Thursday, 6 January 2011

Photo Shot...

The road back to Margalef seemed long and slow, but eventually we found the Refugi, and soon after sleep found us. With the last day dawning clear and blue, we had many options for places to climb, but settled on the easy choice of Laboratory as unfinished business is a strong lure. For those that don’t know the Laboratory I will give you a quick run down...

Its very short, less than 20m, and steep, very steep, except at either end where it becomes very very steep. It is predominantly climbing on pockets, which are usually fairly good, except from the ones that are not, and are always covered in chalk. This means that it is usually possible to get a good idea of the route before even leaving the floor, and so a pretty good place for onsighting.

The left hand end of the cliff is home to the famous roof routes of Darwin Dixit and Demencia Senil, but nestled in amongst its more well known brothers is a route called Photo Shot. At 8b, Photo Shot is the cheapest of the routes in this sector, but since I have been called a scrooge on more than one occasion; it seemed like a good place to start my onsight bidding.

There isn’t really much to say about the actual ascent... apart from it went pretty well. I luckily chose the right holds at the right time, and after a short time found myself at the top. Something that is worth mentioning however is the holds on the route! Unlike a lot of the other routes in Margalef, and this sector particularly, they are not too painful. A welcome surprise, and one to seek out...

Onsighting Photo Shot, 8b in the Margalef Laboratory

After lowering off Photo Shot, I felt pretty energized and half decided to jump on an amazing 8b+ (sorry, I forget the name) a little to the left. Eventually, I decided to leave it for another visit as you only ever get the chance once, and to spend my last remaining energy on Ley Innata. It was a very good call not to try the 8b+ because I turned out to be pretty tired, and after one of the biggest fights of the trip just to claim my quickdraws back, the only thing left was the drive back home.

Next time I will be back on the Grit!

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