OMG, what a week it was. So much to say, it's hard to put it down but heck - here goes.
First of all the facts, Janne, Arno, Mick, Pieter, Cyriel, Ivana and Ans all arrived before me - I chose to enjoy the delights of queensday in the Vondel Park.
This is the complete group:
So Charlie, Arthur, Sasha, India and myself rocked up on Sunday after a 12 hour drive. The view of the tent says it all:
The campsite was pretty good, though the stoney ground made pegging a REAL problem.
Honestly I have never seen so much rock in one place, Provence is everything they say it is - amazing formations, beautiful scenery and georgeous weather. It rained once in the evening while we were there and we didn't loose a day climbing.
This is how we spend each evening. (Personally I have never camped in such perfect conditions)
So lets cut the boring shit out and get down to the facts.
Orpierre is a lovely sleepy town, nestled amongst some of the best climbing available. After a weekend in Belgium is was great to see how well the French managed to grade the routes (after all it is the FRENCH grading system we all know and love). The village sports a few bars, a great climbing shop, supermarket and the like.
The rock was brilliant, each route superbly bolted - the easy grades bolted as if you were on the outsidce wall at Sloterdijk, above 6a the bolts were slightly further apart but still nothing like the nightmare that was Awir, or Beez. Honestly it makes you wonder why you'd ever want to go anywhere else.
Over 6 days we all managed some great leads (myself included). The kids lapped up the climbing, canoeing and mountain biking and by the end of the week we had all enjoyed it to the max.
Pieter pointed us further afield to an idyllic crag near a river which was awesome.
In all fairness, who cares about the grades - for lunch saucisson & french bread ; for dinner steak and wine - even Art (first time climber) became born again hard. By far one of the BEST climbing destinations I have ever been to... Roll on next year...
p.s. Has anyone noticed that the Chillaz rope bag is a perfect fit for a baguette :-)
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