Quick Trip to Swiss

 

Swiss River

So I was lucky enough to visit the bouldering Mecca that is Switzerland for a short trip this winter. Being predominantly a sport climber I was super excited to try hard, pull hard and do some blocs!

I stayed in a lovely little village called Bellinzona which is close to the three main bouldering areas: Brione, Chironico and Cresciano. If you haven’t visited the area then it is utterly beautiful: located in a valley with huge mountains on either side, and with temperatures near to 0°C the tops were often covered in snow. Definitely glad I took thermal Odlo base layers!

So what did I do? Eat – sleep – boulder repeat. Chuck in a few trips to Lidl or Aldi for the essential recovery pastries and that is basically my trip!

On the first day I was unlucky enough to split my tip on my index finger- this meant lots of tape and ClimbOn! for the rest of the trip. The rock is quite coarse so bites away at your skin. Despite this I still managed to tick some classics (Tomahawk, 7b, Chironico and Brione Arete, 7a, Brione are definite recommendations).

I managed to drag myself up Dr. Crimp, 7c, Chironico - my hardest climb of the trip (for you grade chasers). It took me a few goes to sort the beta, but had it done within the hour. This suits my style down to a Tee - everyone knows I love to emergency crimp at every possible occasion, though none-the-less I was pretty psyched with this as I had never done 7c so quick. 

Roz wears Tenaya Oasi shoes from Beta Designs #babe

Through out the next few days I managed to total up 6 splits on my hands - two on one finger, which I thought was quite impressive! This was probably due to trying the super crimpy Teamwork, 8a. Unfortunately didn’t quite get myself up this one. Despite a promising first and only session on it, in which I did it in 2, the problem was wet for the remainder of the trip. Oh well - something to go back to next time!

I would definitely advise Switzerland as a bouldering destination for those bloc-shuffling lovers. There are so many classic lines, from 7b up, although you can go and enjoy whatever your grade. Remember to take lots of pads, thermals (hats, buffs, hand-warmers; it’s seriously cold this time of year), ClimbOn!, a head-torch for those inevitable night-time sends (this is when the connies - or conditions - get really good) and lots of broccoli - it costs £3.50 for a stem of broccoli, outrageous! I am super keen to train and get back out there ASAP... See you there!

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