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Thursday, August 18, 2011

Different Days



What a mix of fortunes and experiences trying something much above your limit brings. Three days ago was not a good day on L'Ami. The start felt desperate, I was struggling even more on the middle jump/press, and the I was finding the top crux desperate! Then I watched an Italian bloke destroy it, almost flashing it on his first go. Inspiring to say the least and a very evident reminder of the potential gains I can get from trying something like this route. The less psychological part was another Italian, who had just split his finger and was giving up on this route, turning around to describe that he lives 3-4 hours drive away and he will come back in a few weeks when he feels like it - he has loads of other sport climbing in his vicinity of a different style to keep him occupied....jealous!

Two days ago was a different story completely. Yes, I still fell off it a few times, but in the middle of the first crux which involves some ridiculously tiny holds, my feet came off. And I was still on, managing to re-place feet before then falling off. It's interesting, just realizing that I can hang the holds with my feet off is a massive psychological boost. The middle crux jump/press (I haven't decided whether it's really a jump or not) was also feeling much easier and linkable from the ground, and the upper crux is now o.k again after I found out I'd been using one of the holds completely wrong - I'm actually impressed I could even do it before, after finding out the easier method! As another Italian described, now it's just a case of "being lucky", I just might make some big links on it if the sun shines the right way, tie my shoelaces in the correct order, and sell my soul to the climbing gods at the right time. For your amusement, here's the old footage I have that I referenced on the this post.

Other than that, I finally got around to doing Cent Patates 7b+ on the left side of the Biographie wall. Possibly one of the best routes at Ceuse, a really fun onsight to finish off the day as a warm-down. I also had a play on Les Colonettes. It's a cool looking tufa right up the middle of the Biographie wall. As it turns out, the reports I'd heard were relatively accurate. The first 4 meters of it is chipped so that you can access the tufa, and unfortunately chipped in a not very fun manner. A weird frustrating move that is completely different to the rest of the the route which is really unfortunate as the rest of the line is so much fun. The tufa is really fun to climb, if over a little quickly, and I'm now just wishing I had a longer rope so that I could try the mega-extension. Even before I had to cut the end off the rope, at 70 meters it isn't long enough..........

Two days left so off to enjoy the sun. happy climbing all!