Tuesday, 27 October 2015

Orpierre in the Fall

Climbing in the gorge at Sisteron

A rest-day walk - high above Orpierre
After a very pleasant three weeks in Briançon we loaded up the cars and drove a steady two hours to arrive at the fabled Orpiérre - another well known climbing destination that had escaped my attention completely over the years. The reason for its fame, and the associated downsides soon became all to apparent, a) it was busy - really busy, b) the cliffs were packed, c) a lot of the routes were horrible polished. It also turned out we had arrived at the start of the busiest 10 days in the whole year; the place is too hot in the summer, too cold in the winter and ‘just right’ around October half term!
I guess the place is a victim of its own success - the number of 'live-in' wagons in the various car-parks and many really large groups of climbers spoil the place for us a bit - though the answer is to visit at another time, like we have learnt to do with Kalymnos.
Any way, it is a lovely spot and with a bit of dodging around we managed to get plenty of climbing done, around Orpiérre and a little further afield.
Sadly the camp-site shuts for the winter this weekend and we are being ejected from our cosy (and quite posh) caravan - so the question has to be - where next?

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