Sunday, 5 February 2012

Europe 2012 Update 3

The Red House, Brione
Molonke 7c

 Looking out over snow capped  mountains from our plush apartment in Claro, only minutes from Cresciano, it is hard to imagine a more beautiful, serene or picturesque landscape. The Swiss have pretty much got it all under control. The place is spotless, the water crystal clear, everything is meticulously organised... Oh and outrageously expensive. Good on them I say, this place is untold. The bouldering is superb too, just as an aside.
We have been here for a week now, each day offering slightly better conditions than the last. It hasn't been over 5 degrees and the friction is incredible. We have climbed at Chironico most days, but also had a day at Brione which is higher up in the mountains and also happens to be one of the most amazing places I have ever climbed. My finger is just about 100% now, so hopefully I will be able to bear down a little more over the last few days of climbing. Sam, Lu and I have done loads of volume, but I haven't really been able to grip anything quite the way I would like to with tape on my middle finger...

Sam made an impressive last go psyche ascent of the aptly though boringly titled arete with the pocket problem, which is indeed an arete, that also contains a pocket. It goes at 8a, but is pretty long and goey. With any luck I'll do it tomorrow, but we shall see. We both did possibly the world's greatest 7c in Brione, called Malonke. A classic Fred problem, so it must be good. I managed to do Fake Pamplemoose 8a, which is essentially a three move power piece. So good... If only the world had more of these, I'd be a very happy man. There are just so many hard problems to do here. The rock seems to lend itself to relentless hard moves. At every crag there are problems of 8a and above. It's like paradise. I'm pretty sure this place is going to be locked in for a re-visit in the very near future. Well, that's pretty much it for now, off to do some serious chilling, as it's a rest day.
Fake Pamplemoose 8a

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