lundi 5 novembre 2012

Visting my familly in Alsace...

I could check that my nephews still have a lot of energy, that Alsace is a pretty region (especially in autumn), and that my sister is still a fantastic cook! :p

And about the side effects:
- pumpkin fondue (note the string&foil technique to avoid a catastrophe)
- first snow
- 2.5kgs of cepes!
- a cat (for Donn)
- some pretty lights on the local vineyards

PS: photos are from my brother in law, Sebastien, who is enjoying is new camera!


mercredi 17 octobre 2012

Boulet in Catalunya!

Bruno (master Boulet) came for a few days around Barcelona to get a taste of the local climbing before the skiing season starts. The weather being average at the beginning, we took the drive south to the world famous Siurana... Bruno could enjoy the great limestone climbing, the scenery, and the food!

After 2 days there, the weather improved up north, and we went to my beloved Montserrat, where we joined Joan for a multipitch climb in the pretty "pinnacles" sector, and Bruno could discover the local crazy conglomerate, and its difficult style of climbing... I love this place, its so beautiful!!!

But sorry, no boulettes to talk about, despite the presence of myself and Bruno... I guess this makes a boring post?

PS: the pics are from Bruno!

dimanche 13 mai 2012

New member, and a nice keys story!

This Saturday, we went one more time to Montserrat with Carles to climb a multipitch route. It was way too warm to do our initial plan which in full sun, and we climbed plan A', a nice and easy 300m route in the shade on great rock. The route is called Easy Rider.

The climb went really well. At the top of the pinnacle, the wind was strong, and I was putting back my running shoes with great care not too loose anything... Carles was more confident, and left his backpack unattached... He was thinking that he had heavy things in it so the wind can't blow it away: a pair of climbing shoes, and his car keys... and anyway, he has been in Montserrat with much more wind, and nothing has never happened...

While we were setting up the abseil, we saw his backpack rolling away from us, and jump a 200m cliff... with the cars keys in it! The infamous "car keys" joke was not a joke this time.


Romaric: oh shit, do you have the car keys?
Carles: no, they got blew away by the wind...
R. : hmm, that's a bit annoying... so I guess we have to go and search for them!
C. : venga, vamos!


So we abseiled and got off the pinnacle. After messing around a bit (i.e. bush bashing, using New Zealand terminology), we found the gully where the bag would have gone... Well, it wasn't an easy gully to go down, and the terrain was quite rough around... We went up and down on some part of the gully, just getting lost in some bluffs every time... It was really warm, and we started to be quite dehydrated by then... eventually, we resigned to go down to the car. Of course, Carles didn't left it open, not like last time...

Luckily, we found some very friendly climbers who gave us a ride to the closest town. Carles could call the spanish auto club, after drinking a couple of litters of water. They opened the car so we could get our belongings (flat keys, mobile phones...)... Overall, we were back to Barcelona by midnight...

Welcome to Carles to the B4 club! (for the details, it grades B4-iomlc)

lundi 7 mai 2012

"It doesn't have to be fun to be fun"

Well, as the title suggests, a good story for Travis... Saturday, after twisting my ankle the day before (see previous post), we went climbing with Carles to Montserrat. He suggested a classic route which he hasn't done before... This should have rung a bell as he has been climbing for years in the region, and had climbed most of the classics... Moreover, taking the excuse he is just coming back to climbing after a bad accident, he offered me the honor to climb the crux pitch... Thank for that, bro!

I discovered later that this crux pitch was not only a classic, but a mythic and terrifying pitch! It is basically a 35m off-width crack (OW in the guidebook, this should have rung an other bell...), which is way too wide to protect, but not large enough to climb easily as in a chimney... There were 3 bolts, the first one 15m above the belay station... an other bell which I didn't listened to, as Carles was telling me that this part is supposed to be the easiest... my arse!

I went inside the crack, my helmet jamming in it perfectly... Not very practical to look after feet holds... My running shoes, which were attached to my harness, were doing exactly the same job... "Ostia puta"... After struggling like hell, I made my way to the first bolt... Relax... Next bolt in 10 meters... I choose then to climb out of the crack, which is more exposed but more comfortable in a sense... 6 meters later, I tell Carles that I am scared... 4 meters to go to the next bolt... The climbing is still sustained... Bolt, relax... Now, it gets a bit easier, and better equipped (logic???), next bolt at 5m, followed by the belay station... I am glad to be up there, and the tension goes down.

Conclusion: that was how I made my way up one of the most terrifying pitch in Montserrat... Definitely a fantastic climb, but I still don't know if I liked or not... Afterwards, I checked on the internet about it, and many people had epics in this pitch, someones talking about nightmares and stuff...


B2-i, i for idiot as Oliver would say...

Last Friday, we went (with Jonatan) to a small boulder contest at a local gym. It was a lot of fun. At the end, just after we gave back our list of sent problems, Jonatan suggested to try a dyno problem, just to get out the last energy remaining in my arms... I was indeed tired from 3 hours of bouldering, but while saying "its probably a bad idea", I grabbed the starting hold, jumped... And twisted my right ankle on the landing... Idiot! ;o)

PS: nothing bad, just a bit painful... you can see in the following post that I managed some climbing the next day

vendredi 30 mars 2012

Scooter accident

Here is my nephew after a scooter crash... My sister told me that he took advantage of it for getting the favors of some young ladies at his school... Clever boy!

dimanche 1 janvier 2012

New year's eve menu...

"Mediterranean shooters" - Accompanied by some Champagne
"Duck foie gras with spicy dates marmalade" - Late harvest Gewurztraminer wine from Alsace
"Pasta with a double (fresh and smoked) salmon sauce" - Riesling from Alsace
"Fresh fruits with a lime puree"
"Lemon tart"

Yummy yummy yummy!

Macarons for dummies...

Dummy, this is how my sister is calling me... Still don't know why :D ... Anyway, thanks to her, I made my first macarons, and 2 different kinds: lime, and olive-oil/vanilla... Yummy!