Fasnia

On paper, Fasnia looked to be a good venue for us: a good mix of grades and the option of sun or shade in a fairly handy location. The guide warns that the approach track can be a bit dodgy (it certainly is!) but even parking before this it’s only a 5 minute walk. First impressions of the crag aren’t entirely favourable – the location is almost urban and the crag itself somewhat post-industrial, with a cluster of buildings, a small aquaduct, and even a disused narrow gauge rail track. Presumably it’s been quarried or mined at some stage

We pondered moving on to a different spot, but a combination of inertia and the hassle of choosing and getting to somewhere else resulted in a verdict of “let’s give it a go now that we’re here”.

This turned out to be a good move, as the climbing was much better than the aesthetic – solid basalt formed into really interesting shapes (presumably the remnants of huge crystal structures in the cooling lava?) Amazing contrast with yesterday’s bubbly rock at Los Naranjos, with hard and almost shiny surface favouring crimps and edges.

A criticism of the otherwise excellent guide is that it doesn’t have individual route lengths and there’s no star system, so it’s hard to make judgements without actually rocking up. Casting around the crag, the preponderance of chalk on a few of the routes provided a good proxy for stars.

We started off with La Communite, 6a, an unusual long diagonal line starting in a former watercourse (VERY polished) before easing significantly to fun flaky / blocky climbing. Here’s Tash nearing the top.

Tash and Leah both took advantage of a couple of easier bolt lines (many of the Vs have been left as trad lines throughout the island) for some leading – here’s Tash on La Morrallosa

… and she also led La Morralita, V.

Back in the main sector, Jake had warmed up on Cabeza de Perro, 6c+, with some really nice finger jams and layaways before what I discovered to be a tough final pull on a couple of crimps of disappointment.

Two further routes just left were also heavily chalked, with Tash and Jake drawing a handicap speed-climbing comp on La Visionarie, 6a, and Hotel Andorina, 7a respectively.

No 7a tick for me today 😦

After waiting (im)patiently for an Anglo-German team to siege El Pulpo te Quedo Crudo, 7b+, Jake put on a crimping masterclass to demonstrate how it should be done.

Meanwhile Tash and I did the outstanding and improbable Del Hoyo al Jolgorio, 6b+, which zigs and zags its way up the overhanging back wall via thin, tenuous slabby moves. Lots of fun.

Still time in the day for a team swim (I say “team” but someone had to miss out to take the piccie)

… Followed by a very fishy dinner a couple of km down the coast

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