A warm up session at the local Alcalali crag for starters and ticking at least one new route.
Over the weekend we took the dramatic mountain road over the Col de Rates to Bolulla crag. This road is worth the drive all by itself and please make sure to take the time to stop at the café at the top. They serve amazing cakes, oh and the view is spectacular. Late afternoon is the best time for views. But don’t leave it too late, the café closes at 6pm!!
Bolulla crag had been on my list of places to visit for ages, so I was really pleased to be heading there. Access is easy, although parking is limited to around 3 or 4 vehicles. The approach up to the crag is a scramble rather than a walk, very steep and good fun. The base of the crag has a few trees that provide plenty of shade, the crag itself is exposed so can be quite breezy. The guidebook suggests the best feature of this crag is its outlook. I agree. Whilst the climbing is nice, the views are outstanding.
We climbed 4 long single pitch routes this afternoon. All were sustained and all worth doing, with ‘Tutl’ being the highlight for me.
Just a few days ago I traversed the Bernia ridge with Soo, however Kate hadn’t been over it for a few years now and was mad keen to go back! So on Sunday we headed over to Bernia for a rapid ascent of this brilliant ridge. I was focused on a quick traverse in order to help fitness, so kept pushing quite hard most of the way. This resulted in a 4 hour car to car time. The cloud came in a few times and shrouded the ridge, clearing for brief moments before smothering us again, this created wonderfully atmospheric conditions, a real treat.
At the climbing section we caught up with a solo climber. He was being sensible and using ‘roped solo’ techniques to protect the bolted section.
On the hillside behind our house in Llosa de Camacho, I have spotted a potential scrambling route up to the summit. I’ve been itching to check it out, so on Monday teamed up with Kate & Don to go have a look!
Walking from Llosa we followed good trails to L’Ocaive crag, from here the scramble leaves the ‘PR’ route, Kate & Don continued their walk whilst I began the bramble bash! A series of rocky steps provided good sport and thanks to the Wild Boar there are tracks between each buttress of rock. As is to be expected, there’s plenty loose rock up here, but also some wonderfully solid and sharp Limestone. As I neared the final buttress I could hear rustling in the nearby bushes, then they appeared, first about 10 of them, Wild Boar, then about another 10!!! All wanting to get away from me, much to my relief. But what a sight and so close by. I had been humming to myself and generally making a noise as I proceeded up the scramble and can recommend this as it’s better to disturb the Boar in advance of your arrival.
There appeared to be impenetrable vegetation ahead, but again thanks to the Boar a path led through this and soon onto the well marked PR trail. Soon meeting up with Kate & Don again for a return walk via L’Ocaive and home.
On Tuesday, along with our friend Ann, we had planned to visit the local crag of L’Ocaive, but low cloud was making everything feel damp. So instead we tried our local in a neighbouring valley and went to Covatelles crag. This was a first for us, having never been before. The rough track made for a challenging approach drive (well done Ann), but the walk in was nice and easy. The climbing felt hard for the grades and generally very steep. One route we climbed had a huge overhang at the start, this led to very pumped arms!! A bit of aid climbing was resorted to higher up the route, but we did it.
By Thursday our local crag, L’Ocaive was all dried out and looking mighty fine again. A session here saw us tick another 6 routes including the magnificent ‘Placa Mania’. When the sun is beating down, this crag is the perfect venue as it stays shady until about 3pm. So we were able to enjoy pleasant temperatures but still get some sun during the late afternoon. Thankfully no aid climbing today!
If you’re looking for an action packed holiday or short break here in Spain, give us a call / email and let’s make it happen. Rock climbing, mountain walking, scrambling, canyoning, and via ferrata.