Fontainebleau…….The sun on our backs, playing in the forest with friends.

It’s a fabulous feeling to be doing the things you enjoy, with the people you enjoy doing them with. Today was not really that different to any other day. We were out for a walk in the forest with some friends and enjoying the morning discussing how things had been going for each other over the last couple of months since we had last met.

Looking around for the Elephant……

Well, maybe a little different………we were in Fontainebleau!!!!! We were wandering through L’elephant sector checking out all the classic boulder problems of the area. It was such a great thing to do. The weather was not that great but the rain had stopped early this morning and we all needed a bit of a walk and it also helped our friends to loosen up the city minds they were carrying with them.

Thierry showing some of the classic French style require to send in the forest……..:- Photo Karine Hitchcock 2017

Saturday the weather was a little average and the intermittent showers sort of slowed us down a little, but we got out to Sector 95.5 (named for its altitude above sea-level). We climbed a few of the routes there and had a great deal of fun watching Viviane and Jean-Jacques complete their first boulders in the forest. A wonderful thing to see and have them experience.

Sunday was a little more inspiring with the weather being a little cooler but spectacular none the less. We returned to one of the first sectors we ever went called Roche aux Sabots in the Trois Pignons area. We decided to do the “Circuit Orange” from the beginning and did about ten of the problems and the we did ten of the “Circuit Bleau”.

The entourage making a b-line for Roche aux Sabots Sector. (L to R) Catherine, Karine, Viviane and Jean-Jacques leading the way.

Thierry, Karine and I tried a few of the blue problems and a couple of them took more than one attempt to send. You quickly forget the numbers here and simply work out how the solution works for you. Fontainebleau has a habit of humbling the most experienced and committed of climbers.

I had been watching this young British guy working this problem and thought….I’ll give it a go. After a couple of attempts, I found the solution that worked for me. And just as I reached the top and began to mantle up over on to the top of the boulder, my foot slipped and I plummeted back to earth from about four and half metres up. I missed the pads completely and landed a little heavy on my feet. Scared me a little, but I checked myself out and there was no damage. I found the solution on the second attempt and finished on top of the boulder.

Thierry taking care of me on my send after I hit the ground the first time….:- Photo Karine Hitchcock 2017.

Thinking it might be time for a rest, Thierry suggested we join the others for lunch and we setup our picnic blanket and proceeded to dine on chicken, Boudin sausage, cheese, baguettes and some fresh fruit.

Contentment is hanging out in the forest………

The sun on our backs, playing in the forest with friends and the air a little fresh made for a great meal in a truly beautiful place. It was a great afternoon out and a wonderful weekend in the forest.


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