... things often still look blurry, but at least it's getting light outside.
In the meantime, Kruk has released a statement, David Lama has described his ascent, and all sorts of comments have appeared.
Kruk's and Kennedy's reporting has been ambiguous at best. They have contradicted themselves about whether or not they had decided to chop the bolts on the way down in case of success before the ascent took place.
There were comments suggesting they freed everything but a pendulum, but in their statement, they describe more aid. It's not like they found an easier line than Lama, the A1 crack of Salvaterra's variation that they climbed was also the freeclimbing crux for Lama. Should they have left their line to a more talented climber to achieve a real by fair means ascent, which is free and without bolts? I think yes. Should that person chop anything? No.
Stretching their definition of by-fair-means much further than anything acceptable to many climbers may not have been a problem had they not let an act of violence follow their ascent.
People should be aware of the fact large controversies like this one represent the climbing world to the outside. Kruk and Kennedy quoted Zach Smith in their statement:
"As a society we have removed other mistakes, like the Berlin Wall. History doesn't stop. History is happening right now. Hopefully the bolts are history someday." - Zach Smith
That is one of the most shameful things I have ever read on a climbing website. You may find dumb comments on 8a.nu and get all upset, but this? How can someone compare the Maestri route and its bolts to the Berlin Wall? I assume that Smith, Kennedy and Kruk have only the faintest idea what the Berlin Wall was and represented, but what about the editors at R&I and Alpinist? They should have known better and just left that part of Kruk's spiel out. If they are convinced of the importance of themselves so much that they can't help themselves but make these comparisons, they should get properly informed first.
Comparing the removal of the Berlin Wall and the chopping a couple bolts is a disgrace, and makes climbers look like retarded idiots.
I am quite certain that had Lama chopped the headwall on his way down, the Americans on Supertopo and Garibotti would have been the first to run amok... Maybe they should follow his example and just climb.
The National Geographic has a very intersting unbiased article on the entire matter...
Alpinist, arguably the best climbing magazine right now, is risking to lose a lot of respect if they do not scotch any suspicion of nepotism on this affair and do some fair reporting on Lama and Ortner's ascent.
That ascent is not just a mere sidenote . . .