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Alex Puccio on Grade Chasing and Climbing Media

People will always have their opinions and the sad thing is that when climbers take the inflated grade just to "look cooler" they might get crap from other professional climbers or climbers that are immersed in the sport, but to the majority that doesn't know any better they look "bad a**"!

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Alex Puccio. Photo:Joel Zerr
Joel Zerr

There’s something that really bothers me. I’m pretty frustrated with what it takes to be at the top level of our sport. I feel like I’m a pretty honest
climber and person and I will never be ok with taking a higher grade for a climb, just to get more recognition and publicity, just to be more “famous”
in our sport.

People will always have their opinions and the sad thing is that when climbers take the inflated grade just to “look cooler” they might get crap from other
professional climbers or climbers that are immersed in the sport, but to the majority that doesn’t know any better they look “bad a**”!

Sure I could have said I’ve done another V14 or more V13s and even flashed a V12, but that’s not me and I wouldn’t have been honest to myself and to the
media. I will never be one of those climbers to do that just to get ahead! And actually some of the climbs that have been the toughest for me have
not been V14 or even V13. There are quiet a few V12s that I have done that were physically and mentally the hardest for me because of the massive moves
and slopey holds.

I like to seek out the “non girly” or “non shortie” climbs because I like a challenge! I don’t want to be defined by my gender and height and no one will
tell me what I can and can’t do!

And I won’t just go seek out a climb with a big number attached to it just because it’s my style and it would be easier for me.

If I get inspired by a V15 then I will work one and if I so happen to be the first female to do that then so be it, but I’m not in a race for that!
I do what I do because I love it!

A climb has to inspire me for me to want to try my hardest on it and have fun working it, otherwise it’s meaningless. I will always keep pushing myself,
but honestly!!!

—Alex Puccio

Blood, Sweat & Bad Conditions – Alex Puccio’s Battle with Jade: