Wednesday 29 July 2020

Ecrins 2020: Wednesday and Thursday: Rest

[Notes : Arrival : Ref des Bans : Lac d'Eychauda / Pic du Rif

A lovely quiet day just sitting on the patio, enjoying the general ambience, reading (Popper for me, Plato for E,  Bessel van der Kolk  for D) and of course on our phones. Practice Prusiking (although technically we're not using Prusik knots, rather an autoblock or Marchand knot), since we'll be doing some abseiling in the upcoming days, and I feel guilty that the infants are not properly trained. Fortunately Victor, being a guide, has put bolts into the ceiling.


At 5, up to Ailefroide to the familiar Secteur 8 Orage d'Etoiles. I climb the 4b. D has a go top-roping the next door 5c since we can use my lead as a convenient toprope but it is rather thin and he bounces off. I have a quick go for form's sake and bounce of even quicker.

Then E and D try setting up abseils off the second bolt off the ground; high enough to be scary and take it seriously, low enough to be survivable, and commentable. We're slightly abusing our sling. It's a useful shakedown exercise.


After try to eat at the "Poulet Roti" type place but it is post-8 and their cuisine est ferme. So down to Pelvoux and the Glacier Blanc, where E and I went two years ago, and in whose garden-with-fountain I sat two years before that.



Thursday: another rest day. Don't worry, we'll get up and do something tomorrow. Hot and torpid in the morning and midday. Towards late pm we roused ourselves to go look at Secteur 7A up at Ailefroide. Sadly by the time we got up there it was raining. We sat (inside, beckoned by waiter) in the Engilberge for a few hands, before the rain stopped and we headed out again.


Where we were aiming for was not quite as obvious as it could have been. This GPS track (from later) will show you the way, complete with pix. Start from the "sauf riverains" track just by the bridge. Then when you get to the field with the apiary...

IMG_20200730_180156 want the left hand corner. For our evening meal we walked down to the pizza place over the river, which despite looking somewhat el cheapo was decent. Their 40" pizzas were quite large; E was sane and had a 33".


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