Gietroz, sector Pylon

The somewhat utilitarian name belies an excellent little crag. Gietroz is the easterly extension of Barberine and has a bunch of sectors scattered over the hillside. Pylon is just over the border into Switzerland – immediately after the border post (less than 50m) take a left turn for Gietroz that weaves up the hill and over the train track, take the right fork immediately after the bridge and park in a gravel covered area next to some brightly coloured bee hives and a blocked off tunnel. N46.051890, E6.947436. It’s a steep and winding 10 minutes approach from here, up a faint path right of the tunnel via an awkward hop onto a large boulder then a vague leafy trail up and left through huge boulders and between an apartment-block-sized boulder and the crag…

… then more mulch bashing including a short fixed rope before finally emerging beneath the crag. There’s a fixed rope running across the bottom of this and not a huge amount of room at the base (and a 100ft drop if you step backwards!) Cosy but friendly with the 3 teams there. Here’s a local having a hard time on Honey Badger 6b+ or 6c depending which source, and probably worth 6c+ – He ended up bailing near the top and leaving a couple of crabs that I had the pleasure of retrieving for him. I’d probably have bailed myself, if it hadn’t been for a bit of peer pressure, but pleased I persisted and got it clean.

There are only a dozen routes in all, from 5c to 7a, and we did half of them between us. All excellent, with La Belle Zig an outstanding 5c up a magnificent juggy crack, and Banane Direct, 6a+/b up a series of left trending flakes…

… being particularly recommended.

With the sun disappearing off the crag at around 4ish we abandoned play to put in a brief appearance at The Office

… Someone’s got to!

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