thats the spirit!
Grades are just somebodys opinions of the difficulty of that particular problem. They are not percise science.I do not care if you grade them with tech grades -it could even be fun -Just as long as you give it stars (between * and ***** ) to mark the quality of the problem -quite like they do with movies and restaurants...

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PostPosted: Tue May 11, 2004 16:38 
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Joined: Tue Oct 15, 2002 02:00
Posts: 75
With regards to the grades at Vessölandet there are two points to mention:

1.Some of the climbs have only been done by 1 or 2 persons therefore more feedback is required in order to find the right grade. Which problems are you concerned about?

2.The problems at Vessölandet have been graded with both the Font and Finnish grading system. The grades Below Font 6a are graded with the Finnish system (i.e. 5+, 5, 5-, 4+, 4) those Font 6a and above use Font grades. There are two reasons for this:

a. Font grades that are below 6a can get confused with Finnish grades, grades that Finns are more familiar with.

b.The Font grading system does not have grades 5- and 4-. I personally find this a bit odd since 5+ and 4+ are used.

I do agree that it is a shame that little attention is paid to grades that below 6a or even 6b. Whether it be bouldering or sports climbing there are some very nice problems and routes in the low-grade range that deserve to be graded better.

Cheers,

P.S. I would not use English tech grades (unless revenge through confusion is the objective) peak bouldering grades are my favourite (i.e. B grades). They cover the low grades pretty well.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed May 12, 2004 09:11 
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Location: Vantaa
Jody wrote:
P.S. I would not use English tech grades (unless revenge through confusion is the objective) peak bouldering grades are my favourite (i.e. B grades). They cover the low grades pretty well.


But B grades are just SOOooo 1990s darling, and English tech grades positively retro...

More seriously it appears in the UK from what I read V grades are becoming dominant. Rockfax is using them in all its bouldering guides, as has Simon Panton in his N Wales new boulder guide. Dave Mcleod is writing a bouldering guide to Scotland for the SMC (will wonders ever cease? The SMC boulders!?!), it will be interesting to see if he uses V or Fb. Perhaps we should get the Finns who now seem to be resident under the Keel at Almscliff to come back over and regrade everything in V grades! :wink:

I've never really got Finnish bouldering grades, I was told originally that it is a full grade lower than a route grade, but for example some of the 4s at Vessolandet didn't feel much different from 4 or 4+ moves on routes, and the 5-s at Viirilä (probs 1 and 2) can't have been any harder than 5- or 5 on a route. Then again one of the sit start problems given 5 at Viirila I couldn't really get off the ground on! (Fat arse probably to blame there...)

I remember a problem at Taivaskallio which is 5- which took me maybe 5 or 6 goes to get.

Of course some problems are your 'style' (for me crimpy/slabby) and others not (overhanging/slopers), but still there seems to be a fair amount of variation around.


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PostPosted: Wed May 12, 2004 09:39 
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Joined: Thu Feb 21, 2002 02:00
Posts: 86
Location: Espoo
I guess grading can be a bit difficult;

I've always thought that people can only grade stuff approximately within 3-5 grade-ticks within their own ability.
eg. a strong climber doing 8a's could grade routes of 7a-8b with reasonable accuracy... because if you think about it, how on earth should he know whether a route is a 6a, or a 6b. The route seems really easy to him/her... oh wait, was it really easy or really really easy or slightly easier than a really easy but not as easy as a really really easy. Or should he/she really even care.

and what about the the accuracy of estimation going below 6... goes even worse.

The same goes the other way around aswell.
Being a weaker climber, I don't imagine I could do an accuracte grading whether a climb could be a 7c+ or a 8a. It's just impossibly hard for me.

And I'm not saying _all_ the grades/routes in Finland were done by strong people, but some routes on some areas are. And yes, ofcourse the style affects this too as you said.

I don't know if this makes any sense, but this is just my thoughts about the issue.


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PostPosted: Wed May 12, 2004 09:52 
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Joined: Fri Apr 26, 2002 02:00
Posts: 276
I once met an ex-pat Briton in Yosemite. He's name is Kevin Thaw, you may recognize it...?

When I asked him for the reason to leave England and move overseas, he replied something like this:

"I got sick of that neverending chit-chat over grades and ethics practised by those who ain't even climb that much. I just wanted to climb harder and faster - and in the States there is zero bullshit and so much more climbing!"

No offence Toby, but who cares really about the grades? Just go climbing and try to find those Anssi's multistar-problems and routes, there are loads of 'em in Finland!

One example is Hightimes in Vaasa, lowgrade but highclass - even according to topguns - a classic!


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PostPosted: Wed May 12, 2004 10:31 
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Joined: Tue Oct 15, 2002 02:00
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MRoutsi wrote:
"I got sick of that neverending chit-chat over grades and ethics practised by those who ain't even climb that much. I just wanted to climb harder and faster - and in the States there is zero bullshit and so much more climbing!"


Hmmm…

I find it hard to believe that Kevin moved to the US solely because of the chit-chat. Another reason just might have been the tons of beautiful rock and ice.

