/ Verdon Top Ticks

This topic has been archived, and won't accept reply postings.
MischaHY - on 08 May 2017
My girlfriend and I are headed to the Verdon next week and are looking to get tick as many classic routes as possible! Ideally big, exciting exposed adventures. We're looking for recommendations from 5+ to 6c or VS-E4 trad routes.

Some recommendations of harder single pitch classics would also be highly appreciated! Up to around 7c. We like slabs, crimps and weird groove stuff. Keen to try some harder classics.

Big routes with 1-2 pitches of hard climbing up to 7c are also definitely worth considering. I'm thinking Pichenibule or similar.

Very psyched and looking forward to the recommendations!
climbingpixie on 08 May 2017
In reply to MischaHY:

Make sure you do l'Ange en Decomposition - it's one of the best sport routes I've ever done.
Tyler - on 08 May 2017
In reply to MischaHY:

I've never done a bad route there, all the well known classics have lived up to the hype. The only trad route I've done is la Demand but you'll know that one already. In fact I'd be recommending well known classics so no point repeating them here except to say Debilof and Sinfoni del Vento are worth seeking out and if it's weirdness your after Mission impossible involves some awkward bridging. I've never been to 'new' side of the gorge only the la Palud side.
Andy Moles - on 08 May 2017
In reply to MischaHY:

I think my favourite route in the Verdon is still one called Ras le Bolchoi on the Falaise de l'Imbut. Improbable looking 6c on amazing rock in a stunning part of the gorge away from the polish of the l'Escales classics.

Good luck freeing Pichenibule at 7c, that pitch looks utterly heinous.

La Demande is great but I would avoid doing it in hot sunny weather, the polish would be nasty.

Finally, get the recent French guide '50 ans...', it's easily the best for getting inspired.
MischaHY - on 08 May 2017
In reply to Andy Moles:

> I think my favourite route in the Verdon is still one called Ras le Bolchoi on the Falaise de l'Imbut. Improbable looking 6c on amazing rock in a stunning part of the gorge away from the polish of the l'Escales classics.

Sounds good! I'll look it up.

> Good luck freeing Pichenibule at 7c, that pitch looks utterly heinous.

Ha, I'm ever optimistic!
MischaHY - on 08 May 2017
In reply to Tyler:

On the contrary, go ahead and list the classics! I don't want to miss anything and love a personal recommendation.
ripper - on 08 May 2017
In reply to MischaHY:

Empreinte des Millenaires is fairly new and felt pretty adventurous to me!
MischaHY - on 08 May 2017
In reply to ripper:

Looks great, any idea about where to find topo's? I see it's not in the Rockfax Cote de Azur.
Fraser on 08 May 2017
In reply to MischaHY:

Never been, but I believe 'Wide Is Love' is supposed to be a belter:

Wide is Love (6a)
ripper - on 08 May 2017
In reply to MischaHY:

it was in a French guidebook that my partner had - which I think he'd bought locally. Luckily I can read a bit of French. Unluckily I didn't realise the descent route was described on the previous page!
Great route, certainly felt tough for the grade - a couple of very thin slabby pitches, one near the start and one near the top, and a fairly strenuous traverse.
Matt Vigg - on 08 May 2017
In reply to MischaHY:

Haven't done anything hard there but one of the best routes I've done anywhere is a route called ULA, not far from la Demande, only slightly harder but 1000 times better in my opinion. Bolted but I think we took some trad kit. It's an awesome place, have fun!
Deadeye - on 08 May 2017
In reply to Matt Vigg:

> Haven't done anything hard there but one of the best routes I've done anywhere is a route called ULA, not far from la Demande, only slightly harder but 1000 times better in my opinion. Bolted but I think we took some trad kit. It's an awesome place, have fun!

