Monday, 18 February 2013

Justified Vagrancy

As I work in a school and have half term off I had ideas of going to Scotland. That was until someone mentioned Siurana and a Spanish bolt clipping holiday.

Ive only been on one sport climbing holiday before to Frankenjura and it had been an enjoyable and beneficial (I was rock fit on my return) so I took the jump and booked flights to Reus for a few bob.

I wasnt sure what to expect or what to do really. How warm will it be? Mileage vs. Redpointing? How much will this cost me? In the end though with it being pretty chilly the first few days and wanting to just climb lots after a mediocre winter of plastic pulling we got on with it and put in the mileage. Getting 41routes in over 6days (Fr5+ - Fr6c+; mostly Fr6a/6b) was pretty cool and made for a tired little boy at the end of the holiday.

Sleeping in lay-bys and under overhangs at the crag made our weight loss plan work out pretty well, losing over half a stone in the time we spent there. Although more could have been shed had it not been for the 6 euros for 28 can beers in the supermarket!! An abandoned building provided ample shelter from the continual winds for the early part of the holiday and made us feel like refugees - which I guess we were, climate refugees.

Flying home on the sat night I felt good and with a partner sorted for the sunday in the Wye, psyce was high. Well it was until I woke up at 6am on sunday wide awake. So using up my time sorting pictures, unpacking, making lunch, tidying kit and repacking for a days trad it was time to head off (not before dropping mike at the train station).

Warming up on a pleasant VS I got it in my head that this would be an easy day getting used to placing gear again and loosening the muscles. Alas it was not to come true. Dave had big ideas for me and suggested I lead both pitches of Tower Route (a route I had previously seconded). With this dispatched and me smiling at the top, I thought I was safe. One hardish route a day, thats about right surely. But after chatting to some other mates at the crag (There were other people at wintours for the first time since November!!) they suggested I get straight on White Feather, a steep 37m E3 the other end of North Wall. So after a tough start (definately stick a wire in the bottom, its much harder than it looks!! - NB: I didnt fall onto the wire but its proper grovelly) the route flowed past and with a handy pull using some new found Siurana strength I reached the top of another quality route that's on my S.Wales ticklist for the year.

Cheers to everyone that belayed me the last week (Sam, Mike, Dave, Random Aussie Guy) made it a quality week that I am definately going to reorganise for next Feb.... If i have any money. As in other news Ive booked flights to California and Argentina for an 18week crush-fest at the end of this year! Let the good times roll!

The Living-Dining-Kitchen Area

Siurana Sunset

Mike happy as ever to wake up at the walk-ins!!

Spanish weather followed me all the way to the Wye