Let us explore the Dauphine
We want to go to a place where the temperatures are comfortable for climbing even in summer: To the Dauphine. In the Brianconnais we warm up for the mountains of the Ecrins massif.

Climbing at least a few routes

10.08.2020-11.08.2020 -The first day is not starting well: The chosen climbing area Le Sapet was closed this year and when we start climbing in the area Paroi des Militaires heavy rain sets in. A bit frustrated we continue our trip to Les Ayes.

We get up early to climb a few routes before it gets too hot in the sun or it starts raining again. The climbing area Les Ayes turns out to be a very good choice, even if every now and then a hold was glued back in place. Great routes, a creek and a small forest right next to the climbing area and it stays dry until the late afternoon.

Overnight stay: N 44.9071, E 6.6634 (Briancon)

Overnight stay: N 44.832157, E 6.654567 (Les Ayes)

En avant la zizique on the Pointe de Droite

12.08.2020 - The route En avant la zizique (6a+, 12 pitches) on the Pointe de Droite in the Groupe des Tenailles de Montbrison is simply very beautiful. The approach to the face is easy, the route is well protected with bolts and the climbing is varied. The slabs have some structure and the cruxes are in slightly steeper rock with cracks. Since we set off early, we can climb in the sun at pleasant temperatures all the time. Only rappelling is a bit exhausting.

Overnight stay: N 44.8623, E 6.5594 (Groupe des Tenailles de Montbrison)

Overnight stay: N 44.8408, E 6.5770 (Les Traverses et la Vignette)

Engats aux Arcas

14.08.2020 - It has been raining heavily most of the night. Therefore, we choose the south facing route Engats aux Arcas (6b variant, 16 pitches) on the Pointe des Arcas to get used to the climbing in the Ecrins massif. The approach takes a little longer than planned because we cross the dry creek too late. The first pitches are still in the shade and we have to climb with cold fingers. After that the climbing is really great and partly quite steep. We choose the 6b variant with the great cracks, which require technique and strength, over the 5c variant. A good choice. While climbing we witness a big rockfall at the Glacier Noir. It is really impressive to watch a whole section of the wall collapsing, leaving only dust behind. At the top of the route we stay a little while longer. The view is just too beautiful and the temperatures too pleasant. We even have mobile reception up here and can update the weather reports.

Overnight stay: N 44.9171, E 6.4154

Lessons Learned

  • The higher you dare to go, the better the view.
  • There is no mobile reception after Ailefroide, except in certain routes.
Written by Barbara