My rest days are a great opportunity to concentrate on photography. I photographed Laurent and Audrey on a 7b+. Walked ot to top of Mt Gaussier and played around with my new 70-200mm f.28 L series lens. 🙂
Another day on Mt Guassier we jumped on some long 6a+’s and 6b’s. Bit of a body shock to be climbing some steeper stuff as the majority of Orgon is slab climbing. The routes were a bit crumbly and unfortunately Audrey Seguy caught a fragment of rock in her eye. She decided to take no more chances, the sun glasses were on and even her hat with half of it pulled over her left eye. Thankfully Laurent saw the fragment in her eye and extracted it. So all is well.
A fantastic crag with 40m routes from 6a to 7a. The shortest being the 7b (15meters) and I am please to say that I got my first clean 7b redpoint of the trip. A very powerful technical route where foot work is crucial.
The route was on Mont Gaussier, a really inspiring piece of rock with fantastic views.
Today all the locals came out to climb at their local stomping grounds, in this case Le Canal.
Not only was there climbing but also lots of fishing in the canal. The 3 portraits are of fishermen who did not fish all day. they sat and drank wine and cheese all day while spectating the climbing. My limited french and hand gestures secured me these portraits. Also amongst these shots are some social shots of our group out on the trip. More people have joined us today so I hope to create some portraits.
Aka – The Shermanator. Laurent on the 7a+. Long steep pumpy route with a thin technical crux at the very top. A 25ft whipper awaits you if you don’t make the chains to finish.
While I am out here in France I am trying to capture the atmosphere of climbing and camping. Just taking photos of climbing in action can become a bit tedious, so here are a few attempts of ‘lifestyle shots’. Its something I am still working on so hopefully as the trip advances I will have stronger photos.
As the title says – because I couldn’t place the last quick draw, on the crux, Sam Harvie ended up taking a whipper, all because I didn’t place the quickdraw. Hands up in the air I should have climbed harder and completed the route, but it’s all taken in good banter. The only casualty of the event was my packet of crisps – burst open when Laurent was belaying Sam. The crisps were promptly devoured by Sam while I was attempting the route. It was my punishment apparently.
So we nicknamed this route ‘It’s Piers’ fault!”
Sherman Contest – 7a+
Sam Harvie on a very steep (it’s in a cave) 7b+ high above the campsite we are staying in for the next 2 weeks.
I have now moved further south to Orgon where the climbing is vast. Finished today with a 70m 6b+ to 6a+ to 6a – we had to do it in two pitches. It was brilliant climbing.
Earlier in the day before the midday heat we went Sikamol crag where I was photographed on the route name after the crag. The photo will be the main opening photograph for the Orgon climbing section. I hope to be able to get a copy of the photo and show it here.
After my five minuted of fame I decided to shoot Sam on a similar route. Here they are below.
I am now in the Ardeche, France helping with the photography for a Rockfax guidebook. The first day I climbed, to help me get a feel for the rock. Its hard steep stuff here and the French sure do like their long routes. The shortest so far has been 35 meters. My 60m rope has been made redundant already.
My main aim for this trip is to come away with a body of work about climbing, camping and guidebook writing. After a disheartening morning because I was not in the right frame of mind for climbing and failing miserably on a 6b+, I turned the day round by concentrating on photography. It’s hard to shoot when we are climbing in the shade all day and the vistas in the background are in bright sunlight. Trying to get a shot of a climber in the shade with the background exposed correctly is proving tricky. But I do have a month to practice.
So I resorted to silhouettes: