Thursday, July 18, 2013

The Frankenjura experience

Hello everybody,
the first leg of the trip is over :) after spending three nights in Prague a set of events brought me to Bavaria in southern Germany. I met up with my friends, Klemen and Ema, who were kind enough to give me a short introduction to the Frankenjura!

The Jura is a historic climbing area which was the birthplace of the redpoint and the playground of climbing heroes such as Wolfgang Gullich, Kurt Albert and many others. Back in the 1980's and 1990's it was here that limits were pushed with ascents such as Wall street and most notably, Action Directe.
The place is well known for it's hard, bouldery style. Most of routes are comparatively short and climb on pockets of all sorts.
The area is very big and spread into many small sectors or Wande, as they call them.
It is definitely not like other big, popular areas. Whoever comes to Frankenjura should be ready to have a few days of adapting to the style. Myself I'm not strong in bouldering in any case so I settled with an ascent of Master Blaster, 10-/10 which translates to a French 8a+. Klemen, who has stayed here for two weeks, has racked up some nice ascents including some 'zehnte grade' -  a proper French 8b.

My short stay was awesome nonetheless. I got a taste of the area which makes me psyched to return and stay for longer. The place is full of history, the landscape is beautiful, and it's not as populated as some other crags, which gives it a bit of a mysterious feel... the amount of hard routes in the hidden crags scattered through the forest will keep you busy for a lifetime (unless you're Adam Ondra or Alex Megos... or Markus Bock). And when I will master the climbing here it will be a big improvement to my overall performance. The hard routes are just relentless, brutal pulling on bad pockets. The easy ones, though, often have some really nice rock and moves. And there's one more thing - there's no unnecessary bolts. Easy ground, even if the route is hard, will have only that much of protection to save you from decking. But it's just another thing you have to get used to.
me in Master Blaster, 10-/10 (8a+ in French grades)

Klemen got really close to this freakin' brutal grade 10 (8b) called Morlock Shocker... pure FJ style

the typical FJ scene

My summer trip is continuing in France. I am headed towards Briancon where the Coup de Monde is on tomorrow. It should   be a lot of fun, like always, and I'm really looking forward to meeting some of my friends. After that we're off for some hardcore climbing in the area with Jakob, Dominik and Anja. I'm psyched for a real rock climbing chapter :) the travelling so far has been awesome though - hitching, couchsurfing and all...I met a bunch of friendly people who were keen to help me out on the way. It's been a great learning experience - there's so many people out there who share a mutual experience and thinking. It's all about staying open and keeping a positive attitude - this can really get you anywhere :)

I'm excited about the forthcoming weeks and psyched for some hard ascents. Hopefully there will be a report on that soon, so stay
tuned. Thanks for reading people! Enjoy your holiday wherever you may be :) and once again thanks to Ema, Klemen and all the kind people I met along the journey :)

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