lundi 14 mars 2011

Gréolières revival

As you've probably all figured it out by now, we've been a small group to have lately rediscover this cliff, and see the huge potential that it still have to offer!

The first routes up there were bolted more than 25 years ago, mainly in the perfect verdon like slabs. The firsts routes in the eighth degree (Cornichon explosif 8a, Fragment d'une utopie 8a...) are also from that time, and still in the rather vertical parts. Note that JP Bouvier was wise enough to leave the overhanging start of Fragment d'une utopie untouched. He just bolted the upper part, then abseiled from the top to climb it!
After that, a second generation of harder routes were bolted, mainly by the famous Axel Franco... And well let's say it out loud, it was a massacre! His routes (El sangliero fiero 8b+/c, Uros Kolo 8a+, Manga bidu 8c, Taras vimbodi 8c...) were totally chipped, with glued holds and all. Hopefully, even if El sangliero fiero (perhaps the less worst one) is still there, the other ones don't exist anymore!

General view of THE cliff : Gréolières! But this is juste the tip of the iceberg...
So now place to the new stuffs!!!! To make it short, it started with Totem 8a from F Oddo, Free camping is not a crime 8b+/c, Zumozol 8c, Rablam 8a/+ from C Lo Piccolo, and Ura nagé 8a+ from E Pelletier.  Right after that, Aurel followed with his now classical Les plaies mobiles 8a, sent another time recently by Guillaume Cadas alias Chico Delavega. Chico is now close to link the other recent classic, which was another time redpointed by Blaise "le discret"... my Dépucelage mineral 8b. But this was just the beginning!
There are now around fifteen new routes that have been bolted up there... most of them still waiting for a first ascent! The reason is that most of them will certainly be in the upper range of the eighth degree!!! I'm currently editing an updated guide that I will soon put online here. Meanwhile, here are a few pics of my latest route L'embonpoint de travail 8b/+, and of Cédric last project. 

Me, right before sending one of my latest bolted route :  L'embonpoint de travail, proposed grade : 8b/+.

The name of my new route came from the fact that on the top, bolts are placed were the jugs are, to ease clipping during the redpoint ascent... Well as usual... Except that there is only one jug in the middle of the whole upper wall! So let's say that there is a bit of air between the bolts!!! Since I do love speaking about specific route and sharing betas, I chose to leave it like that, free from any unnecessary working bolts, and to keep myself available to anybody who want to try it without taking ten times the huge final flies before figuring out the sequence...
Cédric project is nothing more than a lifting of the old Manga bidu. The artificial holds have been removed, and the line starts now slightly more on the right than where it started before. I've just tried it once, and it's fucking awesome... and hard! Movements dictated by nature are nothing compared to the "left then right" ones of chipped routes! The perfect demonstration that it's best to think at least twice before doing a massacre!

Cedric working on his latest project up there... No name yet, but a grade on top of the eighth degree for sure!

Talking about revival... the latest route in Gréolières is... Fragment d'une utopie! Yes the 25 years old route now have a start from the "ground"! This start adds a powerful overhanging section to reach the rest where the route was originally starting. The whole route will for sure became another classic...

Blaise bolting the start of the historical testpiece Fragment d'une utopie
Take a look at the kairn that make it possible!
In brief... Tons of new, hard, powerful and natural projects on perfect rock! What else to be motivated as never!!!

4 commentaires:

  1. T'as trouvé un chouette nom pour ton dernier chef d'oeuvre finalement!

  2. Elle a changé 46 fois de nom dans ma tête, mais aucun ne me plaisait vraiment... Je suis assez content d'en avoir finalement trouvé un pas trop mal! Pas evident de trouver des noms sympas... Mais vu que ça fait partie intégrante du caractère de la voie, autant se creuser un peu non?

  3. La Mouche a quand même collé pour créer la Comète ;-)

  4. La mouche était loin d'avoir une éthique puritaine... Et des prises collées, il en a laissé un sacré paquet sur son parcours! Ya qu'a voir ces voies dures au saussois...
    Dans la comète, les deux prises collées ont été virées, ce qui donne un sévère pas de bloc, mais ça passe nickel. La cotation tourne surement plus autour du 8c que du 8b maintenant... Mes paires risquent d'ailleurs de rester longtemps dedans vu que je viens de m'auto priver de grimpe pour une bonne poignée de mois!