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Showing posts from June, 2012

Finale Ligure

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As I mentioned in the end of my last post I'm currently in Finale Ligure on the North-West Italian coast. I had heard from friends that the climbing here was good and it was kind of on route from Dolomites/Arco to Ceuse. The guidebook for the area (Andrea Gallo 2007 Italian with German and English text) is a real tomb, it's got over 2000 routes in it!
Finalborgo the old part of Finale town is a beautiful historic old walled Italian town complete with narrow pedestrianised cobbled streets, a castle and of course fantastic pizza, coffee and gelateria (ice cream)! I can recommend the Castello pizzeria, Bar Central for ice cream and Sbuccia cafe for coffee, smoothie and fast free wifi. The new part of the town Finale Marina has got beaches and the usual seaside antics: difficult parking and sun burnt holiday goer's.

Almost all the crags are nestled up in the densely wooded and wildly vegetated hills above the town, finding the crag and the correct sector can take a bit of …

Dolomites

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I've just come to the end of a week's climbing trip in the Dolomites. It was my first ever trip to the region. Even though I had seen plenty of photos of the famous Tre Cime towers, gazing up at the imposing north faces was very impressive, and quite intimidating!

The drive over from Chamonix was 'interesting', following the SatNav on the 'avoid-tolls' setting through the Swiss alps it suddenly announced “turn left and take the ferry” half-way up a mountain pass! There was no ferry, what the SatNav was referring to was the Valais to Bernese Oberland to thecar transporter through the mountain! I got in line, paid 22 CHF (18EUR) and drove the van onto an open sided train, this was no tourist affair just a quick and functional service. A bit like the channel tunnel but much less refined, sticking my head out through the van window into the open tunnel while the train was speeding along was quite exciting! 


After a morning of swimming and climbing in Interlaken we …

Gorge du Tarn

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I've just returned from a week of sunny sport climbing in Gorge du Tarn. It was a great week, it felt like everything came together: good company, warm weather and climbing fitness.
I didn't have much knowledge of Gorge du Tarn other than seeing a few photos. After a longer than planned and rather hot journey it was amazing to arrive in Gorge du Tarn just as the sun was setting. The Gorge is a super picturesque location, striking limestone towers protrude out of lush woodland. The 'main' road down through the gorge is a work of art, single track in places it weaves it's way through carved out tunnels in the limestone walls beside the river Tarn.

Looking at the guidebook I was stunned by how little of the potential climbing has been developed, it seems that only the most acceptable (roadside) crags have been developed. I'm not sure what the current local situation is but it would seem that the areas has massive potential for further development.

We camped next…

Living, Working and playing in the Alps: Chamonix

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Driving up the valley late last night; Bonneville, Cluses, Sallanches, Servos.... nearly there, driving on the now familiar wrong right side of the road past familiar roundabouts, trying to carry speed in my under-powered van up the raised duel-carriage way, it's pitch black but Glacier du Bossons is visible high-up on the right reflecting the moon light. Returning from a weeks climbing in Gorge du Tarn, looking forward to getting 'home' to Chamonix.

For the past month and a half Trystan and I have been living and working out of a chalet in Chamonix. Luckily given a good WiFi connection and coffee making facilities we can carry on with much of our work as usual.



It's been an enjoyable, and actually very productive time! Obviously we didn't just come to Chamonix to work, the usual mix of work and play has been in full force.

When we arrived on the 8th May we just about caught the last day of winter lifts squeezing in a days snowboarding on surprisingly good snow up…