Belgian Max Deelen manages his first 8C boulder with „The Big Island“ in Fontainebleau. For the 1.93 m tall climber was the 20th ascent of Vincent Ponchon’s classic in Fontainebleau. The boulder from 2010 is one of the most repeated bouldering in grade 8C and is often the first 8C boulder to be climbed.

„I have been coming to Fontainebleau for 4 years now, and the big island was always a dream project for me. I waited until I felt I was fit enough to try it, and that time came April 2019. My first session was very promising, and I could do the boulder in two parts. From that point, I became obsessed with trying to send the boulder and I trained harder than ever before. This trip I went to the problem again, and it felt a lot better. I was able to send the island on my first session on this trip. This was a confidence boost, and after a good rest day I came back and on my first go, I reached the top jug but fell unexpectedly. From this point on I knew it could happen any attempt, and it became more of a mental than physic“ battle. Luckily some attempts later, and with a lot of encouragement from my good friend Nathan de Groen, I completed the big island. This moment my dream became reality and all the hard training paid off. About my height, I think that in Fontainebleau I have an advantage most of the time, as by nature the problems here tend to be quite morpho.“