sobota, 21. november 2015

Old projects

When I was looking for the best line in the Big cave of Osp and after trying to bolt it I got lost. Normally I observed the lines from the ground, than from the rope and than I start working from the top and finish by making beginning from the bottoms up. It sounds simple, but in this cave it's not. With so many big stalactites it's super easy to get lost and soon you don't know anymore where you are and where you wanna go.
Getting ready for the crux (and next 40 meters of the route)
So a couple of years ago I bolted the upper part of the route between Bitka and Active and I knew it's amazing. Only big stalactites hanging out from the roof. Nothing hard but extremely fun to climb. Problem was just to find the perfect beginning. It could be the extension of Baram Baram 8a+ but the part between the end of first pitch and new route was not so nice. Too breaky and I would have to clean a lot just to connect these few meters. Next idea was to go up from Revolucija. Too may edges and the rope drag at the end would be unbearable. OK, lets try from Halupca. Same problem and also this route is hard enough by it self. Next line was Troja. This was the one. Perfect difficulties at the start, comfortable rest and than a crux. I just had to extend some quickdraws and the new line was ready. Finally after 5 years I found the beginning of the amazing end of the route.
Spiderman style rest
Everyone knows Troja so I don't wanna describe it. At the top you have a comfortable no hand rest (Batman style) so you can get ready for the crux. It's a crazy boulder that you could normally see only on world cup competitions and some climbers would say "you can't find this in real rock" :). You are all stretched with feet on one side and with hands you are just leaning on the blank wall on the other side looking down with your back facing to the roof. In this position you traverse to the right to one krimper and than you have to swing out and do a move or two before you can put your feet back to the wall. And now you are ready for the crux. Long moves, feet above head, knee bar, heel hooks, toe hooks, some sniping and you finally get to the tufa where you can rest a bit. Now there it just around 10 more meters of 360° tufa climbing to the second anchor. And now finally the ending part of the route I was hoping I will climb one day. This was fun. Big stalactites you can sit on, lay on them, take a break, drink a coffee or just enjoy the view. It's like sitting at home on your couch so I decided to name the route Couch Surfing. Yes, it's only 7c the upper part alone but until second chain is a hard 8c and all together you have about 60 meters of a route to climb so I think it deserves to have another + next to the grade 8c.
The higher you go, the bigger the stalactites get

Now I really don't have any more projects in the cave so I will have to move somewhere. HC, Pandora or maybe in Spain. We will see but definitely I'll visit this amazing cave of Osp again and enjoy this big long monster routes.

The cave is full so it's time to find new home

sreda, 11. november 2015

Secret Project 8c+

Some time ago I was trying one old route in the cave of Osp and was wondering if it would be a good idea to change those old rusted bolts and make a route out of it. After some tries I saw how cool the moves are and all of them were almost possible. I decided to put in some nice new bolts and make it safe for trying. Soon I figured out all the beta, but connecting all the moves with those small and sharp holds was harder. Normally I could do two or maybe three tries a day and than I cut my skin on fingers and couldn't try it anymore.
Secret Project is not a project anymore but the name stays the same :)

To avoid cutting my skin again yesterday I decided to put all my energy in my first try. With a lot of fight and screaming I could climb to the top without falling. Project finished, and on the way down I put my quickdraws on another project I bolted long time ago but totally forgot about it. Troja to the top is my next awesome project in Osp and I think it can be climbed fast :)
Soon I will have to find a new "home" since here I'm almost finished

četrtek, 15. oktober 2015

When everything goes wrong

I woke up in a nice sunny morning in Drašnice. I was feeling good and strong after (forced) rest day. Skin was back on my fingers so I skipped morning swimming in the sea and went directly to my project.
View from Apolo apartments
I was hoping the crux will look like this
2 days ago it was dry and possible
Just hanging around on 1st belay
From the parking I could see it's more wet than rocks on the bottom of the sea. Anyway I went up optimistically. But closer to the wall I got, the worst it looked.
My route is the black line on the left. Hopes of doing the route that day were gone. Washed away.
Since I was already there I decided to try it like salmon and swim up the tufas. Impossible to get to the first belay so I just took out the quickdraws and went back home.
Good memories of the 2nd pitch
Dry and clean. Perfect for enjoying the day
I like tufas
I wanted to start the car, but the battery was dead. Oh well. With the help of some friendly local we started the car and after 500 meters I found out there was a bee in my shirt and .... f***... u*** p***
Unfortunately it's not always sunny and windy in Dalmatia
We stayed one more night in Drašnice, woke up in another nice sunny day, took a swim and drove back home to Slovenia. 
On the way back home we stopped to see the new canyon of Čikole
Just another canyon with good quality rock everywhere and just waiting to be bolted
OK, back to Slovenia. Welcome home :)

