Paul Robinson has made the first ascent of The Dragon’s Guardian (8C V15) in the Cederberg, South Africa. The Dragon’s Guardian tops
his streak of new boulder problems this season.
“I’m blown away speechless. Incredible effort,” photographer Jacques Van Zyl, who was shooting Robinson on the problem, commented on Instagram. “Watching
[Paul] on this turned my rulebook of what is possible inside out.”
Robinson, 28, discovered the boulder during his first trip to the area in 2014. “I ran over excited, not knowing what I would find underneath the roof,”
he wrote on Facebook. “I quickly spied an easier line that would later become Dragon’s Eye but to the left remained a nearly blank section
of perfect stone that almost begged to be climbed.
“That year, I could not visualize the line so I left without trying it.”
He returned to the Cederberg this June, and with a fresh perspective, found a sequence to span the sparse roof. “I eventually decided it could be feasible
and I began to give the project efforts,” he wrote. “Days went by on it, some good, some bad, but each day I learned and broke down the sequences one
The morning after a storm and under “perfect conditions,” Robinson sent the line. He named it The Dragon’s Guardian and suggested a grade of 8C/V15.
This season, Robinson has also established The Pharaoh’s Tomb (V13), Oak Island (V12/13), Sitting Cobra Cat (V11), Meow Tower (V11) and Algeria 374 (V8/9) in South Africa. “Beyond lucky to be back in such an amazing place!!!” he posted on Facebook last month. “25+
first ascents in the past three days for the crew and counting.
“No words can describe what it is like for me to find and climb all of these first ascents; I just feel extremely lucky and grateful for the opportunity.”
Robinson has climbed at least 12 V15s, including his first ascent of Lucid Dreaming (V15) in the Buttermilks of Bishop, California.