Saturday, 28 January 2012

Rodellar by Jen Wilby

The first stop of our 2012 road trip is Rodellar. Some people called us crazy as it is known to be super cold and suffer from seepage in the winter. We arrived in Santander after a very interesting 36 hour ferry journey, which involved a mixture of pub quizzes and bingo amongst the ex pats heading back to Spain after the holiday season.

We saw nothing but blue sky and sun - until we hit Rodellar. Frost everywhere! We thought about turning back but we decided to see what the morning brings. We hit the jackpot! The last 16 days have been clear and crisp - perfect climbing conditions which is apparently very rare for Rodellar at this time of year! After adopting a car park as our casa, we were super psyched!

Rodellar is an amazing place, on the walk in from the village you see the Gran Boveda:

Gran Boveda

A phenominally steep crag with a mixture of Tufa's and face climbing.

being a superb route on the left hand side of the Boveda.

El Clan de los M'Klau 7b+

It starts with some steep jug pulling which comming from England managed to get me super pumped, onto a rest between tufa's. The crux involves comming around off a tufa then a bouldery couple of moves into a sharp pocket with a final unwind to a jug. Fantastic route!

Another fantastic crag is El Delfin

Its got a few of the best 6 grade lines here. At thi time of year it gets the sun, so it's an awesome place to warm up. The classic line here is El Delfin at 7c+. Its super steep with a cruz at the end - heart breaker!

Just to the left is another amazing sector called Las Ventanas. Another typical steep spanish crag with som phenominal lines. It also has some fun routes in the 7a to 7b range including:

Bis a Bis 7a

Canita Brava 7B

Juan y Fran se nos Van 7a+

These lines are great for getting some pulling power - good holds and large moves all the way.

El Camino is the first sector you arrive at if you take the alternative approach. It has routes from 6a to 7b which are shorter than the other sectors, but it is also very polished.

Rodellar village is quite a small place, but is has some great amenities. I can imagine its full of people in the summer so we have been very lucky to almost have the place to ourselves. There is a refugio open all year and the Valle De Rodellar, run by Fina the nicest Spanish lady I have ever met! Gracias Fina! It has a supermarket and bar open all year and Fina will teach you all the spanish you need to know. It also serves amazing cold cerveza for the end of a climbing day.

Van life is working out well, little food and lots of climbing seems to be working.

I would recommend Rodellar to anyone - the amount of starts you can see on a night is mind blowing.

I am having a few days rest now ready to move on to Catalunya at the start of Feb.

A Muerta and Happy Climbing.

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