Become a Member

Get access to more than 30 brands, premium video, exclusive content, events, mapping, and more.

Already have an account? Sign In

Become a Member

Get access to more than 30 brands, premium video, exclusive content, events, mapping, and more.

Already have an account? Sign In

Brands

News

Sébastian Bouin Claims Third Ascent of Chilam Balam (5.15b), Spain

Bouin's was the third ascent and his hardest send yet.

Lock Icon

Become a member to unlock this story and receive other great perks.

Already have an Outside Account? Sign in

Outside+ Logo

All-Access
Intro Offer
$3.99 / month*

  • A $500 value with 25+ benefits including:
  • Access to all member-only content on all 17 publications in the Outside network like Rock and Ice, Climbing, Outside, Backpacker, Trail Runner and more
  • Annual subscription to Climbing magazine.
  • Annual gear guides for climbing, camping, skiing, cycling, and more
  • Gaia GPS Premium with hundreds of maps and global trail recommendations, a $39.99 value
  • Outside Learn, our new online education hub loaded with more than 2,000 videos across 450 lessons including 6 Weeks to Stronger Fingers and Strength Training for Injury Prevention
  • Premium access to Outside TV and 1,000+ hours of exclusive shows
  • Annual subscription to Outside magazine
Join Outside+

*Outside memberships are billed annually. Print subscriptions available to U.S. residents only. You may cancel your membership at anytime, but no refunds will be issued for payments already made. Upon cancellation, you will have access to your membership through the end of your paid year. More Details

Séb Bouin.

Sébastian Bouin, of France, clipped the chains of the 80-meter monster Chilam Balam (5.15b) this week, claiming the third ascent of the famous—and controversial—Spanish route.

Bouin began working the 22-bolt endurance test-piece, located at Villanueva del Rosario in the Andalusia region of Spain, in February. He made quick progress on the lower section but was stumped by a bouldery section up higher. Bouin returned to work the route earlier this month—along with the Spaniards Edu Marin and Dani Andrada—and reached the anchors this week.

In 2003, Bernabé Fernández reported climbing the route and proposed the unprecedented grade of 9b+ (5.15c)—two grades harder than Chris Sharma’s benchmark 5.15a Realization/Biographie in Céüse, France.

Both the 5.15c grade and the legitimacy of Fernández’s first ascent were questioned by the climbing world.

In 2011, Adam Ondra made the first repeat of the route—after three days of projecting—and suggested a “lower end” 9b/5.15b. Ondra may have cleared the air regarding the route’s difficulty, but the legitimacy of Fernández’s ascent remains a mystery.

As for 22-year-old Bouin, Chilam Balam is the first 5.15b in his growing tick-list of impressive sends. In 2012, he made the first repeat of La Madonne (9a+/5.15a) in Luberon, and in 2014, the first repeat of Staphylocoque (9a+/5.15a) at Pic St. Loup, both in France.

Other notable ascents of Bouin’s include Era Vella (5.14d), Tierra Negra (5.14d) and Perez Victimas (5.14d) in Margalef, Spain and Little Badder (5.14d) in Flatanger Cave, Norway.

Click Here to Watch the Video


Adam Ondra on Chilam Balam (5.15b): 


Also Read

Séb Bouin Tames Monster 5.15a/b in France

Also Watch

VIDEO: Séb Bouin – First ascent of La Côte d’Usure (5.15a)