Ula's upper groove is nice, but the bottom 25% is scrappy and wandering. Demande is much better climbing and line; although a bit polished now.
All academic as the OP wanted 1-2 pitches, not 8-10!
MischaHY - on 08 May 2017
In reply to Deadeye:

Oh no, I want big routes as well! Just for harder routes I was asking about lines similar to Pichenibule i.e. big routes with 1-2 hard pitches.
The Grist - on 08 May 2017
In reply to MischaHY:

Hi Mischa,

Routes I really enjoyed are:

Rivière d'argent. It has two outstanding pitches of 6b+. The third pitch in particular is amazing. The other two pitches are run out 6a.
Heure zero. Gets the shade in the pm. Has a fantastic top pitch around 6c+.
Voie ULA. Did this from ground up (rather than abseiling and missing the start). A great adventure. I enjoyed it more than demande.
Luna bong. Got to be done for the abseil alone.

If you feel adventurous go try necronominicon. It is next to Luna bong. I got totally lost on it and ended up somehow aiding / climbing my way out. It was memorable though. See if you make a better job of it. It is supposed to be 6c but it felt more like e4 6a. I only saw a couple of old bolts in 70 metres or so of climbing. Maybe I was on the wrong line.

Enjoy.
ads.ukclimbing.com
Yorik on 08 May 2017
In reply to MischaHY:

Necronomicon.
Matt Vigg - on 09 May 2017
In reply to Deadeye:

Yeah there's one pitch low down which goes left and right to avoid some choss but the rest I remember being really good. La Demande I've done twice about five years apart and it was more polished the second time, that was nearly ten years ago!

Anyway there are better routes than both of these and if I can find my guide I'll try and recommend some more...
stp - on 09 May 2017
In reply to MischaHY:

Agree about L'Ange being just the thing for an exposed wall route. If 6c+ is harder than you want there's another similar route at 6b-ish - Rev de Fer, if I remember correctly.

Pichenibule crux pitch is 7b+. The full route starts from the ground. The crux pitch is vertical, only about 25 feet long with bolts close together for aiding. That route has lots of exposure though. So if you did the whole thing that could tick all boxes in one go.

Though for the hard route maybe Polpott is better. It might get 7c+ though I think it's meant to be soft for the grade - unusual for Verdon.

L'Oiseau de Feu is a good, single pitch 6c. Long run outs but not too hard - E3 5c. Tapis Voilant is also a good exposed single pitch climb, 6c-ish if I remember right.

All these are old routes and all on one side of the gorge - the sunny side. But there is simply tons development elsewhere. Grimpeur magazine dedicated a whole issue to new developments there a few years ago. It's basically a topo guide so get hold of that if you can. It can get very hot in the gorge so worth having some alternative shady crags to visit - and these newer crags probably offer the best climbing there anyway.
gav - on 09 May 2017
In reply to Matt Vigg:

> Haven't done anything hard there but one of the best routes I've done anywhere is a route called ULA, not far from la Demande, only slightly harder but 1000 times better in my opinion. Bolted but I think we took some trad kit. It's an awesome place, have fun!

When there last summer, the bolts had been stripped from ULA. May not have been replaced.
Matt Vigg - on 09 May 2017
In reply to gav:

That probably makes it even better!
Tyler - on 09 May 2017
In reply to MischaHY:

Apart from the two I mentioned (Debilof is a well known historical classic but I notice only I've ticked Sinfonie in the UKC logbook but, assuming the bolts are in good nick, that should not put you off). The other classics I can recommend are:
L'Ange en Décomposition (7a)
Surveiller et Punir (7a+)
Rêve de Fer (6b+)
Oddly one of my favourite routes (No self control) doesn't seem to be in the log book. All the routes around Troisième Ciel (7a+) were very good (and I'm please to see are now upgraded!)
neilh - on 09 May 2017
In reply to MischaHY:

CTulah 7a. One pitch. The ab to it is unreal.
wbo - on 09 May 2017
In reply to MischaHY: the top pitch of Tanti Auguri is very much worth doing up a hanging arete

MischaHY - on 11 May 2017
In reply to MischaHY:

Great recommendations! Getting a good tick list together. Especially looking for the big days out! So many adventures on the cards.
nniff - on 12 May 2017
In reply to Fraser:

Wide is Love should definitely be on the list - easy access - one pitch abseil in, to a belay that is a long horizontal pocket with three bolts, on the very lip of a bulge and nothing but 900 feet of air beneath your heels. Pulling the ab rope is a sobering experience, as is tying in and checking everything. Leaving the stance is character-building. However, once the firsts bolt is clipped, the sun comes out and the birds begin to sing. Lovely climbing up the face of a big pillar with space everywhere.

