Destination Guide: Saint Leger, Franceby Jack Geldard - UKC Chief Editor Apr/2012
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The wonderful limestone valley of Saint Leger is home to hundreds of quality sport routes. Many of the routes are in the F7-8 grade range, but there are a smattering of worthwhile easier routes too. However to make the most of a multi-day trip at this venue, being able to operate in the mid F7 grades is probably best. For teams climbing at F6a-c other venues in this region are better - Orpierre for example.
The climbing is mainly on the sunny south facing side of the river, where there are many sectors, however for the hotter days there is the shady side of the valley which is home to the less extensive but still good Face Nord, which stays out of the sun all day.
The climbing style is varied on pockets, crimps and tufas, with a mixture of short and long routes, mainly overhanging, sometimes extremely so.
The approach is short and flat; a pleasant stroll up the valley by the side of the river. The base of the crag is generally flat and friendly and the valley has no road, making it quiet and tranquil.
Saint Léger is in many ways a classic example of French sport climbing. Amazing rock, well bolted routes, beautiful scenery, excellent camping and restaurants nearby, and usually perfect weather. Did I mention the wine?
When do I go?
Where do I fly to?
Where do I stay?
Campsites abound in this area, and can be found around the nearby towns of Vaison-la-Romanie or Mollans-sur-Ouveze .The village of Buis les Baronnies is 15km away and is a popular spot. More info is on the Buis les Baronnies website.
NOTE: Van camping is not tolerated at the parking for the crag.
There is a small gite a few km from the crag, halfway down the small approach lane, but the closest accommodation to the crag itself is the bergerie-des-salamandres gite which is situated at the crag parking.
What about eating out?
Where can I buy gear and food?
What else is there apart from the climbing?
Which guidebook do I need?
France : Haute Provence (Dec 2009)
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