Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Swiss sportsclimbing

We bailed out of Val di Mello.
Why? Rain and snow...
We drove down and guessed trad and Alpine climbing would be over for the next week(s).
But suddenly the Swiss forecast changed and we 'ran' to Bondo. Once in Bondo it rained, Piz Badile covered in clouds and when we called the hut they told us it was all wet and snowy :(
So we drove on and found a little sportsclimbing crag. (Plaun da Lej) Not too bad we thought, and could easily spent some days on the sharp, rough limestone there.
The routes can be compared to climbing in Freyr (Belgium) but all is still rough and feels 'fresh' on your fingers.
We felt strong and found it funny step into the hardest route of the area 'Antrax' an short 8a with a boulder in the start.
We were quite fast figuring all the moves except from the start. So we guessed the start must be hard. And it was. Looking, feeling, looking again, insecure...I sort of found a way to do it. Wasn't sure yet and had to put my 'engine' on full power to stick the moves. Did it on toprope and just actually did it. All in once. Hûh, all in once, 8a? I had to get on lead, straight away. Dennis tried first, found it hard too... I pulled out the rope, got on the moves and stuck it again! But, after the crux I slipped away and fell. Shit, almost did it, stupid feet!
And again, I went into the route and finally did it. Even crossed over with my wrong hand after the crux but could fix it easily and climbed easy on to the top.
8a, finally! Dennis climbed it as well, his first 8a!
Too bad we don't have any proper pictures of the ascents. It's quite hard to belay and photograph at the same time...
For two days more we climbed there tried some more beautiful and/or hard routes and finally figured our fingers were too tired to hold on. Today is restday day, we both feel our fingers, arms, shoulders and I even feel the muscles in my chest and tummy :)
Hopefully the weather will change and will give us a chance on the Piz Badile, Piz Bernina and other high mountains with cool trad lines like the Cassin on the Piz Badile...

Here the little movies that didn't want to upload...not the best but it gives a view on what we've done in Friedrichshafen and Val di Mello.
The Plaun da Lej video soon :)

Friday, July 22, 2011

Val di Mello

After a couple of days in Friedrichshafen it was time to head for the Alps.
Too bad thats it's raining everywhere...
Two days ago we woke up with snowy mountains all around. One of the locals told us he hadn't seen this much snow in July in 32 years!
Hopefully it will get better in the next weeks.
Today is restday because I slipped when walking down from a climb. Luckily nothing really bad, it was just bleeding a lot: my ear. Actually it's all fine now so I can climb again tomorrow :)
The climb we did was the classic of the area Luna Nasciente. max. 6b+ but with a 'rope solo' 3a pitch on a slab and all on trad. Too bad for us, it started raining when we were in the 6th pitch. So I was forced to lead the 3a slap in the rain! The wall changed from solid friction into one big waterfall. Luckily we made it to the top and we able to walk down over the slippery paths...
Before this adventure we had one day of bouldering (Val di Mello is famous of bouldering) and we tried to find the route with the vague topo. We walked for 6 hours in total and really didn't get it where the right path was supposed to be... We climbed some vague unrated single pitch and as it was already past 5 we decided to bail and go back to our free campsite in San Martino. Luckily we had more good charms around us yesterday. We found the right path and the route.
Restday means laptop charging/internet/movie/wash-day. Dan that's exactly what we do right now. Though all works pretty slow and I don't have too much time. Meaning I just uploaded a movie without music...sorry! I'll refine the thing as soon as possible.

