torek, 14. julij 2015

Summer climbing on 2600m and 8b+ OS

In the summer is usually hard to climb in ordinary climbing areas so we had to find some other places where we cold enjoy rock climbing without struggling with the heat. So last weekend we went climbing some multipitch routes in Val Bruna in Italy. First we had to walk for a few hours but than we were rewarded with nice fresh air and cool long routes. We stayed up there sleeping under the boulder for three days and than unfortunately we had to walk back down to the valley.
Back down to the valey

Another week of incredible heat was a good motivation for another walk in Italian mountains. We went to Avosantis where you have a lake and amazing solid grey limestone routes. Most of them are slaby but there are also some vertical and slightly overhanging technical routes with small holds and interesting betas waiting to be found. The wall gets in the shade after 4 p.m. so there is plenty of time to chill and wait for perfect conditions.
Perfect summer destination
On internet we found another climbing area in Lienzer Dolomiten in Austria. Roter Turm is a crag on 2600m above see with some harder routes from 7c and all the way until 9a. From the picture in the topo I thought they made a mistake since it doesn't look so good but the grades convinced me to find out some more about this area. Someone said "It's Shit. Don't go there". Luckily I decided to take 5 hour walk and feel the place with my own fingers.
Wall is better for climbing than it looks

In the end it was only 3 hours of walking and for the reward we found a perfect summer crag where you can climb all day even on the sun. Slightly overhanging routes from 30-50 meters long. All of them are nicely bolted and most of them also have all the quickdraws in. By the side we also found some easier BS routes in really good rock.
Enjoying the view

Every route I tried there was amazing and one after another was better. The last one I did was Traumfänger 50m 8b+. Not the hardest or the longest route I did on sight, but definitely it's on the highest altitude.
There ar routes for everyone

After successful climbing day we decided to go to the top of the mountain where Barques did his altitude record on 2702m. Probably he also did 1st dog ascent of Roter Turm.
On the top of Roten Turm 2702m

Way down was another story. I will not explain it, I will just say we got lost and luckily we had rope and helmets with us.
Easy part of the descent

ponedeljek, 29. junij 2015

Albania Climbing Festival

Albania was on my wish list of climbing destinations for a long time and the climbing festival was the perfect excuse to go there. 
Most active climber in Albania :)
First day I visited Bovilla, area 20 minutes from Tirana. You park on a lake and first sectors start already at the parking. Many of them are still without routes but when they will be bolted it will be a cool area with a nice view. Anyway I still had enough routes and it was a great climbing day.
Empty boltles walls
Just one of many walls
Tufas everywhere
View from the inside
Second stop was Brar. Few kilometers of driving on dirt road brings you to another canyon where you can see many rocks and possibilities for climbing. But you have to continue driving and finally you see big and long overhanging wall with a lot of tufas just above the road. Park here and for warm up climb up the protection fence to reach the first routes. No, there are no routes there yet. Why? If you continue walking up you can find even better lines already bolted and there is space for many more to be done. Definitely the place where I would like to return with my drill and bolt something new.
Warming up
There is also easier way up but why not here?
Last area on the festival was at Gjipe beach. This is the place where every climber should go for holiday. Nice sandy beaches with routes 5 meters from the sea (just enough not to get wet when you belay). There is also a canyon with walls facing east and west so you can basically climb all day and deeper you go, better it looks. Since there is not enough routes there yet, I made 2 new ones and next time I'll make some more of them.
Perfect touristic place
If somehow it get's too hot over the day there is also option of Deep Water Bouldering on a nice smooth sloppy rock but unfortunately there is not much easier staff. Anyway it's still fun to try to get out of water and...
Canyon with a pit stop before you enter
In the end I had a great experience and I enjoyed climbing there with local climbers, it was very fun and definitely I'll go back as soon as possible. 
Next time... I'll add some more routes

četrtek, 18. junij 2015

Pecka Climbing Festival

Last year we wanted to go to Bosnia and Herzegovina for the Pecka climbing festival but our plans fell into the water. Since than we couldn't find time to visit this place and see what Bosnian rocks has to offer. This year looked the same. On the weekend of the festival it was raining again so luckily they decided to postponed it for the next weekend and ordered some sun from the sky spirits.
Making pancakes for the breakfast
South of Banja Luka you enter the canyon where you can see rocks everywhere. Good quality limestone with a big potential and by the road we saw some bolts. Perfect resting place with routes on a parking. You can't see this everywhere.
Just one of many cool looking rocks
Next day we continued our way to Pecka where the festival took place. In the middle of nowhere we park a car but we couldn't see any rocks. 100 meters of walking through a forest and a view opens on a cool sectors with many routes up to 30m high. The routes were on the sun so we had to wait until evening to start climbing.
The overhanging sector "Marshal"

