Dai Koyamada

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Dai Koyamada (小山田大)
Personal information
Nationality Japanese
Born (1976-08-23) 23 August 1976 (age 40)
Kagoshima
Occupation Professional rock climber
Height 5 feet 5 inches (1.65 m)
Weight 128 pounds (58 kg)
Website koyamada.dai.hiho.jp
Climbing career
Type of climber Boulderer, sport climbing
Highest grade
Updated on 19 April 2017.

Dai Koyamada (小山田大) is a Japanese rock climber and known as one of the premier boulderers of his generation. He has also put up or repeated hard sport climbs. Dai was born on 23 August 1976 in Kagoshima and has been climbing since 1993.[1] Despite his shorter stature at 165 cm and 58 kg[2] Dai has excelled at a wide style of rock climbing at the highest level of difficulty. In 1996, Koyamada won the Japanese National Championship. This is the event which allowed him to become a professional rock climber.[3] Four years later in 2000 Koyamada left the competitions, because he realized "The real nature of my climbing resides in crags".[1] Dai made a name for himself on the rock early on by completing the first ascent (FA) of Logical Progression (9a) on 2001 November 27 in Joyama, Japan.[4] At the time this was considered one of the most difficult sport climbs in the world. Koyamada was made world famous in 2004, when he journeyed to Australia and repeated every problem at the Hollow Mountain Cave (HMC) in the Grampians, problems put up by Fred Nicole and Klem Loskot and some of Australia's top boulderers. He then proceeded to link-up the problems in the HMC for the first ascent (FA) of The Wheel of Life (V16/8C+) on 2004 May 12.[5] This climb has stood the test of time and remains a world class test piece for top level climbers. The level of V16 has been downgraded over the years. The second ascent of the The Wheel of Life was by Chris Webb Parsons on 13 Oct 2007.[6] Later in 2004 Koyamada traveled to Switzerland and repeated Dreamtime on November 09.[1] At the time Dreamtime was considered one of the hardest boulder problems in the world and is the first problem to ever receive a V15/8C grade. It has since broken and downgraded.[7] On October15, 2005 Koyamada repeated Action Directe (9a) in the Frankenjura, Germany and proclaimed it harder than any other route that he has climbed.[8] Dai continues to push the limits of hard rock climbing. On April 4, 2017 at the age of 40 Koyamada climbed a new personal limit with the first ascent of Nayuta 8C+(V16) in Gero, Japan.[9]

Notable Ascents[edit]

Koyamada has possibly the longest tick list of difficult boulder problem ascents and hard boulder first ascents in the world. The only climber that compares is Daniel Woods.

  • 8C+/V16:[10][11][12]
    • Nayuta (那由多) - Gero (JPN) - 4 April 2017 - FA
    • The Story of Two Worlds low start - Cresciano (USA) - 22 March 2012 - Following an internet controversy contesting Koyamada's hand positions to start the boulder problem in 2010, Koyamada returned to honor his name and establish his own, more difficult low start. [13]
  • 8C/V15:[14][15][16]
    • Nehanna (ネハンナ) - Gero (JPN) - 4 June 2016 - FA
    • Rokudou (六道) - Toyamagawa (JPN) - 25 March 2016 - FA
    • Meikyoushisui (明鏡止水) - Toyamagawa (JPN) - 18 March 2016 - Second ascent 8B+/8C.
    • Horizon (ホライゾン) - Mt. Hiei (JPN) - 8 May 2015 - FA
    • Kawaki no umi / Sea of Dry (乾きの海) - Minamata (JPN) - 31 March 2014 - FA, 8B+/8C.
    • Vanitas (ヴァニタス) - Horai (JPN) - 6 February 2014 - FA
    • Eternal (エターナル) - Hinokage (JPN) - 1 May 2013 - FA
    • Four Dimensional (4次元) - Hinokage (JPN) - 21 March 2013 - FA, 8B+/8C.
    • Floating World (浮世) - Ena (JPN) - 7 November 2012 - FA
    • Der mit dem Fels tanzt -Chironico (SUI) - 28 October 2012 - Second Ascent
    • Ukiyo (浮世) - Ena (JPN) - 12 July 2012 - FA
    • Daedalus Direct - Sustenpass (SUI) - 4 October 2004 - FA, 8B+/8C
    • In Search of Time Lost - Magic Wood (SUI) - 28 August 2011 - Second Ascent
    • The Story of Two Worlds - Cresciano (SUI) - 13 May 2010 -Second ascent of Dave Graham's classic boulder put up in 2005.[17]
    • Idea (イデア) - Horai (JPN) - 8 February 2010 - FA
    • Karamu - Japan (JPN) - 28 April 2009 - FA
    • Epitaph - Hourai (JPN) - 20 January 2009 - This first ascent took him over a year to complete, and he says it's the most beautiful line he has ever made the first ascent on.[18]
    • Euphoria (ユーフォリア) - Yatsue (JPN) - 20 March 2008 - FA
    • Bongo (ボンゴ) - Frankenjura (GER) - 28 October 2007 - FA, 40+ move roof climb.
    • Angama - Fontainebleau (FR) - 24 October 2006 - FA, Traverse
    • Hyper Ballad - Shiobara (JPN) - 31 March 2006 - FA
    • Hydrangea - Shiobara (JPN) - 22 April 2005 - First ascent by adding a sit-start to his Hydra (V13/8B, FA on 2004 December 20).[19]
    • Dreamtime - Cresciano (SUI) - 09 November 2004 - Although Dai has logged this ascent as V14 it was considered V15 at the time prior to broken holds. [20]
    • The Wheel of Life - Grampians (AUS) - 12 May 2004 - FA
    • Methuselahzation (メトセラゼーション) - Yatsue (JPN) - 8 February 2004 - FA
    • Byaku-dou - Hourai (JPN) - 11 November 2003 - first ascent.[21]
    • Hull Shea Nation (ハルシネーション) - Horai (JPN) - UNKNOWN - FA
  • Other Notable Ascents:

References[edit]

External links[edit]