Friday, February 24, 2012

A little of everything (una mica de tot)

A friend on the rocks

Strange ironic winter this is...Just when the cold finally arrived for a couple of weeks, bringing the un-hoped-for good friction to the project, i hurt my shoulder.  Just when i recover from the shoulder and get psyched for the project again, my skin gives way to bloody meat.  Unhelpful body, temperatures, and humidity going over the roof force me to digest the patience and humility pill, while contemplating (defeat) the possibility of climbing the project next year.  Oh well, maybe March will be colder, and maybe i will miraculously get stronger, or maybe like all the other mortals i will have to call it quits this time and look for another project for the spring time.  Not that there are few options.


In the meantime, between injuries and skin destruction, my journey of self-discovery continues, between empty spaces and full-blown inspiration, sunshine and icicles of short days and unending nights.  On the good side, i have started to enjoy running much more, as a relaxant rather than an obligation.  Having finally bought a map of my mountain, i have been exploring new places close to home.

Mysteries of the Collbato caves

Despite most of the time spent concentrated on the project (and my thesis), I managed to get on a couple of good lines outside it, such as the awesome Panxa del Bou in Desdentegada - a very highly recommended 7b+, one of the few overhanging lines in Montserrat.  The first part is very Margalef-like, and the surprise comes at the top, where a couple of heel hooks save the day when arriving at the anchor.  Or the classic Ultravox, another 7b+ in Vermell, much more of a pure Montserrat style.  This route used to be an eliminator project when a climbing competition was held once upon a time in Vermell.  Hard bouldery start leads to more relaxed, looong slab climbing past a roof, to the far-away anchor.  I am still not sure why the route has been prolonged all that way up, one has the time to count all the sheep and think about the history of the universe before reaching the top of this one - although the pure difficulty is concentrated at the bottom three bolts.  Finally, during a couple of cold days in Siurana, i sampled awesome 7as in el Pati and Coral Nou, and also tried the moves on yet another 7b+, Prado del Rei, that was less inspiring than i thought, with a boulder move at the bottom, and a crimpy escape 2/3s up.

Working Panxa del Bou, Desdentegada

Joan Maria on Prado del Rei, el Pati

Let's hope spring will be more relenting in terms of reaching the chains and finding new energy and inspiration for finishing old projects and starting new ones.  Let the game continue. In the meantime, thanks for belaying, sharing, and dealing with my good and bad humor days to Pedro, Andreu, Javi, Juan, Laia, Joan Maria, Robert, Albert, Patricia, Pau, and all other (virtual) friends.

 A random view on the run around my  mountain

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