“Climbing is a long term, lifelong journey.”
The climber who goes the by the name of Chris Omprakash Sharma has scaled the heights of climbing in the world. He is the face of the Indian-origin Americans in this field. He treated his journey as a getaway pleasure rather than a job. According to him, keeping things enjoyable has not burnt him out yet.
Chris’s Humble Background
Chris was born to Gita Jahn and Bob Sharma in California, US. He began his career from a local rock climbing school in Santa Cruz, California. In parallel to his sporty ambition, he groomed at Mount Madonna School in California.
“The First Climb is The Best Climb”
Chris shifted to the city of Bishop in California where he climbed “The Mandala”, the first of his career. This climb was a V12 difficulty level and posed problems for other climbers. Chris Sharma, however, sailed through smoothly. When asked by journalists or documentary scriptwriters about his happy-go-lucky nature, he corrects them. His intention of rock-climbing is a process of being centered and being in spiritual practice. For him, the vertical and horizontal planes are just a means to stay in the present, not giving a thought about the harsh realities of the world.
Jewels In The Climber’s Crown
Being a Lead Climber, having a Redpoint of 5.15c is not a walk in the park. From his V12 bouldering grades in his initial climbs, the rock-climbing legend jumped to V15 bouldering grade. Again, not an easy feat. A 2008 climb of the Californian Clark Mountain was enough to make him the contenders of the top spot in the rock-climbing hall of fame. The 250-ft ascent by Sharma was the fastest in the category, and the record stays unshattered.
Notable ascents in the V15 category are:
1. Wild Practise – Magic Wood (CHE) in August 2004. The feat was repeated the next year.
2. Fitness witnessing closely – Ozarks (USA) – First ascent, March 2005. This was A 12-meter elevation difficulty.
3. Witness the Fitness in Spain – Cova de l’Ocell (Barcelona, ESP): January 2016. It is a very prestigious event and everyone takes part in it.
Breaking The Barriers
The renaming of Ceuse to “Realisation” after the successful climb in 2001 is a perfect example of how Chris did not believe in traditional practices. To keep climbing as a continuous hobby and not a monotonous schedule, he prefers doing things out of the track. Thus, the route “Biographie” located in the Hautes-Alpes (France) was renamed to “Realisation”. For more challenges, Sharma traveled all the way to Spain establishing new records on limestone cliff climbs. The texture of limestone cliffs is entirely different from US rock settlements. But, for Chris, it was a dream run. He established records like a cakewalk and no doubt, all his competitors envied his glory run. However, they could not help admitting that he was indeed a legendary climber.