Archive for the ‘Grau Dels Masets’ Category

2016-07-17 Spain, Siurana, Grau Masets Abaix   2 comments

So nice to be home.  The old stomping ground, so to speak.  Siurana well known the world over as a top climbing venue is dreadfully hot in summer, but we descend to the lower of the three Masets sectors just as shade is arriving at 4pm.  And even though young Paco is rocking version 2 of the definitive guide, today I’m testing a new app – Climb Around.  This digital guide for smart phones currently has topos for Siurana, Rodellar, Montserrat Nord, and Sant Llorenç De Munt, all available as separate downloads, and all free.  That’s right – Free.  Gratis.  Sin pagar.  Nada, zip, zilch.  The app’s still in beta, but I have all four sectors downloaded, occupying a paltry 195Mb of space.  So how does the app compare to the Brascó guide?

First impression is it looks nice, but is short of quite a few sectors.  It has the well known and important ones though.  Being a digital version too, it should get updates as and when new routes are bolted, depending on their update policy, of course. 

As for the climbing, we warm up on Aleva, 6b+  and get on to El Rey Del Atajo, 6c+ which feels a little dodgy with a tree nearby to some thin moves as you get off the ground.  Wouldn’t want to fall off into a branch.  And then we do the super thin No Ha Hi Pa Per Tant Xoriço, 7a next to it which was nice but we couldn’t flash it – too hot.  There’s some very thin dimples you have to pull off, with crap feet, and it’s just a little too warm.  Wandering down the crag, we see a project rope and some shiny new bolts to the right of No Pierdes El Maná, 7a – someone has been busy squeezing in a new route.  There’s also development at the end of the crag, towards Can Sumera / Can Maquis, but it’s so new that it isn’t in the Climb Around app.

I wanted to post a few app screenshots but the app seems to be protected (“Screenshot was not saved”), so you’ll just have to download it for yourselves – after all it’s free.  The app compares well to the book, though.  The website is in Spanish & Catalan, but my app is in English as per the ‘Device Default’ settings in preferences (well, everything except the sector information text, that still comes up in Spanish).  The app doesn’t seem to be finished yet either.  By that I mean that for each climb, there are 3 stars greyed out beneath each name, but you can’t vote for routes of quality – and I know Masets Abaix – there are some quality routes there.  In fact no sector has any starred routes.  I would like to see the number of quickdraws needed for each climb, as well as the grade and route length (which are both given), though this would be a lot of work to include.  The photo of the sector – taken with a Phantom drone, gives excellent topos.  You can zoom in to a certain extent, not much though.  GPS would be a nice addition too.  Thankfully though, there are no added adverts – let’s hope it stays like that.

We finish the day on Maná, a previous onsight, though this time we traverse left a little lower down than before.  Still a nice climb though.  Download the app, and go climb in Masets Abaix – it’s a grand sector.

6b+   6c+   7a   7a

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Posted 2016/08/02 by allend66 in Grau Dels Masets, Rockclimbing, Siurana

2014-06-03 Grau Massets Esquerra   Leave a comment

A nice early morning start, and we are on Charlie I, 5+ with the sun on our T-shirted backs at 9am, but the temperature is perfect.  I quickly despatch Charlie II, 6a and I’m ready for Fridolin, 7b.  Fresh in my memory and full of beans, I get on it and fall off at the crux, but taking Chema’s beta from yesterday, I put an extender on the last draw to be able to clip it comfortably from the last good hold just above the last rest.  Which is what I do, along with the high right foot to make the small crimps and pull through the crux for the send – also my first Siuranenc 7b even though I sent 7b+ (Massets Abaix) in 2012.  Excellent climb and well recommended.  But I can’t talk Marc into it.  Maybe next time, tio?

We’re back down in Maspu by 1:30pm, just as it’s too hot to climb – And I still have the rest of the day…

Fridolin, 7b

5+   6a   7b   7b

Posted 2014/06/17 by allend66 in Grau Dels Masets, Rockclimbing, Siurana

2014-06-02 Siurana, Totxo Aigor, Massets Esquerra   Leave a comment

Aigor & Frankenstein, the newish crags you see on the side of the road on the approach to L’Aparador look uninspiring, but they’re north facing and today is very hot. El Segurata Assasi, 6a was an interesting warm up, plenty of pockets but overhanging.  The next climb Guspira de Bufafor, 6a+ is reminiscent of the rock in Reserva India, Siurana’s worst sector in my opinion.  Very smooth, dusty and not so nice.  I abandoned the horrible 6b next to it, and the 6c+, Mala Madre had all the difficulty concentrated in 2 moves.  From Aigor round to Frankenstein and we do the painfully sharp 6b, Franziskaner before Cristian has to go to work.