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Climbing times :) Finally

Sorry, something went wrong with getting this post online.
I just lost all my text and pictures.
So here agin. Shortly.
1. I'd been working. A lot. For a couple weeks I was just working, sleeping, eating, working and if I was lucky I had some time to climb. Frustrating, but I knew I had a goal: climbing. Finally some money to have a outdoor climbing chance. Even enough to go abroad for a whole month!
2. And that's what we just did. We drove off with our fixed van and are already in Austria. One day after the Messe (Fair) in Friedrichshafen. The 'Out Door' is the biggest outdoor fair of the world and the place to be as 'gear-freak'.
3. With success we went to the fair. Results: a new spork, I won the Teva wake-skate design competition, new 5.10 shoes, met these really cool 5.10 people (thanks Ivo, Charles, Bryan...) had such nice talks in Icelandic with 66 North, Cintamani and Fjallakofinn, saw the best backpack ever in the Crux stand, tried the new Petzl micro Traxion, lost all my businesscards (on purpose) to all new people I met, discusses new ideas for fruitboots with 5.10 and Petzl, I talked to Trango (nice girl) and got a top of Stone designs, figured the only and best clothing sponsor ever is Patagonia and best and coolest and most AMAZING of all: Dennis and I 'decided' to go to the Petzl Roc Trip in China!
4. Hey guys, you can actually all go to the Petzl Roc Trip, even when you're not a Chris Sharma or Daida, you're still welcome. The're over 250 routes bolted varying from 6a to 9b. Something for everyone. Sweet!
5. Now it's raining :( And we're on a climbing the rain. Something that doesn't really match. We're drinking coffee in the MacDonalds, enjoying free internet and weather forecasts.
Where should we go? Val di Mello, Bernina, Ailefroide, Chamonix...? Any suggestions?

On the pictures: working last week (ziplines, climbing, belaying, on the road, homemade bread and Friedrichshafen)

Sunday, July 03, 2011

Viva & Arla

So cool!
I won, I won, yes, yes. I won a restyle of our beloved campervan.
A professional stylist would come and restyle our van and I got an interview with pictures of the restyle in Dutch magazine 'Viva'.
A month ago the team came over and did the restyle. A professional photographer took pictures. New cushions, a plaid... And I was pretty excited about it. Arla, Scandinavian brand for diary products is new on the Dutch market and financed the restyle. So on the pictures you see some Arla yoghurt drinks and in the interview we focused on food and natural things fitting with the image of Arla. Though, it also fits me, so nothing in the interview is twisted or faulty.
This week the magazine is in the shops.

Fat children

I was thinking...what title should I give this post.
And actually 'work, climbing' is actually all I do these days and yes, a bit more: studying (sometimes).
Yesterday I was working for Outdoor Westvoorne, my favourite outdoor sports company in the Netherlands ;) I was belaying kids, all day. On a campsite in the province called Zeeland (Sealand, down SW, close to the Belgian border)
And sometimes I wonder...why are all this kids so fat? Whats wrong? I'd been doing researches for my studies and every time I found that kids are getting fatter and fatter. With fat I mean not just a bit heavy, but having a 'blubber' tummy, legs that have their own rhythm when they try to run and arms that don't fit normal children's' watches as they're too thick.
What went wrong? What's up with all these parents? Don't they realise that when their 8 year old child tries to run they're actually slower then a 3 year old, that they waggle instead of run? Now with climbing it's worse, of course. They just can't get up the fairly easy wall. Some can't even see where they have to place their feet as their tummy is in the way.
Why, why parents, why?
They often have excuses, 'oh, I got a cramp in my arm', 'my leg is sore', 'it's too difficult', 'I'm scared of heights', 'you need to help me', 'pull, pull, Marianne, why don't you pull me up on the wall?'. But basically it's the lack of knowing how to move. Knowledge of how to get your body around on the wall.
Why, parents, why?
I think, having your child that fat is child abuse. And nobody ever dares to say that to a parent with a fat child. But I think we should tell them. It's getting worse every year. Children start to look like little pigs, being fed every hour, parents running around satisfying the ridiculous needs of a 'spoiled' (abused) child.
So sad...
So I always have a thing I tell children. It differs form day to day. It's always a compliment or encouragement, but today I had just one thing: girl/boy, you really should eat less candy and find a sports.
Sorry kids, couldn't help it, it was just so bad to see...
Today I tried to Google for a nice evening dinner and all I found was fat meat.
Now focus again on my vegetable garden and see if the carrots, tomatoes, broccoli, mais, pumkins, onions, leek and all other little plants are doing. :)
Enjoy your day. Fat free?
Oh, yes, you could expect a picture of a fat child, but I don't want to place a picture of an overweighted child on my blog as I find they can't help it. So just some vegetables here :)