We've been making the most of these great conditions and have enjoyed a few big adventures.
A few weeks ago I completed a traverse of the western section of this fine ridge: www.mountain-journeys.co.uk/blog/segaria-ridge-traverse-part-2 -- and now was time to finish it off by climbing the eastern section in full.
A short walk under the steep eastern face leads to rough ground and the initial traverse pitch. This is easy, but exposed and it's nice to have a rope on. Once in the notch it's a case of follow the wide ridge until an abseil station is reached (20m). More easy climbing leads out of this deep notch along more of the ridge to reach another significant notch. Here it's necessary to climb leftwards along a platform (not to the right as described by Rockfax) below very steep ground, as this eases (about 10m) follow a ledge system back right towards a fixed rope and belay above. From here easy scrambling leads to the summit cross.
Soon after this is a very narrow section of ridge, this is really exciting. Once beyond this the ridge widens considerably and easy scrambling and walking remain to reach the wide col. We turned left (south) here and headed back to the car.
The plan was to repeat Epsilon Central (HS) on this massive crag. However, even though we started out early, there were already 3 teams on the route, and 2 more teams arrived shortly after us!! Plan b, a slightly easier route called 'El Moro' (Severe). This is about 350 - 400m and contains a fair bit of scrambling too. We had the route to ourselves which is always nice. We didn't have the base of the route to ourselves though! Goats, a whole;e herd of them, came to see us. They particularly liked our climbing kit. It was a privilege to be so close to these animals and for them to clearly not be afraid of us. A beautiful start to the climbing.
About 10 pitches later we arrived at the top of the route, briefly considered a summit dash too, but thought better of it as our water supply was by now very low. The descent into the huge gully was easier than I remembered it, thankfully.
Toix Este - Horst:
This is a favourite of ours and a route we've done many times with many people, it's always a pleasure. Starting high above the sea and with views across to the Penon, it's a wonderful setting. The 1st pitch of climbing is the most difficult, but the rest of the route (4 more pitches) are still very worthwhile and on super sharp rock that's nice and solid. The route terminates at what looks like a small quarry. Walk left here (looking in) to gain the continuation ridge above, this leads up to the Mirador at about grade 1.
From the Mirador it's easy to finish off and head to town for a beer. Or, why not walk to Toix Oeste and climb Cilber up to the Toix ridge and finish with a full traverse of this, again finishing back at the Mirador. Then you've really earned that beer!
On this occasion we cut it short and called it a day after the Toix Este route.
Via Ferrata - Ponoch:
A regular trip for me, a re-visit after 4 years for Kate, and a first time for Leanne. Much fun was had by all on this metalled, vertical playground.
Cloud rolled in and shrouded us, but later cleared to show the full scale of Ponoch. Note to self - must get more routes ticked on this mountain.
Magical Mystery Tour, Toix sea cliffs:
A magical expedition to a dramatic sea cliff. The 40m free-hanging abseil sets the tone for this serious adventure. Whilst the initial climbing is easy (about grade 2), this soon changes and the challenges come thick and fast.
As with all the very best routes, the hardest pitch is saved until the end, with 40m of grade 5 and only about 6 bolts protecting the whole pitch, keeps things interesting that's for sure. A simply brilliant route.
Thanks to: Kate, Leanne, Joe, Ann, Kim, and Susie for joining in these adventures.