Adidas Basecamp to China Rockstars / by Mayan Smith-Gobat

I am extremely happy to have had the opportunity to participate in the first (and hopefully not the last) ever Adidas Outdoor athlete meeting... Focused on the climbers, Basecamp, was held in the heart of the Frankenjura - One of the birthplaces for Sport climbing and Wolfgang Güllichs stomping ground. Visiting a stunning cave on our first evening at Basecamp.

True to their slogan.... Adidas "was all in" and created an amazing event for their athletes. For three days we all stayed in an ancient Castle (now converted into a very nice hotel) built on top of a limestone cliff, which is now a small, but very nice climbing area.  It was an informative, fun trip and a great chance to get to know the Adidas Outdoor family a little better.

A formal meeting in the weapons room!

After Basecamp Ben and I had 10 days of time to climb... We had all sorts of plans, but were thwarted by the horrendously wet spring that Europe had been having. After much debate, we decided to bite the bullet and go where we had the best chances of getting some sun - South France! So, one and a half days later, after an epic drive, we found ourselves at St. Leger. A beautiful crag located above a small river and surrounded by ancient French villages, vineyards and olive groves. It was definitely far from summer weather, we were still wearing down jackets most days, but it was great to have some time to just climb, swim in the freezing cold river, visit markets and simply enjoy France.

Ben, lost in a market in South France

Beautiful little fishing village on the Mediterranean

However, the week few by and soon I found myself back at the airport - Headed for China, for the Adidas Rocstars comp in Shanghai! It was a hectic week, including two over 20 hour flights, hundreds of signatures, countless photos and many translated interviews... I will never know whether what I said was what they heard or vise versa. It is always interesting being in China.

The semi final of the first Adidas Rocstars event in China

Adidas put on an amazing outdoor event in the middle of the most popular and busy shopping street in Shanghai. It was incredible to see climbing (a very small sport in China) exposed to the general public like this, and welcomed with such a positive attitude by everyone. I was there with Dean Potter and Thomas Huber, and once again the Chinese looked after us like royalty. We had a personal guide "Marco" who accompanied us everywhere and made sure we had everything we might possibly need. In the mornings when we were not at the event he showed us the highlights of Shanghai, and took us to the tastiest restaurants.

Axel, Thomas, Dean and I in Shanghai

It was great to have a few days with Axel, Dean and Thomas. Thanks Adidas for inviting me to come to this event!