Saturday, 12 November 2011

Claire hits the bouldering meca, Fontainebleau

Three weeks in bouldering heaven, Fontainebleau!

In September, I was fortunate enough to spend three weeks bouldering in Fontainebleau, France. It was my first time in Europe and my first time in Font. Before heading off, I was warned to prepare myself for mantles and slopers, and, yes, these warnings were correct. My first couple of days, I spent slapping around on the top of boulders, not trusting my feet and wondering how on earth I was to hold on to these so called holds and actually top out. After a couple of desperate ascents, I finally got the hang of trusting the tiny slippery footholds and getting my mantle on! I bouldered nearly every day of the first week and probably climbed the most problems I have ever climbed in such a short period of time. I loved moving around the forests, finding cool problems and hopping on them. I loved not having a guide book or knowing what the grades of the problems were and just enjoying the problems for what they were rather then the grade. And that is what Font is all about!

My mornings would start with a fresh croissant from the local bakery, followed by a day filled with bouldering and fresh baguettes. Evenings were spent in our Gite enjoying cheese and biscuits, drinks and yahtzee. One can’t complain about that.

I was fortunate enough to spend some of my time bouldering in Font with Finnish boulderer, Nalle. It was amazing to learn from him, and he was able to give us some local beta. Font is definitely on the cards for another trip, I can’t wait to get back there! I am back in Sydney now and planning my next trip… not sure where it will be yet!

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