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Le Blond, la Brute, et le Manouche, 8c+ and Video

Le Blond, la Brute, et le Manouche, 8c+ and Video
December 13, 2011 - 

France, Italy, France, Italy, Greece, Italy, France, Austria, France, Italy, Austria, England, Austria, Italy, Switzerland, France, Spain, Mexico, France - My last two months...

This time of year is always hectic, it seems like the majority of my work and non climbing commitments all come at the same time, which is a good thing as it leaves a lot of the year free, but can sometimes be frustrating when climbing has to be put on the back burner, and you feel yourself growing fat from all the eating out and sitting on your ass in the car/plane.


However, decent rest can be just as important as decent training, and despite feeling lazy and unfit, your body may actually be happy for the R&R and excess calories, rewarding you now and again with little surprises on the occasional visits to the cliff.

Les Joncasses...

One of these surprises came last week at my local crag of Les Joncasses, a short, steep cliff of perfect compact limestone just 25min from our apartment in Grabels.  I was back from a few days of traveling and meetings, with one afternoon free before we had to leave again for the final round of the Lead world cup in Spain - not exactly a perfect scenario for climbing hard projects.  Still, it would be nice to get outside on some real rock, and good to re-familiarize myself with my projects, ready for more serious attempts next year.

The Pinch...

The route Le Blond, la Brute, et le Manouche was bolted last year by three friends of mine, Adrien (le blond), Nico (la brute) and Anto (le manouche) but was always too intense.  The route is very bouldery, with the difficulties beginning at the 2nd clip and continuing until the junction with "Progression" (an 8c to the left).  The moves themselves are very difficult, and clipping even more so, with the intensity building and building until the crux of the route arrives at strange horizontal collonet in a roof.  From here, a few powerful moves lead to a precarious, run-out clip, from an opposing sloper and heel hook.  Fluff the clip and the floor will be uncomfortably close, clip it and you are almost home... just the crux of Progression still to do!

At first try of the day I could not climb the individual moves, which was a bit of shock considering I had been attempting to redpoint on my previous visit just a few months before.  The holds felt too small, the moves felt awkward, but I accepted this was just the result of my crazy busy last few weeks.

The Crux Collo...

After a little rest I decided to make a try from the floor...

To read more, and see the video, head over to JPClimbing


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