Sunday, May 09, 2010
la BuscaBrega, Vermeil
The first time I came to Vermeil it has been a little bit less than two years ago, with Gabriel, another of the guys I meet at random on the internet when looking for climbing partners in a new place. I believe the plan was via larga, the Aranya, but finally we ended up sport climbing, and he showed me Cara Sur of the Mother Mountain. We walked the walk and did a couple of 5s and 6as to the left of San Agustin. Then he told me there was this awesome 6b, pretty hard but awesome, technical, dihedral climbing. I went for it, and onsighted the climb, the highlight of my day and probably week during those dark ages of my climbing career.
It was the time when I was starting to recover from my mountaineering adventures and painfully taking up the sharp end again. Coming of age, one might say - after the too quick beginning and end of an alpine career, I arrived - at least for some time. I arrived to the climbing paradise on this planet, the little province of Catalunya I continue enjoying in rain, snow, and mainly good weather. I started my recovery journey climbing long, epic, and fun routes with Cathy - and in the end of the circle have arrived back to where it all started, the sport climbing, the measured head, the technique and the flow.
Vermeil has become second home by now, two years later, especially after numerous thoughts about moving to El Bruc. After working the Vianant for some time and having trouble reading the crux move there, I decided to change the objective to the near-by BuscaBrega, another route with some fame for being hard and contrived. Although some people say it is 7b+, such as Luichi and his guidebook, others such as MacKay (aka Bou Major) and Fernando have it as a 7c if one does not touch the crack for rest or the last moves out of the slab. I did not find it exceptionally hard, but challenging enough to try it out this week-end. Finding the easiest solutions to most of the moves was not too difficult, and the last dynamic moves left the good taste in my mouth of being able to do them pretty well after the harder dynamic reach at the Rush. BuscaBrega did cost me much less effort than la Rush (a total 4 tries on lead, and 3 topropes), and appeared definitely easier than the (wet) Vianant for these rainy days of spring we are made to enjoy.
Saturday was a long, not very productive day. As my friends stayed on the right trying various routes there, I chatted with some, belayed others, even met the famous boulder-master, Ferran from Rotpunkt&Holds. Finally making up my mind, I moved to the Busca area, where Alex already had the route equipped and ready. I dared the first lead, working slowly my head back into leading after some days spent toproping various projects. There were three of us, so it was one of the fortunate times for me to get pictures taken of my attempts at the route. The head switched on, and I managed to go for it as one should, hard and flowing.
After falling off at the dynamic crux at the exit of the slab (just after the clip at the picture above) twice, I left the draws and went home for the needed rest. The route went first thing in the morning, Sunday. It was another strange day, nevertheless the celebration was had with the classic pies de porc in El Bruc. Thanks for the pictures to the tireless Remi, and the belays to the vigilant Pau!!
Amapollas are back, my lead head is back on track, the spring is here for sure despite the weather that is tricking us to say otherwise, and climbing is as good as ever. A muerte, and listening to el diable, la princesa & yo (more here).