I'm a woman

I'm a woman
Photos copyright Laurence Gouault
No reproduction on other media without the photographer's permission.

Wednesday, 21 August 2013

A long climb with a short daughter, by Stevie Haston

My daughter Kate is visiting, and she wanted to do a multi pitch kind climb, so we headed over to the Pic de Orlu.  We have long routes there up to 1000 meters of abordable granite in a forested mountain region, it's cute, and doesn't feel too macho, like a lotta alpine stuff. 

There are meadows by the river and very good bouldering even in the summer heat thanks to the strong breeze going up and down the valley.

Anyway we wondered up and as my middle daughter is a good slab climber being Welsh, we decided to fore sake our plan and go for Durandalle as its the most open and has the cleanest slabs. A feature of much of the climbing is it can look a bit vegetated even though it takes clean granit, but Durandalle looks the cleanest, so it was Durandalle for us.

 Pillar Sud looks a bit broken and easy and is 1000 meters to the top, it doesn't look super good but you could do a lot worse in life than poodle your way up this meandering arete, in fact I'll recommend it. Mainly easy with bits of grade 5 it tops out on a pointy summit with a good view; there you go.

 Typical Durandalle, easy angled rough textured slabs which are always interesting. No faffing 15 draws, two 55 meter ropes, a helmet or two and water to taste. It's rigged for abbing from up to pitch 16.

In the sun you get hot, your feet swell and the continuous grade 6 slabs get tricky! Rap down in bare feet if you don't want to do the last exposed ridge an decent across a moorland and thru a forest. The up and over option is best, but we were sunburnt and plan to go back on a cool or cold day!