Alex Johnson flashes Luminance (V9 highball)

posted by dpm on 12/09/2012

Blasting through Bishop, California on her way back east for Christmas, Alex Johnson made a quick stop at the Buttermilks and flashed Luminance (V9). Luminance was first climbed by Shawn Diamond back in 2008 and suggested at V11, probably due to the fear factor of the scary problem. The final lunge move to the lip comes over a 'pit' of sorts that no one wants to fall into. Though it's seen quite a few ascents now, the problem still has a fierce reputation. Wills Young writes on his Bishop Bouldering Blog:

"Mark (Heal) made it look SO easy," said Alex. "He showed me the beta, told me what footholds he used, and which ones Max [Zolotukhin] had used."
Alex was second to the plate and said she pulled onto the start and into a zone where nothing mattered but gaining the top. With great beta, a positive attitude, and no hesitation she cruised through it first try."

Wills also notes on his blog that three other climbers sent the line that day and Isaac Caldiero made a similar ground-up flash ascent of the line last month. Read the report by Wills Young here.

Below are a few videos of Luminance, showing just how intimidating this line can be. Nice job Alex!

Isaac Caldiero on the first ground-up flash ascent of Luminance.

Jake Novotny on Luminance and the Mandala (V12). 

Joe Maier on Luminance.

...and Alex Biale gets the jitters.