Mind control, 8c+, by Caroline Ciavaldini

Caroline Ciavaldini, Mind Control

Caroline in the first crux of Mind Control. Photo by Franciso Taranto JR

On the 5th of March, just one day before her birthday, Caroline managed to fight her way to the top of Mind Control (8c+/35) at the Spanish super cliff of Oliana. 

Having climbed the route a few days before, I had a pretty good idea of the difficulties involved, and decided to devote my rest day to being the perfect little Gri-Gri girl (boy) to give her the best chance of success.

My brand new 9.1mm Beal Joker was pulled out to help with the rope drag.  We also worked out a nice method of climbing the first section with 2 ropes, clipping the first 5 or 6 Quick draw’s on one line then dropping it at the rest to allow the other line to run freely through the remainder of the route.

This is also the first time I have used a 100m rope! I remember back to my early days on the grit where a 50m would seem excessive – now, 80m seem short and on cliffs like Oliana, often leaving the climber dangling in space whilst the belayer works out how to get them down!

She clipped the belay on her second try of the day, 3rd red-point in total, with another inspirational display of grit and determination – there was no way she was letting go of the final tricky tufa.

With another project in the bag, there is nothing else to do today but lay happily in the sun, watch the beautiful view, and enjoy the company of good friends – what more could you wish for on your birthday.

Caroline Ciavaldini is sponsored by: Edelrid, The North Face, La Sportiva, Adidas Eyewear, Waxx underwear and Powerbar.

10 Responses to Mind control, 8c+, by Caroline Ciavaldini

  1. sam Mar 7, 2012 at 12:46 pm #

    “My brand new 9.1mm Beal Joker was pulled out to help with the rope drag.”

    …as opposed to any other rope, of course.

    Just to point out, these kinds of sad marketing attempts do NOT add to articles, although I wouldn’t mind seeing this taken to the logical extreme in which everything the ‘athlete’ does has a brand name attached.

    That would at least be funny.

  2. Justin Mar 7, 2012 at 1:24 pm #

    I don’t think there was much of a marketing attempt there… Sounds like she had a custom made 100 meter long Joker!?
    There are quite a few other options to the 9.1mm Beal Joker

    8.9mm Tendon Master

    – 8.9mm Edelrid Swift

    – 9.4mm Blue Water Dominator

    – 9.4mm Roca Lo

    8.9mm Mammut Serenity (Not available in SA)

  3. sam Mar 7, 2012 at 4:13 pm #

    So, a ROPE then, Justin?

    And what’s with not giving her other sponsors some airtime? For example, I’d be interested in how her Waxx underwear aided her ascent…


  4. Alan Mar 7, 2012 at 7:07 pm #


  5. Rob Mar 7, 2012 at 9:11 pm #

    It says there that she is NOT sponsored by Beal.

  6. Justin Mar 8, 2012 at 7:32 am #

    Haha, thanks Rob for the attention to detail… clearly missed by Sam and I (and I thought I was going to win this one 😉

  7. Jimbo Mar 8, 2012 at 8:30 am #

    I’m with sam on this one. I think mentioning the rope name so explicitly detracted from the article. Who wrote the article anyway? Someone sponsored by beal?

  8. Ian Mar 12, 2012 at 11:03 am #

    To be honest, I’m more interested in the following:

    She’s sponsored by

    Waxx underwear????

    That’s one step away from having climbers sponsored by Wonder Bra or Victoria’s Secret. Not that I got a problem with that:-)


  9. Ian Mar 12, 2012 at 11:08 am #

    You couldn’t make this shit up:-)
    WAXX Underwear design funky underwear for men and women with a distinctive, urban edge that give exceptional fit and comfort in super soft, stretchy fabric. With daring, provocative prints and eye-catching,vibrant colours this extreme sports inspired underwear has a cult following and is uniquely packaged in a print coordinated metal tube complete with free keyring…..

    Like I said before: PURE EVIL….





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