/ Africa @ El Chorro

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riff156 17 Oct 2019

Hello, 

Does anybody know if the route called Africa at El Chorro is open for climbing, as I heard a rumour that the routes have been closed because of the walkway, any info would be appreciated thanks 

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balmybaldwin 17 Oct 2019
In reply to riff156:

It's years (10+) since I've been to El Chorro (and we did Africa which has an amazing position) I suspect you are right that the new walk way will have closed the route but I haven't kept in touch with the access issues for years now, but at least I've given you a bump!

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Sean_J 17 Oct 2019
In reply to riff156:

The bolts might be pretty shonky by now. Approach by boat was always an option in the past, if not the most convenient, it might now be the best option without upsetting the walkway operators too much. Would add some fun to the route if nothing else.

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In reply to riff156:

If you can get to it from the bottom then you could probably do it but that would require a boat. You wouldn't be able to top out onto the walkway either since it is covered so you would have to return to the boat.

I would strongly urge you not to do any of this though. There are all sorts of potential access problems in El Chorro and I think it would be irresponsible for visiting climbers to provoke what is an already delicate situation by climbing a route like this. The routes in the Gorge are officially banned by both the walkway owners and the environmental lobby. It is just asking for trouble and there are so many great routes elsewhere.

Alan

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riff156 17 Oct 2019
In reply to Alan James - UKC and UKH:

Ok will avoid it then, thanks for the feedback everyone 🙂

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MNA123 18 Oct 2019
In reply to riff156:

Many years ago (10 I think). I was in El Chorro and we planned to do Africa. 

We made our way into the gorge on the old broken Camino del ray (a fun experience in itself) and through the little tunnel to the ab point for Africa.

Now the issue we had was the guide specified a certain length of ab rope, 70m I think, and we only had a 60m rope.

My climbing partner told me over and over again the rope wasn't long enough, however I was adamant that we would be able to sort it, there would be an intermediate belay etc.

So I set up the ab and off I popped Into the unknown. On the way down I spotted a ledge below me off to the left and convinced myself i would be able to reach it on the rope, so I carried on.

I reached the end of the rope and realised I was nowhere near the ledge I had seen, furthermore I was now just hanging in space as the rock in front  of me was overhanging and had pushed me out and away from it.

Luckily I had tied a knot in the end of my ab rope, however I was now just dangling in space a good hundred or so feet above the gorge floor and the only thought running through my head was 'I WISH I HAD PURCHASED CLIMBING TRAVEL INSURANCE'.

My climbing partner, sat in safety about 100 feet above me thought my current situation was rather amusing, I did not agree with him.

Just by chance, not prior planning, I had a sling attached to my harness which I was able to use as a prussik. After lots of huffing, puffing and pulling I was able to make sufficient upward movement to put myself in a position where I was able to vigorously rock backwards and forwards until I gained enough momentum to make contact with the rock infront of me.

Once I latched myself to the rock, which on this part of the crag had the consistency of a digestive biscuit, I hurriedly tied myself into the rope using some kind of gigantic granny note, yelled to my partner to take in and I climbed/swam back up to the ab ledge.

As I pulled myself onto the ledge and collapsed, an exhausted, sweaty and dirty mess my climbing partner looked down at me and calmly said 'I told you the rope wasn't long enough'.

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Presley Whippet 19 Oct 2019
In reply to riff156:

In 2014? Just after the re opening of the camino, I was told of a pair of fixed cables spanning the gorge just above water level which could be used to access Africa Wall. These would certainly add to the terror. 

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polivmi1 08 Nov 2019
In reply to riff156:

We did the route like 4 years ago. Approach - go to the green bridge by camino entrance and scramble down to the river, carefully traverse on some old rusted cables to the cable that is crossing the river. Use the cable to scramble to the other side (gloves, slings or something moving you can slide over is useful), after crossing head up right on more cables till you get to a fixed rope, jumar or prusic up and traverse more to the route start. Trad climbing and at the top either go down (we tried abseiling on the new Caminito, but there was a guard, so either do that late), do the same approach on the way back. Or long walk on the top, around and back on road...

Pretty complicated for few not so good and sharp pitches Position was great, but so many tourists everywhere...

Not sure how are the bolts and fixed ropes right now, so take care.

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Garethza 08 Nov 2019
In reply to MNA123:

And its posts like this that make me come back to the UKC forums time and time again... 

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