“In 2022, one of my climbing projects took me to my grandfather's homeland - Iceland. An adventure in this incredible landscape combined with great company, good vibes and moody weather: cold temperatures, strong winds and lots of rain - all in all challenging climbing conditions. Whenever I come here, I'm super motivated and amazed by what I see - even when the weather is really bad! In Iceland, you make plans for the day, but in the end it’s the weather that decides what you do." Anyway, climbing in the rain is actually part of a real Icelandic adventure. Svana and her team visited the land of ice and fire to experience its rocks and walls for bouldering, sport and trad climbing. One of the young Frenchwoman's goal was to open up a new line in the fascinating basalt columns in Fallastakkanöf, in the South East. The route, divided into three pitches, was to be climbed in trad style: a major challenge for Svana, who had little previous experience of climbing without bolts. "I lead the first pitch, without being sure where to go nor what to do. It was one of the most frightening experiences I've had to date. Once at the top, the joy of the successful first ascent and the overwhelming view of the Atlantic prevailed.”

Epic TV Film captured Svana's adventure on camera in the fantastic film "WIDE HORIZONS":

Thanks to her grandfather, Svana has both French and Icelandic citizenships. However, she had never made real use of it before. That was to change in August 2022, when she had this trip in Iceland. On site, the young Frenchwoman got to talk to the Icelandic national coach.

"There’s always been a strong will of the country to take part in international competitions. Though, they didn’t have any female climber with enough experience and level to do so. Our idea was that I should take part in the World Cups season in 2023 and represent Iceland on the international climbing scene. This would help Iceland to develop and better promote the sport and, at the same time, allow me to realize my childhood dream of taking part in World Cups. My goal was also to try and inspire future generations, because there are some kids who are very motivated and already taking part in European youth comps. In a way, I wanted to show them: if I can do it, you can do it too."

In addition to the World Cups, Svana learned that Iceland had a chance to qualify for the 2024 Olympic Games in Paris, through one of the so-called Universality Places. The ambitious climber could not turn down this great challenge. What followed was an extremely busy summer of 2023, which catapulted her onto the international competition scene after 7 years of only climbing on rock. The goal of the season was to become the first Universality athlete in the combined world ranking. The hard work paid off! Svana qualified for the Olympic Qualifying Series. These competitions will take place in Shanghai and Budapest in May and June 2024 and will qualify a total of 12 athletes for the Olympic Games. The 32-years-old bundle of energy is now training all the harder in order to catch up with the international level and try to get her ticket to the Olympics.

We wish Svana every success for the 2024 competitions year and keep our fingers crossed for the Olympic qualification! Allez Svana!