Monday, August 20, 2007

We've got a winner, or Portalet, second time

Second time on Portalet in two months - that's a lot. And not for anything - Etat de Choc was the big objective for this short w-end. This incredible line, followed from bottom up by the Remy brothers, disturbs the eye by its overhanging perspective and beauty of the setting.

This is the view up the wall, with first 6a pitch before the actual start of the wall - and than the route follows cracks/chimneys to the right of the prominent pillar. Who said there were no chimneys or no cracks worth of that name in Europe? 'Escalade d'anthologie' the guidebook says - and it is truly a stunning experience.

The biggest surprise is the 5th pitch - it is hard to put any grade on it - some of the most claustrophobic climbing ever

with an overhanging offwidth to finish with pleasure on a hanging belay 150m off the deck.

And finally after all the suffering and grunting, one of the best crack climbing pitches ever - here's Mark proudly going up the dream stone.

Yes, Portalet is worth coming back to over and over - to at least look at it for inspiration!


Michel said...

Oh, sweet sassy mallassy! That looks amazing, except for the squeeze chimney. My heart would be pounding so dramatically that I don't think my rib cage would get in there.

uasunflower said...

it's such a special feeling when you are stuck in this dark and unfriendly place, without being able to moove up or down, your butt,knees and elbows ripping off clothes and skin trying to lezard up, your brains going wild with images of death from suffocation, and in the same time seeing light, but not being able to get there!'s like experiencing being born all over again.

wanna climb?

Michel said...

Strangely, I don't remember being born anymore. :)
But, you've just described, I'm sure, many folks' worst fears about chimneys.
Personally, I want to get strong at off-widths. No joke.

uasunflower said...

that sounds like a challenge...the worst part about them is leading them...