Solveig is an accomplished young sport climber and international competition climber. Her dedication to climbing has seen her on the podium in national competitions and led her to amass a notable outdoor ticklist, including redpoint ascents up to 8c/+ and flashes up to 8b+.
Solveig, who is from Steißlingen in southern Germany, was introduced to climbing by her father when she was six. She started competing when she was nine years old and at 11 started training with a professional coach in northeast Switzerland. 2014 marked a milestone in her progression as one of her best competition years, where she won the German Lead Cup and made the finals at the European Youth Cup in Imst. The following year she qualified for the German National Team.
In 2016 she qualified for the World Youth Championship in Guangzhou and placed 16th.
“This was a new experience for me,” says Solveig, “flying to another continent for a competition with the national youth team, to a country with a different culture where I had never been before.”
After finishing school in 2016 Solveig continued to compete, making the podium in various national competitions, but she also began to focus more on outdoor climbing and travelled to various countries, mainly in Europe.
“In the beginning I did not have high expectations because it was rather new to me, especially redpoint projecting at my limit,” says Solveig. “I was failing left and right on 8a+. A year later I came back a lot stronger and started to move on the rock with a lot more confidence and to try harder routes.”
Her growing confidence became evident as she broke into elite grades in 2018, onsighting routes up to 8a+ and climbing her first 8b+, Kale Borroka, in Siurana.
“I’ve learned a lot from projecting this route,” says Solveig. “How to climb more efficiently, how to deal with frustration (I fell in the upper crux over and over), how to persevere, how to push my limits and believe in myself. After putting a lot of effort in this route, the feeling of getting to anchor was just incredible. I even had some tears in my eyes while I was lowering down. I am really proud of this accomplishment.”
Solveig ran with the buzz of this success and within a year had claimed eight more routes of this grade.
In March 2019 a trip to the Red River Gorge in the USA was extremely successful, with Solveig ticking routes like Ultra Perm (5.13d/8b), God’s Own Stone (5.14a/8b+), Golden Boy (5.13b/8a) and a flashing both Omaha Beach (5.14a/8b+) and Kaleidoscope (5.13c/8a+).
“These are grades I would have never dreamt of climbing two years ago,” admits Solveig. “I developed a passion to challenge myself.”
In May 2019 Solveig climbed her first 8c, Nobody is Perfect, in Vorarlberg, Austria and quickly followed this with Battle Cat (8c/+) in the Frankenjura.
In the summer of 2019, Solveig, who is predominantly a sport climber, started dabbling in trad climbing on a trip to Bohuslan, Sweden and Lofoten, Norway. In the future she wants to learn more trad, focusing on harder single pitches.
“I climb for so many different reasons,” says Solveig, when asked about her motivations for climbing. “Climbing has brought me so much in life. It can simply be about movement, but it is also a wonderful vehicle for traveling, for finding a welcoming community, and experiencing new cultures.”
“I love the feeling of progression,” she continues, “how something, which can seem once upon a time so extreme as a goal, can be rendered achievable.”
Besides climbing, Solveig did gymnastics for seven years and found it has helped a lot for climbing and still really enjoys it. Traveling has also become a big part of her life: “I’m really interested in seeing different countries and experiencing new cultures and cuisines. I love going to new climbing destinations and learning to climb different styles of rock.”