/ Yosemite training in Europe

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squicky - on 20 Dec 2012
Is there anywhere in Europe that mimics Yosemite granite? I'm planning to spend 3-4 weeks there next autumn so hoping to get a head start before going. Or would it be better to do lots of long multipitch routes and learn the specific technique out there?

ashtond6 - on 21 Dec 2012
In reply to squicky:

Orco valley just north of Turin
The Grist - on 21 Dec 2012
In reply to squicky: Never been to Yosemite but climbed in Val di mello this summer. I have heard it said that it is similar to Yosemite. Climbing was generally either granite slabs or cracks. Did some routes around 300metres in height. I think you will struggle to find anything approaching the height of half dome in Europe on granite.
conorcussell - on 21 Dec 2012
In reply to The Grist: Kundalini into Luna Nascente in Val Di Mello isn't far off the height of Reg. north west face route on half dome, i think.
Fredt on 21 Dec 2012
In reply to squicky:

We prepared for The Nose by aiding lots of routes on Stanage, practiced hauling halfway up Millstone, and had a hilarious time setting up portaledges at Agden Rocher.
The Grist - on 21 Dec 2012
In reply to conorcussell: I did both in two seperate days. Back to back would be a bloody good effort. Although in reality perfectly possible.
Loughan - on 21 Dec 2012
In reply to squicky: Fairhead has a reasonable choice of crack climbing with an airy feel, there's a hanging belay or two to choose from and the weather's better than california as well....if only!
Nick_Scots on 21 Dec 2012
In reply to squicky: Go to Greenland (still europe?) or Norway for a few weeks in the Summer.
seankenny - on 21 Dec 2012
In reply to squicky:

Some thoughts from going to the Valley this autumn:

The rock really isn't like anything you get in the UK. Can't say for Valle de Mello, but it doesn't equate to UK routes at all. Yosemite feels weird and alien at first, but you do get used to it with practice. Honest! Being able to climb cracks here first is vital.

Full body fitness is vital, almost as useful as the typical Brit climbing wall fitness. You want to be strong all over as there's lots of high stepping, palming and general yarding about.

Get good shoes. I found I couldn't wear my usual UK ones, partly from the heat (it's a hot place) and also because they were agony in cracks. Get a pair of specialist crack climbing shoes.

I think if you've three or four weeks you'll have enough time, depends what you want to do too, a wall, or long free(ish) routes, or cragging.

Hephaestus - on 21 Dec 2012
In reply to squicky: Running Hill Pits (and other lancs quarries) for the jamming cracks and offwidths

Andy Fielding - on 22 Dec 2012
In reply to seankenny:
> Get a pair of specialist crack climbing shoes.
I was there this May and I'm aiming to go again next May. My ankles were pretty roughed up using my "normal" shoes. I'm looking at getting a pair of La Sportiva TC Pros.

Lion Bakes on 22 Dec 2012
In reply to squicky:


Cassin Route on the Badile etc.
seankenny - on 22 Dec 2012
In reply to Andy Fielding:

I used a pair of Mythos, which worked fine for me. I've heard TC Pros are the business!
RichardP - on 22 Dec 2012
In reply to squicky:
Have you done "The Big Overhang" an A3 (there is a 5b/c short pitch to the beginning of the route) route in Gogarth North Stack, Holyhead?
before I went to the valley years ago I cleaned the route after my mate lead it.
I can't remember who took how long on the route. but one of us climbed it in 5 hours and the other one took 6 hours. We did it over a weekend and stayed with another mate who lives on Angleysea
Rick Graham on 22 Dec 2012
In reply to squicky:
Usual mixed bag of advice from UKC.

Mello and Orco are the nearest Europe has to offer for Yosemite Training.

However,,,, expect to be shocked to find how smooth, relentless and unforgiving of poor technique, Valley cracks and slabs are on first acquaintance. You will be spanked!

As far as Big Walling goes get a John Long book.

Nobody expects El Cap to look so impressive.

Drop a couple of grades, get as much footage in as possible and in a few days you should be able to enjoy world quality classics.
king_of_gibraltar - on 22 Dec 2012
In reply to squicky:

La Pedriza, Spain.
jon on 22 Dec 2012
In reply to squicky:

Try googling Cadarese, Esigo, Medji. Be aware though that, as Rick says, Yosemite cracks tend to be smoother and less forgiving and with less features than anywhere else!
rgold - on 22 Dec 2012
In reply to jon:

What makes Yosemite unlike any other granite area in the world is that, for the most part, Yosemite was under the glacier, not above it. Lots of edges have been rounded off, and in some places glacier polish has made the rock slick. The kinds of crystals one sees on alpine granite have mostly been polished away. Finger and hand cracks are not going to be all that much different from other regions (except possibly for the lack of holds outside the crack), but there is also a great variety of wider cracks to be dealt with.
kenr - on 23 Dec 2012
Thanks so much for explaining why Yosemite granite is different from granite in the higher massifs in France.
Andy Fielding - on 23 Dec 2012
In reply to Rick Graham:
> You will be spanked!
I got well and truely spanked. Standing at the foot of El Cap I couldn't believe how smooth and polished that piece of rock is. Only went there to do some one pitch routes on the left hand side. Did a 5.8 offwidth as my "welcome to Yosemite" route. Quickly retired to Manure Pile Buttress to have a go at some sensible stuff. Hasn't put me off though, I'll be back in May.
squicky - on 26 Dec 2012
In reply to Andy Fielding:

Cheers guys, some great info here. Sounds like you have to go to Yosemite to climb Yosemite so the emphasis should be on getting aid and crack skills up to par and then learning about the specific climbing style when there.
Andy Fielding - on 02 Jan 2013
In reply to squicky:
Yosemite isn't just big walls, multi-pitch/multi-day routes. There are plenty of single pitch trad routes and multi-pitch (easy) stuff. If you want a long day out followed by a 2 hour abseil get yourself on Royal Arches.

Try this link for guide books. There are some free PDF tasters you can down load.

peterbeaumont - on 02 Jan 2013
In reply to squicky: val di melo is kind of similar but trade routes like kundalini even into luna nascente don't really compare with the length and commitment of reg NW on half dome. ie they are e1/2-ish and all free-able. found reg nw much bigger undertaking. there are walls there but quite hard. having been to yosemite four times for both free climbing and big wall attempts i would say best thing you can do for the big stuff is practice the basics like efficient jumaring and getting familiar and quick on basic aid techniques and the hauling set up which you can practice anywhere. just organising the systems the first time is what stops many in their tracks - and i say that from bitter experience.

the free climbing in the valley and tuolumne is great but quite gear intensive. the guidebooks generally say what gear size routes need. we always took 2-2.5 x everything on rack to 6 inches though we borrowed a bunch. and in terms of rock there is everything from glacier polished frightener slabs to cracks of every kind to jug hauling up rough chicken heads.

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