Climbing Roches d'Orvin

Eight of us headed for Roches d'Orvin on Sunday, a climbing area in Jura, one of the French speaking Cantons in Switzerland. It was a beautiful day for climbing, warm, but overcast so we were sheltered from direct sun.


I teamed up with Rafał and us two and Håvard and Tali initially stuck to the hardest crag in the area. Single pitch routes mostly in the 6-ish difficulty range, with one 7b+ route. Rafał sent most of them in short order and I tried to keep up. Worked OK-ish, although I did take a couple of lead falls and didn't flash the routes. My first fall in particular was annoying and caused some amusement for my onlookers. I had just successfully passed the crux and let out a loud sigh of relief and victory: "Finally!" when I suddenly slipped without warning and had to do it all over again. Just goes to show that you should pay attention at all times ;-)

Pro-tip: Do not celebrate yourself prematurely.

Rafał and I tried our hands on the 7b+ as well. Somewhat unsurprisingly we didn't really stand a chance. It was fun trying though and I guess as far as hard routes go this might be one of the easier ones. The difficulty is all in one or two boulder moves, the rest is trivial.

Me side-stepping the 7b+ crux to put in a top rope.
Rafał running up to the crux.

After exhausting most routes on this crag the four of us moved on and joined the others on the main section. The climbing here is easier but you'll be rewarded with multiple pitches and nice views. I always joke about our "Kamikaze Russian" Ivan. He's very enthusiastic and knows no fear. As a result most climbing days end with him bleeding. He didn't disappoint this time either. Taking a fall onto a ledge ripped his pants and earned him a nice bruise: "Bloody Ivan" indeed ;-)

Volodymyr pulling some moves.
Bloody Ivan is bloody.
Andrey packing up his trad gear.

At the end of the day we had been climbing for almost 8 hours with hardly a break. Great fun with a very international expedition - if you count my dual citizenship we had 8 people representing 8 nations.

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