Saturday, 28 April 2012

Swiss Gneiss first week

I’m settling well into Switzerland, sharing our flat with various friends and visiting the boulders. The first week of my trip was spent in Chrionico which was unfortunately a little warm for hard stuff, and rainy too, but still good fun. I was speaking in Lecco also which was a great evening, if a little stressful with my words being translated sentence by sentence. I think it worked ok for the 500+ audience who turned out!
I spent a couple of sessions trying From the Dirt Grows the Flowers 8C which was excellent. I got the moves but it was far too warm in the sun for the famously slopey top out. I’m sure I’ll come back to this one sometime. Rounded topouts are a huge weakness of mine which although I don’t enjoy them so much I’d like to improve at them. In between trying this I went across the river and made a quick ascent of Conquistador Direct 8B/+ which was recently put up and the video of it looked excellent. I made my own video above.
It was just as good as it looked although I did have a grumble to myself about the heat making in hard to squeeze the pinches. It’s really made me realise how lucky we are in Scotland with frequent good conditions thanks to the almost permanent wind! When I was climbing Conquistador Direct it was about 14 degrees and humid after the rain but completely still. It’s often 14-16 degrees in the highland glens right through the summer, but with a good wind it’s much easier to stick to the holds. The rain, however, does present a problem…occasionally.
Now we have moved over to Magic Wood which despite the sudden 20 degree increase in temperature, conditions are still surprisingly good and getting some excited about recent links.


  1. Good job on climbing and filming. I just discovered your blog the other day. I'm really enjoying it. Ordered your book "9 out of 10" yesterday can't wait to read it. Keep up the great work.