This time in english (even if it is bad, but my german is also not that good, so there is almost no difference)
I asked Katinka to write a bit on my blog, to get an other point of view, by someone who is here too.
First her impressions:
Spanish climbing routine, international socializing and lots of (n)ice cream
The other day Martin asked me if I´d like to write part of his blog, so that’s why it is written in English and from my point of view.
So, we arrived in Rodellar (Spain) about three weeks ago and to me it feels as if we’ve been here way longer. We totally got into ‘some kind’ of Spanish routine. Some kind, in that we just took over some good Spanish climbing habits and left out the bad ones. This means we rest a lot more than we are used to between different attempts in a route, we eat a lot of fresh fruit and we encourage everyone by shouting: “venga bicho” and “ a muerte”. We furthermore learned how to sleep our way through a rest day. Not that we really have another option… because there is nothing else to do. And we are usually so tired from climbing that we don’t want to move at all. Climbing in Rodellar namely means full body climbing, with guaranteed sore muscles the next (few) day(s). However, we differ from real Spanish climbers in that we usually arrive at the crag around 11 o’clock (instead of 7 in the evening) and that we walk from campsite "El Puente" (2 km walk. First up hill to get to Rodellar and than down to get to the rocks) to get there (okay, I have to be honest, last week we didn’t have to walk because we could drive along with other people). We furthermore differ in that we not smoke after every try in a route (men, all Spanish seem to smoke) and that our basic level is not 8c (yes, a lot of really strong climbers over here).
Because Martin is working as a waiter in the restaurant of El Puente (it is funny to see a fat German walking around with a blue apron and a tray :P) every evening, I usually spend my evenings socializing with different people I meet at the crag or on the campground. In the first week I met a nice couple from England, Nick (still wonder what a alpinist/tradclimber is looking for in Rodellar. ( nicks page) and Katy. I´ve furthermore spend some evenings climbing with Kate, a nice chick from Australia. And when I´m in to pancakes with Nutella (we actually ate more than pancakes) I visit Rachel, Tom and Matt on the Mascun campground. Where I was kind of scared I may be bored in the evenings, I’m actually having not enough time to hang around with everyone. Rodellar furthermore seems to be the place for ‘professional’ travelers in that a lot of people are just traveling and climbing. They work a few weeks/months a year and the rest of the time they are just climbing. It is really interesting to hear how they spend their time and I think I start to belief that it is somehow possible to just “leave” everything behind and climb (which doesn’t mean I’m explicitly interested in doing so).
For my climbing level it has been a really good trip so far. We ate lots of (n)ice cream (a new term we learned from Alberto, a Venezuelan co-worker of Martin and climbing buddy if Martin has to work), which means that different personal records are killed by both Martin and me. However, in the next two weeks it will be difficult to earn (n)ice cream, because Martin has to climb 8b than or I have to climb 7c. But, we will see ! So far, I’ll finish by saying that I always said I (only) like small crimps, but here I actually fell in love with tufas. No more crimpy routes for me, just big holds and crazy tufas!
(thats how spanish climbers use to call other europeans climbers here.Iit is easy to see who is a gidi:
1: climbing in the sun during the heat.
2: those peolpe climb mainly in the sun at midday
3: any other haircolor as black is called blond anyway
4: look like a loobster because they are burnt
3 weeks ago, we arrived in Rodellar. Shorts, shirts or no shirts. Doesn`t matter. It is hot from the first day on. When we left germany or/and netherlands it was cold and wet, but from all the posts on social media pages we know that is hot right now. I don`t think it is bad. At least no snow or rain!
The first week we got used to the heat. Every evening a litte thunderstorm helps a lot. Against the heat, the sweat, flies and makes it a lot easier to sleep at night. Eventough the nights are cool and the temperature is almost perfect for good sleeps after a day in the heat.
The days in the crags a hard for us. Getting up between 8 or 9 to climb during colder conditions. Wake up, breakfast, wash und grab our climbing stuff, run up to Rodellar (20 minutes) from there down again to the climbing areas. 40 minutes later... it is possible to climb!
The climbing here is mostly long, steep, powerful and makes you feel weak. 3 or 4 good attempts with this heat and you `re done for the day. Getting used to the climbing is easy for us in a way.
I don`t like small holds. I`m fat anyway (heavy) and I like powerful climbing in overhangs.
For Katinka it is almost the same.... almost! She likes small holds. Is kind of heavy (not really but tall and that makes you heavy. I hope she will understand it) and she likes climbing kind of faces or slab. Rodellarstyle... NOT!
But it is okay. She is starting to like it.
Every evening we`re wasted and we WANT to go for a swim or sleep to recover, but it is different. After climbing Katinkas hangs out with some friends (there are a lot of new friends) or is doing other social things and I`m doing my best in the restaurant as a waiter. French, spanish, dutch, german, english... it is a mess. Switching to different languages and not knowing the food I`ve to serve, but in works for me. Between 12 and 1 I go to bed and sleep. Next morning getting up early and climbing again. It will be hard to climb like this for some month, but we`ll see.
We`re never alone in the crack. Everyday you meet new climbers to climb with and talk to. Or we go climbing with some climbers that work here on the campground. But there is a problem climbing with many climbers here:
Everytime we climb a new personal record, something that never happend before we have to treat icecream to the climbers we are climbing with. We like to call it nicecream now and we already had some nicecream. Katinka is crushing. First day she onsighted her first 7a+. Two weeks later she onsighted her first 7b. One week ago she climbed her first 7b+ (till today she climbed 2 more!)
I onsighted my first 7c+.
Nicecream all the time and everywhere. Could be a reason why we`re not loosing weight, which is quiet normal on climbing trips. Now it will be hard to earn some more nicecream. Katinka wants to climb a 7c and I want to climb a 8b. In both cases hard, but we`re going for it and enjoying the days here!
another post will follow just with pictures!