I agree that in Britain there is probably too much "chit-chat" but I believe in Finland there is probably too little. And hey if you don’t like discussion then don’t read it.


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PostPosted: Wed May 12, 2004 10:40 
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Jody wrote:
I agree that in Britain there is probably too much "chit-chat" but I believe in Finland there is probably too little. And hey if you don’t like discussion then don’t read it.


maybe there is too little but then again, maybe it's how we like it.


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PostPosted: Wed May 12, 2004 10:47 
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Posts: 216
Location: Vantaa
MRuotsi - No offence taken, but 1) I do think the hippy-'lets-just-climb-and-enjoy-the-karmic-experience'-line isn't really very realistic. In reality everyone likes to compare, just look at the thousands signed up and counting points on 8a.nu or even the news section on Slouppi - people are interested in grades. Kevin Thaw made sure he had a photographer along when he did his new E9 at Wimberry after all. That doesn't take anything away from the acheivement, but he wasn't slow in coming forward to the mags with news about the ascent.

2) I'm at work and can't go climbing despite the lovely weather, and there are only so many newspaper articles about abuses in Abu Ghraib or journal articles on comparative counter-terrorism policies I can take before I much prefer to natter with other climbers about cool routes/problems including what grade they are!

3) Finally there is certain air amongst good some climbers (I'm not accusing you of this) of suggesting 'why should those bumblies care what grade their routes are - they're all easy afterall?' but caring a lot if their latest project is 7c+ or 8a. It's a bit like saying the Pub league football teams don't really need to count the goals because its not like it matters...

I try and climb a couple of times a week and have been doing so for nearly 15 yrs, so I guess Mr Thaw can't really put me in the "don't even climb much" category...

Anyway - this thread was meant to be about what grading system is being used for easier bouldering problems, that's all.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed May 12, 2004 11:40 
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Joined: Wed Jun 12, 2002 02:00
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Location: Helsinki
I would say it's the finnish grading system that's mainly being used with the fours and fives. It seems to me that 6a is usually where it goes to french. I guess we will never know wether it's finnish or french when it's under 6a. Though, I once saw a grading comparison table with the french grades going from 1 to 3 as solids and 4a being the first grade given the letter.


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PostPosted: Wed May 12, 2004 11:43 
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Joined: Thu Oct 17, 2002 02:00
Posts: 4
Hi Toby.

I invite you to visit Turku for some very nice bouldering. Just few words of warning before you come. On newer areas it is customary to grade route to approximately 5 or 5+ if a 7b climber manages to do problem on first go. Now don't get me wrong, these all are good quality routes and there is lots of them, but you just have to be aware of this custom before throwing your shoes to nearby lake or burning you pad.

Seriously, I think on most areas grades are pretty much correct. There might be some variations specially on lower ones, but after few tries you'll know what to expect from rest of areas problems and I think that's the main point.


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PostPosted: Wed May 12, 2004 11:52 
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Joined: Wed Jun 12, 2002 02:00
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Location: Helsinki
I wonder what the grade most people are able to climb is?


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PostPosted: Wed May 12, 2004 11:58 
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Location: Vantaa
Marko wrote:
Though, I once saw a grading comparison table with the french grades going from 1 to 3 as solids and 4a being the first grade given the letter.


Rockfax http://www.rockfax.com/publications/bgrades.html notes that Font 5 can be anything from english 5b to 6b which is a huge difference (Finnish route 5+ to 7something)! So in that sense, using Finnish grades makes sense just as long as people know what Finnish bouldering grades are.

Teppo - Dave has taken me to some of the Turku bouldering areas which were great but like you said the grades were dead hard. There obviously aren't enough other forms of entertainment in that little village that means you lot all climb too much and get too good. :wink:


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PostPosted: Wed May 12, 2004 12:20 
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Joined: Tue Oct 15, 2002 02:00
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olli wrote:
maybe there is too little but then again, maybe it's how we like it.


"we" what are you talking for a whole nation? Bloody arrogant dont you think!!

Anyway if you dont like discussion of grades on a climbing forum then dont read it, nobody is forcing you.

Going to a internet forum (i.e. "A medium of open discussion or voicing of ideas") to complain about discussion is like going to a beer rally and complaining about the presence of beer or going to a Drag Queen convention and complaining about all the men in women's clothes.
In short its plain daft.


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PostPosted: Wed May 12, 2004 12:44 
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Posts: 264
Jody wrote:
olli wrote:
maybe there is too little but then again, maybe it's how we like it.


"we" what are you talking for a whole nation? Bloody arrogant dont you think!!

Anyway if you dont like discussion of grades on a climbing forum then dont read it, nobody is forcing you.

Going to a internet forum (i.e. "A medium of open discussion or voicing of ideas") to complain about discussion is like going to a beer rally and complaining about the presence of beer or going to a Drag Queen convention and complaining about all the men in women's clothes.
In short its plain daft.


i don't think it's arrogant. we make the rules and if the rest of the world won't follow - well, blame yourself. see, you make the rules of world politics and the rest of the world must follow, otherwise they are wrong. this is different game.


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