Erik Massih Rotating Header Image

Summer wine 2011

South Face of Gloppepillaren where Oskar and I FFA:d the route Slipset (10 pitches A3 6+) 7b:ish free. Photo: Oskar Alexandersson

Oskar’s and my trip to the greater ranges had to be cancelled for different reasons so we opted for a shorter and slightly less exotic road trip instead. Here’s a recap from our little outing.
Bohuslän
The first pit stop for this little roadtrip was Bohuslän on the west coast of Sweden mainly to attend two of my best friends, Stefan’s and Maja’s wedding and to pick Oskar up at his summer cottage. Martin Leidebrant and I drove from Stockholm had a short day on one of the newly developed sports crags in the area, Smålinden and spent the better part of the day falling off the main line on the face. Next day was route setting at Stefan’s and Maja’s bouldering wall for the Lindal Masters comp and then cranking plastic and drinking beer with a heard of Monkeys.
Saturday was wedding time and Maya and Stefan said yes to each other, ander after that it was PARTY TIME!

So, when we eventually sobered up from the wedding we had to decide, where to? Northern Norway, Western Norway or Switzerland? Yr.no made the decision for us. Western Norway! …and so we headed towards Norway in the VW-van.

Oskar, Christian Koch and Erik Nordbye heading out to Kjerag

Kjerag

It’s quite a while since I was in Lysebotn. Last time was in ’99 when Mårten Blixt and I on a rest day from sports climbing in Sirdal climbed a variation to Nordostpassagen that at least I refer to as Flänsostpassagen ca 900m 7/7+. It turned out to be not so much of a rest day since we spent the better half of the following day sleeping. A good route to do in wet conditions and we swore to never ever again climb a “passage”.

Oskar and I racked and packed for Kjerag in ca 10 minutes this time. Oskar was in charge of packing lunch. Half a pack of Wasa, three cans of mackerel in tomato sauce, 300 grams of chocolate, a quarter of a kilo of assorted candy and half a bag of potato chips should be enough for a day of climbing (what was he thinking?). I packed ropes, two fat 60 m singles (What was I thinking?). We shared a boat ride with Erik Nordbye whom I hadn’t seen in 11 years or something, damn time flies, and Christian Koch to Geitanaeset. In the end we didn’t climb that much; after 7 pitches of wet cracks and pulling on gear on sixes we figured we’d had enough and rapped down (pretty glad we had two ropes, (good thinking, Erik) to the fjord hoping to catch a ride with some BASE-jumpers. Unfortunately it was too cloudy for them to lob themselves of the crag so we spent the better half of the afternoon feasting on our lunch (good thinking, Oskar) before getting picked up for a ride back in to “Botn”. Kjerag was just as vegetated as I remembered but wetter.

Kjerag, home of Jungleering!

Heading down towards the pot of gold at Geitaneset.

…and me on the way back in to Lysebotn

Yet another glory moment.

 

Sirekrok

It’s quite a while since I first visited Sirekrok. This little steep crag in Sirdal not far from Lysebotn was all the rage in ’96 when it was first being developed and when I first visited it. It was at Sirekrok I on sighted my first 7c, Mannen som fick lov att gå and many memories have stayed from that trip, such as being taught by Johan Luhr that one can fry onions in water instead of oil (isn’t that to boil them?). I’ve revisited Sirekrok a couple of times since then but this time I was slightly disappointed: it was a tad smaller and less steep than I remembered it but after our canyoneering experiences on Kjerag it was rather liberating to pull on jugs for a bit. We had two nice days of mostly repeating (deja vue) routes I’d done 15 years ago but also pulled of a quick repeat of Landslagsuttaket av 96  which I’d not done before. In all it’s a rather good crag worth a stop if you’re traveling through Rogaland. If you are in the area you should definitely go to some of the other crags in Sirdal and Hunnedalen as well.

Oskar fooling around on Landslagsuttaket…

Jug hauling on Landslagsutaket…

Camping up by the dam at Sirekrok

New friends.

 

Gourmet cooking delux

Dale

Someone once told me that if you can climb at Dale, you can climb anywhere. He could be right. Thin, long and technical face climbing with lots of climbing between the bolts forced me to focus, soooo good. Two days of being sandbagged by our host Stein Ivar getting up thin crimping on some of the crags classics and neo-classics. Hearing that many of the mega routes haven’t seen even a handful of repeats or attempts leaves me utterly baffled. Routes like Alvedans, Imperiet and Valhalla and are about as good as they get and I can honestly say that Ungdommens frelser and it’s neighbor are the best bolted 7a:s I’ve ever climbed.

Stein Ivar

Oskar climbing “Kiler for nerverna” at Dale. Ph: Stein Ivar Gravdal

Gloppedalen

When Oskar and I started up the hill from Byrkjesdal towards Gloppedalsura our expectations where quite low, or rather, we didn’t really have any. After rolling over the top of the pass, Gloppedalsura, which supposedly is the largest talus field in Norway, and they have a lot of talus, our minds where changed. Some of the walls blew our heads away. Why didn’t we know about this valley? One line that stood out on the prominent buttress on the south face was Slipset (A3 6+), a distinct 10 pitch crack line capped with a huge roof. Could it be free climbed? Oskar was positive and he was right. We free climbed the route at 7b in perfect weather. Sweet!

“NOOO, not Slipset”, was Stein Ivar’s response when he heard we had bagged his project in his back yard.

Gloppedalen North Face

 

Leading up the first A3 pitch on Slipset

 

Coming around the big roof formation on “Slipset” with no beard.

 

“Slipset”

Taking a celebration swim by the beach under the buttress we just climbed.

 

The steep Profilväggen in the back of the valley.

Profilväggen, Jössingfjord

OMG! What a wall! I guess I could spray superlatives over this wall till the cows come home.

Jössingfjord I probably best know for the cave, or Helleren as it’s called in Norwegian, hosting 20 routes between 7b and 8b. Climbing is unfortunately banned during summer because of the two old houses underneath which are some sort of tourist attraction, but it looks good and I wish we’d been there a couple of weeks later. Luckily Profilväggen was legal. This steep 80 m wall hosts a number of crack lines, of which as far as I know only two have been free climbed yet, Firefox at 8/8+ (7c) by Leo Holding and Neil Gresham and the other at 8+ (7c+) by Robert Caspersen. Most of the other lines have been climbed with aid so far. Oskar and I hopped on a super clean splitter line, Heksenatt (80 m A2 6)and thought we would bag it easily. We didn’t, not even close. After two days of work and two rolls of tape we had just barely managed do all the sequences and link more than 3 moves in row on this steep flared little number that swallowed mostly purple and green Camalots. Coming down from an intermediate anchor at 25 mtrs one would land 6-7 meters from the wall. This route is by far the best and hardest crack I’ve ever tried. So unforgiving! Must go back and If anyone reading this is psyched on steep and hard cracks, you have to go there.

Heksenatt on Profilväggen.

Helleren at Jössingfjord

 

Oskar doing a good job on struggling up one of the best crack climbs I’ve ever tried.

Comments are closed.