We’ve been on a roll, since coming down from the Dolomites. On the last climb up in the Dols (Punte Wundt) I looked over to the right and realized that there were icicles in the route, it was that cold. It was time to leave!

Here’s the count since we arrived in Arco:

1.Parete San Paolo. Le Cenglia Rossa. 7 pitches. This route was extremely slippery with the passage of climbers. It might have been beautiful once, but no more. It was well-protected but the grades in the guideboolk were rather far fetched. I usually don’t have to pull on draws in a 5a, but there were a few spots that there was just no other way to move. There was a lot of noise from the road. Not a wonderful memory.

2. Picolo Dain. Limaro Wand : Moonbears. 10 pitches. We wanted to do a different climb but started up the wrong route. We realized that the grades and the route description didn’t match, but climbed on anyway as it wasn’t too hard. There were 2 or 3 magnificent pitches here, and a few others that were pleasant. There was a ton of road noise again.

The 6a pitch of Moonbears

3. Monte Casale. Il Muro del Meridiani – Vorbau : New Entry. 4 pitches (plus we top roped a couple of pitches on the way down). This one took some finding. The approach had crappy ropes on bad rock and it was a bit nerve wracking to get to the start. The climb was beautiful, though, and the road was far enough away that we weren’t bothered by noise.

4. Il Piazzolo: 4-5 single pitch climbs before the rain started. This site is “new”ish. The rock seems to be a conglomerate in parts, but the rest is a soft limestone that doesn’t seem to get too slippery. I tried a 6b+ that no one seems to like, apparently, I think because it’s not very gratifying for the grade. Everything is fantastically bolted so there’s no stress about trying harder climbs.

5. Mandrea: Ego Trip. This was an adventure! 10 pitches and two that are 6bs, so definitely harder than anything we’d done up until then. It was nice, for us. We topped out to a huge cloud hanging over us and only had to walk down in the rain. The other climbers in the cliff had to start belaying down. The climbs on this cliff weren’t really set up for that, so they must have left a lot of gear.

Pitch 3 of Ego Trip. No way to know that a few hours later, we’d be in a thunderstorm!

After that, we took a day off and went to Riva, and wandered around. The lake is beautiful.

A day off in Riva del Garda

6. Monte Colt: Perla Nera and Tredicesima Luna. These are four pitch climbs, so we did one, took a break, then did the other. Perla Nera was a bit slippery, but it wasn’t really bothersome. I got lucky with Tredicesima Luna because I got to lead the outstanding 3rd pitch. The road is quite far away so you don’t hear much while climbing.

7. Il Piazzolo: 3 single pitch climbs before the rain. I managed a 6b, which was the exploit of the morning.

So that’s seven days of climbing in eight days here. We rented an apartment this time and have been able to cook a bit more easily than we can when we’re camping. It’s been nice having a bed and to be able to wait out the rain in a comfortable spot.

Tomorrow, we’re leaving for Corsica. We already have an end date for that as my partner needs to get back to work for a few days. Then we’ll see where we go next!

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