Just arrived in the Chamonix valley for a week’s Alpine hit. Dodgy weather when we arrived on Tuesday, but an on time flight and speedy car pickup left us with a few hours to kill, so we found the nearest crag and managed 4 pitches before the rain arrived.
La Pierre a Voix is certainly worth another look in better weather…
Wednesday is dry, but looking unsettled, so we steer clear of the big hills and instead choose a multi-pitch adventure further down the valley above Cluses.
Maladiere might be a “roadside crag” in as much as it overlooks the A40, but it’s about 1000m above it! You access the climbing via a 2 mile hike to the top followed by 5 abseils. There’s no way out downwards – the only way is up!
We chose Indiana Jaune – a 10 pitch Michael Piola masterpiece. Amazing climbing up a huge ramp line that cleaves the cliff. This has been recently rebolted and intriguingly also “dépatinée” ! De-polished! Sounds like a miracle cure… I was curious to say the least.
It turns out that Piola has smeared a bit of resin Sika over some of the more shiny holds, and I have to applaud the effort. Seems to work. I wonder if he fancies taking on Stoney?
Anyway, great route and great exposure.
Happy to top out in about 3 1/2 hours.