torek, 06. oktober 2015

Summer in Spain

After two weeks of traveling, climbing, surviving thunderstorms, driving and bunch of other staff we finally came through the tunnel and on the other side we saw Spain.
What is on the other side of the tunnel? - Adventure
In Bielsa, 8b+ On Sight.
Bielsa was our first stop in Spain. Perfect "warmup" place with big overhangs, tufas and long routes everywhere. I already got into a bit better shape so I could successfully onsight two 8b's and one 8b+. Good start but my plan was to onsight also something harder :). Another place close to Bielsa is Devotas where we were enjoying super nice easier routes mostly graded from 6a to 7c.
First thin to do when you get somewhere
Approach to Bielsa
First view of the sector
What to do next?
Devotas for easier but interesting routes
We continued our way to Basque country where we stopped in Etxauri. For 5 minutes, just to see the place and put it to out winter itinerary. Hope for climbing will be as awesome as it looks on the sun. Now it was just too hot and we continued to another place called Lezaia. I can't say much about this place since I didn't use "LifeStraw" and we got water poisoning. Not fun at all and also artificial holds in all the routes didn't help to put us in a good mood. Anyway, from far it looks nice and it's in the shade almost all day.
Extauri, for next trip, for winter.

Lezeia looks cool
But you can just stay in a gym. Is the same :)

In Oñati we were climbing most of the time in Korea sector where you can find many nice and long lines Climbing is similar to Bohinjska Bela or La Balme with grey rock and many long sharp tufas. Here they added also some artificial holds so on sighting was a little easier. I did Simonides 8b+ os, but for famous Honky Tonky the conditions were just not good enough :).
Sector with hot routes
FT in Bilbao
My favorite climbing spot on the trip was La Hoya in Egiño. First big cave  La Leze you can see from the highway and you are crazy if you don't wanna climb there. Yes, it's a little bit dusty but the routes are amazing. Without a topo I can't say what I was climbing but the hardest around 80m long (maybe less but when you climb it feels long) was definitely the 9a Dani Andrada did. I was happy just to get to the top on A0 and also getting down was not as easy as one might think. To climb this route I would need much more than two days so we went to find something else. We found in on the other side of the mountain after 3 hours of walking on rain (normal approach 45-60 minutes). Long walk but it's worth it. La Hoya is a climbing paradise with long and hard routes. There is one easy 6c BS route all the way on the right but anything else is ... fun to climb. Without a topo I had no idea what I was doing but I knew I wanna get back as soon as possible.
Le Leze cave is awesome

Pajaro electonico
Best place in the world with many long hard and harder routes
Routes in La Hoya were long but we wanted to climb something even longer. And Picos de Europa are prefect place for this. 3 hour approach and we had a nice view on foggy sky. No, we didn't see anything. So we looked on the pictures from guide book and say "that's a nice wall" :). Next day one easy route. Sky cleared for 5 minutes so we could see the wall and we could find the route. Also on the top was just fog everywhere so we went down. Nothing to see there :(. Third day we woke up in a nice sunny day and from the tent I saw the route I wanna do, It was Murciana 78. This time the weather was perfect and from the top we could enjoy the view all the way to Atlantic ocean. There was one more  route I wanted to try there before I went back down to the crazy world. It was route Orbayu 8c (8c+) which looked just amazing. First there are three overhanging 8a pitches that Anja liked the most (she hates overhangs and traverses so this was perfect for training :)). Than you have super comfortable hole/ledge where you can have a BBQ and from here on it gets hard. On my first try I was feeling strong and I came quite high but than I broke a small krimper. Joder. On 2nd attempt I fell even lower and it's hard to do 2 tries in one day in this kind of route. So I will have to get back there and finish what I started, but this will have to stay for my next trip. When we came down from the route Klemzy and Tanja were waiting for us with fresh supplies of beer so we could easier walk back down to the valley. Thanks again for helping us carry all the stuff down. More of this mountain you can read on Anjas blog.
Yuhu, we can see the wall
Enjoying view from the top
Way down should to be here somewhere
This is how it looks when the fog goes away
Base camp
1st pitch of Orbayu
Sunny day can make life much easier
Now I feel better

