/ "Nice" routes in the Verdon around 6b

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Jon Stewart - on 20 Sep 2016
Going to the Verdon next month, never been before. I've heard people say that it's best to avoid everything below 6c, as it's all nightmare sandbags - but surely this can't be true?

Anyone got recommendations for routes or areas that are reasonably easy to find; fairly long (a good few pitches at least); and quality, fun climbing (not slithering up polished chimneys with no gear, etc); round about the E2/3 equivalent, however that translates to the version of the french system used there (a fairly stiff, bold version?)?

Or tips in general for having a good time in the Gorges with a bit of adventure (not going sport climbing!), but without abject terror/nights spent freezing in harnesses, etc?
dave657 on 20 Sep 2016
In reply to Jon Stewart:
Can't really offer any recommendations I'm afraid, only been once about 6 years ago. But with regards sand bags. They seemed to be when climbing a single pitch route that happens to be the last pitch of a much harder multi pitch route.

I did a bunch of the classic 10 pitch 5+/6a routes. They were all great.

Finally, don't always believe the guide book if it says a route is fully bolted...

Although I also stuck to the bolted stuff, so I'm being even less helpful!
Post edited at 13:02
JJL - on 20 Sep 2016
In reply to Jon Stewart:

Ula

Demande

Would be the two ultra classic long routes in the low 6s
Jon Stewart - on 20 Sep 2016
In reply to JJL:

Isn't la demande a load of horrible polished chimneys?
GrahamD - on 20 Sep 2016
In reply to Jon Stewart:

> Isn't la demande a load of horrible polished chimneys?

Not from what I remember of it. There is loads of climbing before the chimney system and climbing the chimney system is basically bridgeing not thrutching. The chimney system (for us) were a welcome escape from the heat.

I also don't remember feeling sandbagged and I almost certainly have been climbing 6a+ or below when I visited. What I would say is that the bolts on longer pitches were more widely spaced than I was used to.
John2 - on 20 Sep 2016
In reply to Jon Stewart:

RÍve de Fer - four pitches of quality 6b climbing in a sensational position.
james.slater - on 20 Sep 2016
In reply to Jon Stewart:

Les Deux Doigts dans le Nez (6a+)
Enjoyed this very much, it is all bolted but still had a good adventure on it. Easy to follow on the gold bolts but great climbing.

Afin que nul ne Meure (6a+)
Also a bolted route, and pretty easy for the most part but could easily be lead on trad gear if you were keen.

Not saying these are the best routes, just two that I quite enjoyed.

walts4 - on 20 Sep 2016
Jon Stewart - on 20 Sep 2016
In reply to james.slater:

Cheers, they sound great. I'm not bothered about ticking the super-classics (that could wait for a later visit), I'd just like to get a good taste of the placem - soak up the exposure, on good rock, hopefully without avoiding epics.
Jon Stewart - on 20 Sep 2016
In reply to walts4:

OK, ta!
Ian Patterson on 20 Sep 2016
In reply to John2:

> RÍve de Fer - four pitches of quality 6b climbing in a sensational position.

It's nearly 20 years since I was there but that was the stand out from the easier routes I did, 4 pitches of proper Verdon exposure and rock. We did it early in the trip and it really gave a feel for what to expect(!), if it's the upper end of your target grades then might be worth spending a couple of days on easier stuff first.
Bulls Crack - on 20 Sep 2016
In reply to Jon Stewart:

L'ťperon Sublime (6b)

Very good I seem to remember.

Can't say I ever really got to like the place - the abseils got wearisome very quickly and the perfect grey bits can get a bit dull imo.
nniff - on 20 Sep 2016
In reply to Jon Stewart:

You must do Wide is Love - one pitch and as good as it gets as an intro. It will certainly get you used to the space. Bad place to ab of the end of the rope........you won't touch a thing for 900 feet.

Eperon de Bananes
Frimes et Chatiments (bring your sky hooks as above if it's all a bit much)
Mort a Venise
Ticket Danger - with first pitch at A0. Probably free these days.....
Le Miroir du Fou (easy access, above the road)
Dingomaniaque
Polpett
Passion d'amour

Solanut
For a big day out - Pichenibule with the penultimate pitch at A1 instead of 7b+

A Tout Coeur too, apparently - but we didn't get very far on this a few years ago. I don't think we were alone, as the bolt was well equipped with fleeing tat.

Should keep you busy for a while
Jon Stewart - on 20 Sep 2016
In reply to dave657:

> Finally, don't always believe the guide book if it says a route is fully bolted...

> Although I also stuck to the bolted stuff, so I'm being even less helpful!

Sorry, I wasn't very clear what I meant about sport climbing. I'd rather be on bolted routes, but prepared for big run-outs and placing the odd bit of trad gear, as I understand is the general style of the Gorges. By "sport climbing" I meant single pitch/hard as you can/falling off/redpointing etc, which isn't what I'm into. If have to rest on a bolt then, hey, big deal, but I'm not going back down and starting again!
Jon Stewart - on 20 Sep 2016
In reply to nniff:

Brilliant, thanks.
Ian Butterworth - on 20 Sep 2016
In reply to Jon Stewart:
Last visit to Verdon was 4 years ago. We had some 'inside' info from locals and a copy of Verdon 2010 which is an excellent photo too guide. I would recommend some of the new 6a+/6b routes we did which are very well bolted, on great rock and not at all polished. We enjoyed the routes on Dent D'Aire including Petit Chat and Dolce Vita both 6a+ and good value with relatively easy abseil descents to the start. Le Don De L'Aigle is a superb 6a+ on Coll De L'Ane just outside the gorge proper but with superb views over Lac Du Sainte-Croix and easy access. I enjoyed Sucepe 6b+ on Dingomaniaque which is tough but well bolted and not very polished. Great place, enjoy!
John2 - on 20 Sep 2016
In reply to nniff:

Dingomaniaque - fantastic positions, but polished even by Avon Gorge standards.
Mick Ward - on 20 Sep 2016
In reply to Ian Butterworth:

Hi Ian,

Glad to see you're still fighting the good fight.

Mick (from Bradford, aeons ago)
snoop6060 - on 20 Sep 2016
In reply to Jon Stewart:
RiviŤre d'Argent (6b+)

This is good Jon.

Proper Verdon goutes, bullet hard rock and techy for the grade (it is France after all). Comfy stances which help and reasonably easy abb in. Only 4 pitches but I distinctly recall being pleased it was no longer as it's pretty thin for grade making it exposed.

I'm keen on L'Ange en D£composition which is next to it. Well assuming I don't get spanked on the first route like last time.
Post edited at 21:36
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JJL - on 14:03 Wed
In reply to Jon Stewart:

Well, the last 2 pitches maybe, but it starts as a hairline crack and gets wider...

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