It's a good route to get your head sorted, but leaving an ab rope in place greatly diminishes the experience.
#4fs - on 12 May 2017
In reply to MischaHY:
Get the French guide, available in la Pallud, it shows the escape routes!

Grade difficulty depends on when it was done and who did it first.

It seemed to me, you take a Spanish French grade and add 2. Not always buy often.
Post edited at 17:10
alpinist63 - on 12 May 2017
In reply to MischaHY:

some of my favourite shorter routes:
arabe dément 6a+ ( short, easy access.. good start); massacre à la tronconneuse 6b+ (superb); rêve de fer 6b+; heavy metal ( old school but retrobolted ) , belle fille sûre 6b+ ; tanti auguri 6c only about 15-20m but well worth doing ; first 2 pitches of dérobé, than rasoir 6a (afternoon shade ) , barbapoupon 6b+ , saut d'homme 6a , first 2 pitches of surveiller et punir followed by frimes et châtiments 6c
longer routes: demande 6a the absolute classic, ula 6b as demande but harder and only the belays equipped, so take enough gear; pichenibule 6c/A0 the short boltladder is very easy to aid but the position, traversing above the overhanging wall is unique. the pitches below the terrace are not that easy, best abseil down ticket danger + 1 rappel from terrace.
for a change: on the Malines cliff: either babouchemolle (6b+) or Chan-The an old school 6a where a couple of cams (med/large) are useful.
Eycharme: crise de gouttes 6b+ excellent, many 'gouttes d'eau' and morning shade
Jon Stewart - on 12 May 2017
In reply to MischaHY:

I recommend abbing into the wrong route, so you have to aid sideways across the crag to something you can climb, over and over again. If you can accidentally ab over the edge of a massive overhang that you can't possibly climb, this will make the trip even more memorable, but do try not to forget prussiks (or how to use them). Get your ropes stuck in trees, find yourself at the bottom of 8 pitches of hard climbing with hardly any bolts just as it starts to rain, or if you're sick of climbing then just wander around the start of the routes wondering what on earth bit of the crag you're at, unable to find anything you're willing to ab down because it all looks utterly horrendous and you've no idea at all if you're in remotely the right place for what is apparently a friendly, popular f6b.

Have fun, it is an awesome place, but it's *a lot* more hassle than pretty much anywhere else I've ever been.
jon_gill1 - on 12 May 2017
In reply to Jon Stewart:

Did you forget your guide book? ;-)
ads.ukclimbing.com
jon_gill1 - on 12 May 2017
In reply to ripper:

Hardest 6b+ I've ever climbed! I would advise taking a few wires too as it will make it feel a lot safer in places!!!
ripper - on 12 May 2017
In reply to jon_gill1:


> Hardest 6b+ I've ever climbed! I would advise taking a few wires too as it will make it feel a lot safer in places!!!

yeah but looking back from the safety of the sofa it was great fun ;-)
jon_gill1 - on 12 May 2017
In reply to ripper:

Not a bad 50th birthday celebration! But I don't fancy that Unknown abseil ever again! ;-)
walts4 - on 13 May 2017
In reply to jon_gill1:

Some great recommendations to whet the appetite for sure, but..................

Acquire or borrow one of these, you may not regret it!

http://www.needlesports.com/2952/products/black-diamond-cliffhanger.aspx
#4fs - on 13 May 2017
In reply to walts4:

Lots available in la Pallud. Lol. Top place.

Having someone who knows where you are is pretty good too.


This topic has been archived, and won't accept reply postings.