Routes are nicely bolted and mostly with small pockets and solid rock. Soon we came to the overhanging sector where the hardest routes of Pecka were hiding. After doing two of them I decided to make another one for Justin Case I don't run out of them. This one is hard and now I can return here without any fear of doing all the routes fast. In the following days I was trying also many other routes there and I must say I liked almost all of them.
I like my job
The festival was one of a kind with a lot of climbers and we climbed a lot. In the evenings we had big fire and after we were making Banjaluški čevapčiči and for the dessert Griled bana with chocolate. The nights were made interesting with "Forest film festival" where they screened some movies and everyone had a great time.
Klemen & Klemen in action

In the end I was happy I went there and found a new climbing spot with friendly people where I will definitely come back soon.
Grilled banana with chocolate

sreda, 03. junij 2015

Chulilla, Abella & Ardege

In end of April I went to a small trip in Spain. I spent two weeks in Chulilla where I was first trying to onsight some harder routes and than I bolted a new 70m line in sector Balcon. It's amazing route and I hope many climbers will try it all the way to the top.
Somewhere in Chulilla
Anty Gravity, 8b+, 70 meters high
1st pitch is 8a+
2nd is 8b

For the rest day we went on a search for some new crags in Titaguas. Approach was not the easiest but we had a lot of fun finding new amazing rocks where we will bolt next time.
New hot spot in Spain
Amazing rocks everywhere
In Chulilla was getting too hot but I still managed to climb there and make one more route in the canyon. Heat and mosquitoes didn't bother Anja since she did her first 7c in the worst possible conditions. 
For me it was too hot to climb but Anja still did her first 7c
New route with a little different approach 
Perfect qualiti of rock from opening bottoms up
Many new possibilities
Getting food is sometimes not so easy
It was time to move to Abella de la Conca. One week of bolting and I managed to make a nice summer sector where you can hide from the crazy heat.
One week of work for bolting, for climbing all the routes maybe a bit more
Last week of my trip I went to France. On a EXPLOS film festival in Ax les Thermes where I was presenting my movie Bala Bala! Ardege is an amazing place with many different kind of climbing areas, caves and cool people. I don't know why I didn't visit this place before but I'm sure I'll be back soon. (here you can find the topos of most of the places)
Welcome to Ax
Sector with harder routes
Just before the fall
Cave has cool long overhanging, pumpy routes
Dodaj napis

ponedeljek, 23. marec 2015

Cogne ICE

Every year we try to spend some time ice climbing and this time we choose for our destination Val di Cogne. But first we decided to “warm up” in Maltatal. Not bouldering, even though conditions were perfect, we just went testing our new ice axes. Waking up early in the morning is necessary if you want to be the first in your climb but even though we were sleeping under the ice fall we were not the first to enter in it. There was too many things falling down so we just went to another one. Good choice and we had a great time in it.
"Warming up" in Maltatal
Three days sleeping in the car without heating was enough and we were ready to go to Cogne. I went there for the first time and I was surprised how cool it looked. Granite boulders everywhere and again we didn't have a crash pad with us. Why???

Snow instead if crash pad

There is also around 150 ice falls there but some are too far away in the mountains, others were not done enough or there was just too many people in them. Anyway we had a great week of climbing in ice and for the rest days I went bouldering.

Weather was getting warmer and every day we had less ice to choose from. Plan B was dry tooling in small rock just outside village Cogne. Fun, but still I think I don’t like this so much.

Dry tooling for the first time

Higher up the valley ice was still good so we decided to do something with a bit longer approach. Idea was to try "Repretence" but there was already too many people in front of us. Not cool when you wake up super early, walk for two hours and then you are not able to climb what you want. Luckily there was another ice fall just next to it and nobody was climbing it. It supposed to be easier but I don’t agree with this. "Monday Money" was much harder than anything else we have done in Cogne.   Another great ice we climbed was "Patri". Good ice, not to cold, not too hot and with some sunny parts in the middle. We liked it so much we had to do the last pitch one more time on top rope just for fun.
"Monday Money" was free

Top rope for training
Or just to enjoy 
The last day we were idealess what else we can do so I decided to try some more of dry tooling. I went for the route "Jedi Master" M11 and I had better time in it that I thought I will. Strange, also this can be pumpy fun. It’s a strange feeling climbing in rock with ice axes but here I think is no other way. Still when I reached the ice I was feeling much better. Unfortunately I couldn't convince anyone to follow me up there so I had to finish climbing after the hard pitch. There is still one more easier pitch to do at the top but this will have to stay for the next time.
Different than climbing but I got pumped even more
The ice part is better with ice axes

No I don't like this :)
While I was finishing climbing there was a big avalanche on an ice fall just next to us. Luckily two climbers just came out of it and another two were above it so nobody got hurt. After seeing this we packed our staff and go back home. Too scary for us and this was probably a sign we have to go back to rock climbing.
Looks fun but sounds scary...??
On the top of "Monday Money"