Ben West is is top UK climber, route setter and climbing coach. He is part of the British Bouldering Team and competes at a World Cup level. He recently came in to White Spider set the lower bouldering mezz and we're excited to have him back again next Thursday 16th Oct to set some lead routes. We caught up with Ben last time he was in to ask him a few questions and get to know him better……..
Ben West Competing at Blokfest 2014
Name: Ben West
Where are you from: Bristol
Favourite Climbing Music: Anything electronic and generally with a beat
Favourite Crag Food?: Smoked Almands
How did you first get into climbing?: A school trip to Undercover Rock
How long have you been climbing?: 14yrs
What is your proudest achievement in climbing?: Climbing the FA of Helvetia 8c at Shipwreck Cove, The Gower
What's your favorite problem/route you've ever done?: Theres so many, Conquistador 8a+ has to be one of them in Chironico, Switzerland and obviously Helvetia
Why was it so good?: Conquistador is all about compression which is one of my favourite styles. And Helvetia because its the first thing I have really put any time in to.
Where is your favourite crag- In UK?: It would be a toss up between LPT, Shipwreck or Kilnsey
Outside UK?: Rocklands
If you could give someone one piece of advice for climbing, what would it be?: For those that haven’t tried it before, Do it! you won’t regret it.
Who or what inspires you, and where do you get your motivation from?: The youth of today inspire me, seeing how hard they work. I’m motivated by all styles of rock climbing, I love the fact that if you get slightly board of doing one thing or you fancy doing something else (say bouldering) you can move on to Sport, trad, comps etc. What ever floats your boat really.
If you hadn't got into climbing, what do you think you'd be doing instead?: No idea
How long have you been route setting?: 10yrs or so
What do you love most about setting?: Being creative and watching people trying to work out what you have set
Where do you get your inspiration for route setting?: I guess a lot of my inspiration comes from comps but also moves you have done outside. and my heroes would be the likes Jackie Godoff, Ian Vickers & Andy Long
What's coming up next for you?: Off to Font next weekend then I guess I better start getting back on the training for next years comp season
Who are your sponsors?: Evolv, Prana and Metolius
Ben West on “Helvetia” F8c