Crocs mignons et vieilles dentelles
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Five slab-tastic pitches of fun, with a nice dihedral thrown in on pitch four for good measure. The right side of the crag was crawling with other parties when we arrived, but no one was on this climb on the left side. We thought it was a score.
P1: Follow the easy slab past frequent bolts to snake left above the first overhang and right below the next. French rating: 4c
P2: More vertical climbing and fewer bolts this pitch a little more interesting. French rating: 4b, but felt harder.
P3: Crux pitch. Sparsely bolted. A petit peu bold! French rating: 5b
P4: Dihedral pitch--short, but fun after the slabs. French rating: 5a
P5: Exit pitch over easy but mossy slabs to the chain atop the cliff. Belay off anchors, not the chains.
Left side of the Vallorcine crag. Look for a route that starts left of the overhangs and skirts between them to the right. According to the guidebook (Crag Climbs in Chamonix, by Francois Burnier and Dominique Potard), this is the left-most multipitch route, but once you're a pitch up, the routes branch and seem to go all over the rock. Take a topo if you don't want to accidentally end up on a 6a+ pitch.
Fully equipped, as they say in France, but the middle pitches are sparsely bolted. Next time I'd bring a small rack of stoppers, maybe some smallish cams to try to supplement the run-out sections.
Each belay station has a giant, single D-ring (popular anchor in this area) cemented into the wall.
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