So after a quick brewski in Cornu, I’m back up to Grau Dels Massets Esquerra to meet Chema for our Fridolin project.  This mighty 7b has not been tried since Chema, Oscar and I got on it in early May.  As I’m tired from the morning climbing and doubtful I’ll send it, I volunteer to be route fluffer.  I also had to remember some of the moves on it as well. 

So with draws and a few vital tickmarks in place, Chema almost sends, falling on the last move in the crux.  For my second attempt, I can’t even make the second rest before I’m off – too tired.  Chema’s 2nd attempt, though a little sketchy, (check out the quality fannying-about at 8’58” on this video) is a good send and his first Siuranenc 7b.

An excellent day.

6a   6a+   6c+   6b   7b   7b

Posted 2014/06/16 by allend66 in Grau Dels Masets, Rockclimbing, Siurana

2014-05-09 Siurana, Grau Massets Esquerra   Leave a comment

A quick warm up on Piu Piu, 6b to get the blood flowing, and we have a look at the nice looking 7b, Fridolin right next to the easy 5+ corner.  I am delegated cinta bitch and start up this interesting and sustained beauty.  There’s steady climbing to be had all throughout the route, though thankfully there’s a couple of good rests. 

Fridolin, 7b

After clipping the 2nd (or 3rd even, just about where Oscar is in the above photo) you can get your thoughts together for the continuous moves on thin crimps up to the mini fig tree where there’s a rest off a huge jug.  Then there’s more continuous climbing on thin stuff till you get to a near hands-free at 3/4r’s height.  The crux comes at the last bolt and it had me stumped for a while, but we all take turns to try it out and work out some good beta for it.  But it’s one of those routes that only allows you 2 tries per day as it is very hard on the finger tips and is generally quite physical.

A very nice project to come back to.

6b   7b   7b

Posted 2014/06/10 by allend66 in Grau Dels Masets, Rockclimbing, Siurana

2014-05-01 Siurana, Can Sumera / Grau Massets Abaix   Leave a comment

Good to be back in sol catalan, I’ve met up with a couple of mates from the smoke.  Can Sumera / Can Maquis is on the cards though its very sunny and climbing now in direct sun is too much.  We tick a couple of routes before going on to Massets Abaix.  I do the nice 6c, Classica Bastorra – worthwhile.

D'Equitllevis, 6b   Clasicorra Bastorra, 6c

6b   6b   6c

2013-10-18 Siurana, Grau Dels Massets   Leave a comment

So nice to be back on home turf.  I mean, technically I learnt to climb on trad gear, on cold & windy, usually damp British crags but then I went to Siurana and swapped nuts for bolts, and once you’ve lived in Siurana… I’m reminded of the scene in ‘Down And Out In Beverely Hills’ where the chump’s on all fours with his mug in a dog bowl. 

So I’m back at home now for 9 days and as always the weather’s awesome.  In fact too awesome.  The summer doesn’t want to let go so Grau Massets Camí is very hot for our 6a, Baronia De Cabacés warm up.  Afternoon shade begins here at 3-ish so it’s still early and sunny.  While Cristian and Victor are trying Es Algo, 7a (sent in last year’s August heat, 2nd try) I get on Bon Col·legui, 6c+ (flashed last year).  It’s an interesting climb.  Not my favourite grade, 6c+ but you occasionally get a treat.  Even at 31º.

20131018_132010   20131018_155702

Es Algo, 7a left & Bon Col·legui, 6c+ right.

6a  6c+   6c+

Posted 2013/10/27 by allend66 in Grau Dels Masets, Rockclimbing, Siurana

2013-10-18 Siurana, Grau Massets   Leave a comment

Cami to warm up, a quick 6a which we’ve done a dozen times, then we go over to Esquerra.  While Cristian and Victor try and find the soft touch on Es Algo, 7a, I do the 6c+ next to it as I already have the 7a sent.  Nice technical climbing, I miss sending on the first try but get it done ok.  I didn’t think I had tried this before, but half way up it I remembered the flake and holes – maybe trying it with Paco & Chema, one time?

It’s hot but still good for it.

6a   6c+   6c+

Posted 2013/10/21 by allend66 in Grau Dels Masets, Rockclimbing, Siurana