From here we continued our way to Teverga. It's just another place with too many rocks, cool routes, big potential and friendly people. Every day we were climbing in different sector and we still didn't visit all of them. For me the best one was Planeta X and Placas de Sol where I did second ascent of 45m vertical monster The Flintstones 8b+. I have no idea why others don't like to climb this route. 
Free parking/camping in Teverga
Big wall above Tanatorio
We had no idea what we were climbing. It's more fun that way
No, nothing here, just one stupid rock
Ha Ha, we woke up in a sunny day but others in Teverga...
Easy approach
Planeta X

We stopped one more time in Poo de Cabrales where I saw a route in a topo. No bolts in it so I tried it on trad. Impossible and too dangerous so I added a few bolts and I hope nobody will get angry at me. It turned out to be nice and hard 7c and I called it Mi Cabra es tu Cabra.
Best sector of Po de Cabrales
I don't use my Bosch just to make tiramisu :)
In Rumenes it was raining again. Everything was wet and also close to where we were sleeping at night we heard a huge land slide. Everything was wet (still) so we decided to leave and we found a new spot Ramales where it's possible to climb in rain. Wall here is so big that rain never gets through so it never gets wet. Also because of this there will never be tufas on this wall so it makes it perfect for changing a style. Orange wall with small holds and technical cruxes will throw you off as soon as you loose a bit of concentration. Luckily I like flying so I was not too disappointed when I fell on last hard move of 8c.
Good escape from rainy wearther

For rest day the best place is Cabo Ogonyo. Morning bigwall climbing on perfect tower above the see and swimming in the ocean in afternoon. It's also good to by fish for dinner here since they are much better and cheaper than in Slovenia.
Perfect holiday place with nice routes
FT in Mundaka
You can see Cabo Ogono on the right
Getting ready for La Hoya with big Tuna fish

I still wanted to on sight something hard. So I convince Anja to go back to La Hoya where routes are perfect for this. Now there were some people there so I could finally figure out what I was climbing last time. 7c i tried for warm up was 8b, 8a I did was also 8b and 8a+ they also said its possible 8b+ to the second chain and third pitch where I fell supposed to be 9a. Aha, so this is why I was so destroyed next day. They recommended me also a nice 7c for warm up. No problem but it was fucking hard. When I was hanging on the rope I told them it's hard for 7c and he replayed: "Porque no es 7c, es 9a". Yep, I went to the wrong route, the 7c was more to the right. But it was a good warm-up :). In 8b+ they recommended I didn't see some holds in the crux so I fell. But it was a good try and I was ready to on sight 8c. This time my approach was a bit different than normal and I took some time to observe route from the ground. There was not much to see so I went for it. First section was much easier than expected. Good rest but I didn't need it and I continued up. Few hard moves and another rest. From here on it looked much harder so I was relaxing. Few meters higher I missed some holds again and I was too much on the right to continue a murte so I decided to downclimb back to the rest (usually big mistake but this time it payed off). Anja was even making fun of me: "Klemen, you have to go up, not down, ha ha ha". But I knew what I was doing. I went back up and do the crux. On the limit, but I was on a better holds again. Now I could see the chain. But there was still a blank wall between me and a tree from where you clip it. I was getting more and more pumped so I decided to jump and hope for the best. With the help of a big scream I grabbed the hidden hold and I finished the route. Wiipiii 8c on sight and now I'm ready for 8c+. No. I was out of energy so I packed my staff and go back to the car.
Bongo X 8c
Around the crux
Not just back to the car, we started to drive back home. We stopped in one more area by the road, than in Abella de Conca where it's always nice to spent some time and in Perles we finished with our Summer climbing trip to Spain.
No sun cream, no problem.
In total I onsighted 5 8b's, 48b+'s and for the finish Bongo X 8c. I know it's not totally  as I wanted by my plan to onsight 9a I have for the last 10-15 years so a year up or down is not a problem :). I'm not in a hurry, I still plan to climb hard for a while :)
Top 10 beaches in the world
Sometimes it also has water

The Book of the trip which helped us a lot to organize and find many amazing places was Donde Escalar from Desnivel and I recommend to have it always in your car. You never know when you have to change your plans and find a new place and this book is full of ideas.
Cueva Devoyu
with very good  light you see more.
Thanks everyone for sharing good times in Spain. See you soon 
Zdej pa cajt za dam it.