After a great trip to Petrohrad in the Czech Republic, which is a beautiful granite bouldering area, I had a couple of days off then headed to the Pfalz in Germany.
Check my UKC Article on Petrohrad.
The Pfalz is a really cool sandstone place in the west of Germany, close to the border of France. I had my eye on a classic UIAA 9+ called Magnet Finger. It used to be a F7c, but the holds have deteriorated and it is now considered to be F7c+.
After a couple of warm ups on some easier stuff, it was my turn to put the draws in Magnet Finger and give it a go. The draws went in fine, (I’d been told it was dangerous – erm – there’s bolts every 1.5 metres!) and I thought I’d have it first redpoint.
Went for it, got to the crux and heard a loud crack as my finger pulley snapped. BUMMER!
The route is a really stunning steep arete and actually climbs like an arete too – very gritstone-esque. It’s pretty bouldery, with only really 5 hard moves in the middle. It was first climbed as an aid line, mainly on the ring bolts, before big Wolfgang came and freed it in the 1980’s.
It is a total classic and would suit any British visitors, being short and technical.
Check this video of James Pearson and Gaz Parry doing it on their trip round Europe:[vimeo http://vimeo.com/4705503 w=600&h=338]
So it is another season of injury recovery for me.
I’m off to France next week for a photographic trip in the south, to take pictures for a forth coming guidebook. I won’t be doing any climbing as the finger hurts too much.
I am following Dave MacLeod’s excellent advice at the moment:
Finger Injury Treatment Videocast
And after this I think I’ll be sticking to the running and easy trad routes for a while – just like last year.
Last year I managed to improve both my mental climbing and my crack technique due to having a finger injury.
This year I will concentrate on my flexibility and cardio fitness. There is always something to train!
Email: Jack.geldard ( at) gmail.com