/ First trip to Font - recommendations?
So a couple of us are heading to font for the first time in a couple of months. We're only going for a cheeky long weekend, but i'm wondering, what would people recommend for first-timers there? After reading a bunch of posts on here and elsewhere online there's no doubt we'll get reasonably spanked, but are there problems people would recommend for a first trip? I generally prefer doing circuits rather than laying siege to a tricky problem (especially given its a short trip).
Any advice welcome!
Would recommend Canche Aux Merciers as your first area. It has a good range of problems at the lower grades which is great to acclimatising yourself to Font rock.
After that Cul de Chien (with the Snoopy boulder) is great climbing. Elephant again is another must-do as the problems are higher and also very "pockety".
Thanks; just checked them out - pretty much met my expectations that starting with lower grades would be the best way to get ones "font eye" in. They look good though, can't wait for the trip.
It's an incredible place. Even non-boulderers can't help falling in love with the area :-). Very jealous. :-)
The famous boulder in the sand see of Cul de Chien has become very dangerous, due to the formation of a crack at the pedestal. The erosion commission asks to definitely avoid to climb on this boulder since the risks of topple-over are real.
Awww what a shame. I would hope that they have some sort of notice posted there - not everyone goes on to bleau.com.
Oh really? That is really unfortunate! Will they end up doing any stabilisation work do you think, or they'll just let nature take its course?
Despite this though, its still a good area to checkout you reckon? I mean, its isolated problem to that one boulder or is the whole area suffering subsidence?
Maybe avoid Bas Cuvier unless your a big fan of really pollished rock. Apremont (sp) was brilliant for the long weekend I was there for though.
Definitely still go. The Snoopy boulder is the landmark boulder but there's an awful lot of lovely stuff there.
In a couple of months, the above spots (as nice as they are) will probably be too hot. I'd recommend stuff around Franchard or bois rond for shadier multi level circuits. Apremont Bizon would be another possibility. It's 20° already in the forest.
Canche aux Mercier has tree cover. But you have a point about the other two.
Ah yes, it will be hot for sure. Are the other spots that are exposed unbearable or just not the kind of thing you'd spend all day doing?
Depends what you enjoy, you can always find something in the shade. Even on the hottest days you'll find people at Cul de chien climbing without a t-shirt. Canche aux mercier is one of the quickest drying places in the forest although it does have some cover.
Also if you're further down south Petit bois is worth a look.
You do the continental thing and start early, snooze through lunch and then pick up again at tea time :-)
Which was lovely to climb at except I picked up Lyme disease from there so worth paying particular attention to exposed flesh.
Oh and just keep an eye out for caterpillars - they sting like buggery!
If it were me I'd avoid the Canche - constant drone from the motorway kind of detracts from the experience and the problems are not particularly inspiring. 95.2 is a MUST for the first time visitor though it will be very hot when you go. Franchard Isatis is also great and pleasantly shady.
Thanks for reply peterp; have heard good things about 95.2 as well, so its nice to get 2nd opinions :-) How's the sun exposure situation there?
Just FYI there has been some repair work on the crack in the Cul de Chein boulder but you still shouldn't climb on it. I'm not sure why they can't just stick a sign up on the entrance to the area. It would be such a shame if anything happened to it.
Oh surprising; I thought it would have been quardended off or something if its out of bounds. That's kind of silly. Good to know these things though - will be sure not to climb on it. With that in mind though, and the danger associated with it, whats stopping people climbing it? Appreciate its a massive area but you'd have thought they'd police it or something for preservation purposes.
It's one boulder in the middle of a big expanse of sand. Because it's such a landmark it'd probably look a bit shit with a barrier around it stopping people climbing.
> Oh and just keep an eye out for caterpillars - they sting like buggery!
Hi, Thank you to the links.
You will find on my blog lots of informations about Font' and the protection of this magic forest. Please, when you go at Font, Respect it. ;0) USE LESS CHALK, Brush it, ...
Have special look to about the Bilboquet:
Look on the left, you will find lots of links to camping or gites resevations, ...
Rule number 1. don't annoy Greg LF! :)
haha awesome. a full blown lacky is a bit beyond my means, but I'm sure my friend will keep the fridge full of beer: win some, loose some :-D
Thanks for the pointers guys - overall looks like 95.2 will be a good area to checkout as well as Cul de Chien (and try some harder stuff if we're not spanked by the grading!)
95.2 climbs much better than Cul du chien, either way you'll end up with a good tan. Rocher du sabots is a better bet from the same car park as cul du chien and a bit more cover too. The blue circuit is one of the best (although polished) in the forest. The red is brutal.
It seems you have enough suggestions for a first visit! One for another is Mont Aiguille near Fontainebleau town. There are several circuits, yellow, orange and blue IIRC and they seem to be a bit less polished than some places, except the start of the yellow and orange.
As for the choice of circuit, the best is to have a few ideas in mind and then decide according to the weather - if it's hot, and it can get really hot in Summer, go for a spot under trees, if it's damp but clearing up then an exposed area - like the Cul de Chien - dries quicker.
Concerning the "Bilboquet" dog's head boulder, it has been out of bounds for climbing for a long time as it's a landmark, but a delicate one. It's no great loss for climbing though as it's only small and surrounded by about the biggest climbing area in the forest! Putting a fence round it would spoil the appearance of the place, and the thousands of photos - a good rendez-vous spot though and nice and sandy for children.
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