The Belgian Siebe Vanhee struck again. On July 25, Siebe climb free the extremely difficult mulipitch route ‚Orbayu‘ (8c, 500m, 13 SL) at Naranjo De Bulnes in the Picos de Europa National Park in Spain.

„The cruxpitch of Orbayu is the first pitch of the original aid-climb Mediterraneo, opened in 1980. Orbayu is in fact the free version of Mediterraneo, with a different four-pitch start up to the original A3pitch (pitch 5).

This is why the crux pitch is protected by a mix of piton’s, ‘burriles’ (rivets), friends and nuts. Two bolts are added slightly to the right of the line of rivets to follow the logical freeclimbing path. On this picture, the bolts are just a bit higher to the right.“

The route first ascented artificially in 1980 and climbed free for the first time in 2009 by the Basque brothers Iker and Eneko Pou; it was free first repeated in 2011 by Nico Favresse and Adam Pustelnik, followed in 2014 by Cédric Lachat, in 2016 by Edu Marin and 2017 Gorka Karapeto.

Siebe was accompanied by the Spanish climber Ignacio Mulero and the filmmaker David “Campe” Lopez. The film of the ascent will probably be released this year.

Photos: (c) David Lopez Campe