Saint Leger, France

© Stephen Horne

The wonderful limestone valley of Saint Léger 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.

Geoff Unger smashes the classic 7a of La Lévrotte on a great vertical wall at Saint Léger  © Jack Geldard
Geoff Unger smashes the classic 7a of La Lévrotte on a great vertical wall at Saint Léger
© Jack Geldard

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?

Dougal Taverner all guns blazing on the shortish, but power-endurance 8a of Hilti Blues  © Stephen Horne
Dougal Taverner all guns blazing on the shortish, but power-endurance 8a of Hilti Blues
© Stephen Horne

A climber on the brilliant long 8a of La Farce Tranquille  © Stephen Horne
A climber on the brilliant long 8a of La Farce Tranquille
© Stephen Horne


When to Go

The prime time is spring and autumn. However in summer it is possible to climb on the shady North Face and in winter the south facing crags do get a lot of sun, so if you get good weather you could be lucky.

How to Get There

The closest airports that are served by budget airlines are Grenoble (2.5 hours from the crag) and Nimes (1.5 hours from the crag). A car is fairly essential for this crag as it is not close to a village and access on foot or by public transport would be difficult.

Accommodation Advertise here

No Premier Listings found in this area

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. 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 situated at the crag parking.

There are plenty of restaurants in the surrounding villages.

Vaison and Buis les Baronnies are your best bet for a bigger shop. with a variety of shops, bakeries, etc. The smaller villages nearer to the crag often have bakeries and small local stores.

Outdoor Shops Advertise here

No Premier Listings found in this area

Other Activities
Fantastic wine, amazing scenery and top class road cycling.

St Leger Panorama  © Alan James
St Leger Panorama
© Alan James

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21 Apr, 2012
I love St Leger! Went there for a few days last September, really amazing!
24 Apr, 2012
Or here: And if you go the the gite near the parking area (La Bergerie des Salamandres) and show you have a copy of the local guide they will give you the updates for the new sectors.
24 Apr, 2012
'Topo Varpire' signs have all gone! Shame really as the picture of the man legging it with bags of cash always made me laugh.
24 Apr, 2012
There was a photo about topo vampires (as mentioned) that I commented on as it mentioned Rockfax. It was then removed and I though UKC were responsible, but that wasn't the case, and I posted in protest. Anyway, I shall make my point here instead. AJM, funny you say that about the local guide. The topo vampire sign moaned about the fact that funding for equipping the crags comes from the sale of local guide books, and that books by Rockfax, Jingo Shitly and other tourists reduce this fund - rightly so. I found the timing of this article very poignant as there was also a front page article on how the UK Bolt Fund was doing, and drumming up support of this. I would like to know if Rockfax donate any of the sales of their foreign guidebooks to local drillers? Don't get me wrong, I love Rockfax guides (I own several) but if I ever get the urge to clip bolts abroad, I might consider buying the local guide instead. I also understand that making these guidebooks is a labour of love, but poking your finger in other people's pies just seems rude...even if it is a Tarte Tatin!
Without wishing to open a whole can of worms again, can I refer you to this thread - There is a piece written by Adrian linked to at the top which has now gone since we changed the web site. I will try and find it and repost it on the Rockfax site. Alan
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