If you as me like steep footwork with long runouts, this is a route to aim for! And it's not just a climb. It involves a 1 1/2h approach as well up some nice scenic trails via the most exellent place refuge ...!!
Starting from the ski area and road end of la Clusaz. Drive up to les Confines and take the trail to ref. Bombardellaz. The path continues behind/above le refuge and an other 40 min walking.
After this sign...
...Continue approx 20-30mts uphill and then there is a faith trail out leftwards. Follow this hard to see start trail around the hillside and up towards the peak.
The start of the climb goes over an often wet steep tricky part. There is actually 2 starts, but the nicest one is the one to the right. Higher up to the right there are a couple of one pitch routes!
As so often, as it is said, the start is wet, very wet! So either pull on the bolts or choose an other route, I go for the first option...
Pulling the first 2, up on the third and then I decide to take off uphill...lets see...,
The Firebird is said to be hard on the grade and up yes, it looks like the bolts are placed after the "take the shit" out of them device. On the easier pitches the bolts are pretty close but on the 6's there is only one way, climb it! And it's most enjoyable indeed. Very spacy climbing on good friction limestone.
As we, as to often, started up with an anti alpine start, I head up the first pitch at 14:30 something, could be a long day in the mountains. But the day is great, a little wind and no clouds, just the dust from the chalk bag. Time to relax and just climb.
An route le Montagne
There is no easy pitches to start with, actually the only 6a is a very short one at the end of the route and even that one has a bit of boulder problem grade, a bit higher than the grade set in most cases. But cussing the numbers!
Somewhere on the route there is just no point of thinking at the chance of going down, like falling. There is just a nice flow in the climbing. Very perfect and as said, enjoyable!
At some point I find my self stretched out, with my thumb at a cristal trying to pinch...something. Next thing I'm not holding on to anything, not even the crystal that just broke off.
But a nice blue water holds on to me so the cussing cristal didn't win after all! :-)
Me, the stone and the blue...
The route is a bit devided in two, as it felt. The first part...and the second part, 2 parts right!?
The first parts slabs and friction steps gets a bit more vertical but still a bit frictionista. Vertical friction.
I finally find myself at a nice, one of many, belay. Overlooking the next pitch, said to be a 6b, but looks just impassable...
Turns out to be passable but on a bit secret holds, just perfect, again! Like the last pitches that brings us up to the last belay just at a small tower. A bit of airy scramble and we can walk out on the ridge to start the walk down descent.
tres belle le deux
Thé descent isn't to complicated,but there is a bit of down scrambling over some exposed parts and then when it feels hopeless. There is an anchour! Make a 50m rappel and you are down.
Pinching the lime time
But, the weekend wasn't over just because of this...
Next thing was a shorter route on Maladières. A nice cliff above Cluse.
On which we the day before did a climb as well, the Qui s'y frotte s'y pique 6c+
A five pitch route that travel up the hill on the Eclipsè area. On most perfect rock with good bolts.
Anna on Qui s'y frotte s'y pique 6c+
To finally end this we after a bit of bushing and a lot from me at least Big Cussing Story, ended up and chalking the vertical on Amertume 6c.
Idyllic approach to les Maladières
This route is a bit of same as Eclipsé, same start but a harder 6c middle part and a bit of desperat 6b finish. Overall an other nice climb...
And what ever you do, don't miss a pain du chocolat at les Nomade in La Giettaz. Its a bomber!
Next one is...written in the stars
For la Mamule; 2x50m rope (for the last rappel, we use just a 6mm trail line), 12 QD, good shoes
For les Maladières; 2x50m rope (the routes are rappelled down and easiest to find anchour are at the Eclipse area, small yellow wood signs) 10QD
next one...?...is written in the stars!
Bonne chance avec le été et le pluie...À +