Scottish climber Dave MacLeod gave everything he had to forge a new line up the center of a massive amphitheater roof to the summit of Cima Ovest, in the Italian Dolomites last summer.
“It was both the hardest and definitely the finest route I’ve climbed in the Dolomites,” MacLeod wrote in a blog post.
Despite a series of past injuries and what locals claimed to be the worst summer weather in decades, Macleod persevered and shattered his personal expectations, sending the difficult, lengthy route on his last day.
Project Fear weighs in at 11 new pitches—5.11a, 5.11c, 5.11d, 5.11b, 5.12c, 5.13c, 5.14b, 5.11c, 5.11c, 5.10a, 5.10b—before merging with the Cassin route to reach the summit of Cima Ovest.
The climb was documented in this beautiful, short film, PROJECT FEAR, from Coldhouse Collective and Mountain Equipment:
Dave MacLeod lives in the Scottish highlands town of Letterfinlay with his wife, Claire, and cat, Puss Puss. His work consists of climbing, writing, coaching, lecturing and making films.
He is no stranger to establishing bold, new routes. MacLeod began climbing at 15 and it wasn’t long before he ticked off most of the hardest rock and winter climbs in Scotland. For the last decade, he has been making first ascents in every climbing discipline. His route Rhapsody was the first E11 graded climb in the world, and his climbs Echo Wall (E11) and Anubis (XII) are among the hardest summer and winter trad climbs in the world.