Saturday, June 07, 2014

New summer in Tarn

This summer has been nicely initiated in Tarn, an old French climbing site that we are rediscovering in all its flying colors and scary run-outs. The climbing here is very good, the quality of the routes being (much) higher then average, the rock resembles Siurana, with less sharp pockets sometimes reminding one of sandstone and Fontainebleau. The routes are very high quality and - usually very long. It is not unusual to see several parties with 100m ropes as 40 meters is considered rather "short" for a route here. Surprisingly enough, hard routes are also closely located to easier ones, and it is one of the rare places to provide high-quality 8as and 6as some meters apart.

Another unending 8a on the Tennessee wall

Que fas aqui and the Tennessee walls are two of the major sectors, offering around 100 meters of sustained vertical to overhanging climbing on immaculate limestone. The other special feature of Tarn to remember is the bolting - it is known to be rather spaced, having between 4 to 6 meters between bolts being a usual site. It is also to be expected to have a crux reaching the anchor, usually well removed from the last bolt. It is "safe" in the sense that the start of the routes is usually densely bolted, and the bolts are farthest on the top. This does not make it easier for the scared chickens like myself. I have psyched myself up to trying to onsight up to 6c+, while projecting 7c... But hopefully with some work, matters can be improved.

Feerie pour une autre fois, a long 8a in the middle of Que Fas Aqui sector

Among the birds, same route, Que Fas Aqui sector

Despite the lurking fears of gravity and falling, the place is spectacular enough to keep us coming back over and over, wishing for more.

Some recommended routes (careful, personal opinion only):

Nor desir sector:
Djebly la mouche (best 6c in Tarn!)

De que fas aqui sector:
La puerta del sol (6c+ 1st pitch, hard crux, but awesome climbing)
Une Marie pour deux (40m 7a+, incredible)
Les culottes de ma grand-mère (6a)
Fuck the curve (2nd pitch 20m, 7a, nice)
La femme grigri (7b)
Dimanche vagabond (6b+, nice sendbag as the start seemed much harder than 6b)
Nulle part ailleurs (6a)
20 000 lieux dans les airs (6b+, careful, longer than 40m)
Arachnide (7c)

Figues au cul sector:
What the fuck today (hard 7b, but very good, long way between bolts)
Rose paille et jaune bonbon (incredible 7a+ for 54 meters, better than its neighbors on the right, still far between bolts)

Amphiteatre sector:
Veuve noire (7b)
Jour de doye (7a)
GR15 (6c+, incredible but run-out)
La napouse (7c)

Tennessee sector:
Les ailes du desir (7b+, hard, classic!)
Une colonne derriere les verrous (7b 2nd pitch, great jamming!)
Le grand pelerinage (7c, for vertical/slab masters)
Pyromania (7c+ to the top, classic)

Trezor du Zebre:
Jeux de plage (6a, incredible!)

Planete Causse
Mon dide (7b, hard crux especially if you can't hold open-handed pinches)
Omar m'a tuer (7b, great)
Planete causse (7a+, really??? great jugs)

To be continued.

Pictures by Jonas

No comments: