Fed up of waiting for conditions I decided to just have fun. For the last week the sun has been shining and the sky blue here in Fontainebleau but it hasn’t been especially cold. I had got bored of waiting for perfect conditions and so decided to just climb a lot! Also the one climb I really wanted to do this week, Delire Onirique had fully shut me down again, not sure why but it just feels too hard. I will have to get better at rock climbing and try it next time!
After six days of climbing my skin and body decided it was time for a rest day but looking back I was pleased with the decision. Although I hadn’t climbed anything hard I had really enjoyed climbing with friends and getting lots done. The jewel in the crown was Toutes Peines Confondues, a tall imposing crack line leading to a slopey top out. On first glance it looks like a line of jugs leading to a scary top, how wrong! They are jugs but the feet are very bad and in awkward positions. We had tried it briefly in 27° heat earlier in the trip. On arrival at the bloc the air was cooler and hopes were high. After removing 4 hibernating bees from the crucial pocket, we set to it!
First and second go I got up to the slopey top but the beta we had figured out felt too stretched. Not sure what to try I rested for longer as I was feeling pumped. Pulling back on I still wasn’t sure what would work at the top. Up the jugs on tenuous feet, arriving at the pocket I adjusted, it felt better than before, left hand up to a slope and then again to a better one. Here our original beta slapped again for a good hold with the left but I was feeling stretched. Swapping my feet, I brought my right hand up to another sloper and kicked a left heel on; this allowed me to move my left hand to a good hold, a bunched mantel and into the sun!! What an amazing problem, definitely one of my favourites in the forest and seldom climbed too. It does amaze me how many quality problems seem to get neglected, even in such a well visited area as Cuisinere.
I have managed to tick a few other classics during the week including Hotline, contender for best 7c in the forest, De la Terre et la Lune (7c+), Angle Parfait, the hardest most technical 7b I have ever done and the climb that has taken me the longest out of any in Fontainebleau!! Rumour has it that the ‘perfect angle’ still eludes the great Jacky Godoffe?! Probably just a rumour!! Other ticks include Hibernatus Gauche, 8a although I thought 7c was more appropriate, Oasis (7b), Ecaille de Lune (7b+/c) and Sol Invictus 7c+.
After 7 hours drive we have arrived at our apartment in Ludiano, Switzerland. This will be my home for the next 6 weeks. Bring on some cold days on the granite.