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Spain in late March for easy 5.10 and hard 5.11 climbers


Varun Singh · · Providence, RI · Joined Jun 2015 · Points: 131

For a rental car for Tarragona and Montserrat, is a cheap economy-style sedan ok or is it worth springing for something with a bit higher clearance and more power?

Varun Singh · · Providence, RI · Joined Jun 2015 · Points: 131

Grant Kendrick 1 wrote:

I was at Montserrat in mid march a couple years ago and had a great time.  We took the train from Barcelona and bought combination train/cable car tickets to the monestary which were pretty inexpensive and made for a very easy trip and a fun, unique way to get to the climbing! From there hiked 45 minutes to the refugio where we were the only people there beside the caretaker.  There were guidebooks there and the caretaker knew the climbs well and was able to advise us.  The climbing is interesting and somewhat unusual--lower angle face climbing on pebbly conglomerate--but adequately bolted and very picturesque. We saw a few climbers in the distance, and a few hikers every day, but mostly had the place to ourselves.  Weather ranged from a little chilly if it was cloudy or windy to perfect when the sun was out.  If you end up there, I highly recomend taking a few hours to visit the church by the monestary, home to the Black Virgin statue.  I tried to talk my companion into skipping it and doing another climb, but was really greatful she insisted, as it was one of the most beautiful and spectacular churches I've ever seen, particularly in light of where it's located.

Have a great trip! 




Lena chita wrote:

I second ( third?) the Climb Tarragona guidebook. We stayed in Tarragona, and climbed in Siurana, Margalef, Montsant, Mont-ral, La Mussara, and Vilanova de Prades.
Tons of routes in the 10-11 range at all of these places, and climbing is somewhat different at all of these locations, so you definitely won't get bored!

Margalef and Montsant was limestone conglomerate vertical to overhanging, depending on the grade, with lots and lots of awesome pockets.
Siurana is more compact grey limestone, lots of crimps, at the 10-11 grade range this would be somewhat more polished, and it was my least-favorite place for the easier grades. The bolting on some of the easier climbs seemed more runout than the rest of the areas.
La Mussara had more crack climbing (bolted) and felt relatively stiff,grade-vise, but was really fun.
Prades would be vertical climbing at the grades you are looking for.
Mont-rall would be slabby black flowstone-type limestone.

For the easier grades, my personal favorites were Montsant, Margalef, and la Mussara. Harder climbing-- Siurana, Margalef, and Montsant.

Thanks guys! I ended up getting the Tarragona Climbs book and the Montserrat book. Planning on spending most of our time in the Tarragona area and popping over to Montserrat for some multi-pitch days.

Thank you all for the great advice. Looking forward to Margalef and Montsant

kck · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Jul 2015 · Points: 85
Mark Paulson wrote:

Can anyone speak to the climbing quality around Chulilla?  I'm flying in to Valencia with friends the last week of February, and will be climbing mostly in the 5.11-12 range...

I'd say Chulilla is vertical to slightly overhanging, long, endurance climbing. More fingery. The climbs are always fun and good quality. I had a good time. Plenty to do in the grades you specified.

kck · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Jul 2015 · Points: 85
Varun Singh wrote:

For a rental car for Tarragona and Montserrat, is a cheap economy-style sedan ok or is it worth springing for something with a bit higher clearance and more power?

I got an economy car and was fine even for Montsant. There are crags that don't go through that rough road. And even for those crags you can just park and hike a bit more if you don't feel comfortable driving.

Lena chita · · OH · Joined Mar 2011 · Points: 1,040
kck wrote:

I got an economy car and was fine even for Montsant. There are crags that don't go through that rough road. And even for those crags you can just park and hike a bit more if you don't feel comfortable driving.

+1. We had an economy car, and were fine. 

K-Tanz · · Phoenix, AZ · Joined Sep 2010 · Points: 205

Apologies for the slight hijacking, here, but can anyone recommend places to stay to meet other climbers? I am flying solo in early April and need to find some partners. My plan is Siurana but I am for sure flexible. Seems like the old Refugi is still open, but they took down the website? That was my best guess to meet climbers. I also looked at "Lo Refugi" in "Montstant Natura" and that seems fairly social as well. The third I was looking at was the accommodations from "Livingsiurana.com" which advertises being climber run.

Any beta on where to meet partners would be much appreciated!

Mike · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Dec 2013 · Points: 20

So, I don't have an answer to the most recent question but I think more people should know this website​En la vertical​​​

That Dude · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Nov 2017 · Points: 0
K-Tanz wrote: Apologies for the slight hijacking, here, but can anyone recommend places to stay to meet other climbers? I am flying solo in early April and need to find some partners. My plan is Siurana but I am for sure flexible. Seems like the old Refugi is still open, but they took down the website? That was my best guess to meet climbers. I also looked at "Lo Refugi" in "Montstant Natura" and that seems fairly social as well. The third I was looking at was the accommodations from "Livingsiurana.com" which advertises being climber run.

Any beta on where to meet partners would be much appreciated!

Hey! I'm landing in Spain April 2nd and am also solo. Message me if you wanna plan on meeting up

Willem Braat · · Barcelona · Joined Dec 2017 · Points: 0

Chullila- great place, go!
Montserrat - head to El Bruc (south part of the range), enough to climb and not crowded. Monestry in weekend yes is crowded, get up early, and go!
Just make sure to do the full bolted routes, any other (mixed bolted) can get you into a runout slab or worse

Ryan M Moore · · Philadelphia, PA · Joined Oct 2014 · Points: 35

Don’t go to Montserrat on a weekend(or go early), but definitely go, it’s a kinda surreal experience with it being such a historic and touristy place where you first enter, but so many huge formations to climb. Felt like if the Washington monument was at the base of the wind river cirque.

La punsola is an awesome route, and if your girl is solid at 5.10, she shouldn’t have too much of a problem following the hard pitches, you can pull on the draws pretty much the whole way up the 11 pitches. Definitely 11+ if you’re not used to conglomerate. And wear a helmet, 2 and 3 pitches had lotsa loose stuff, the harder pitches were super solid. 

Guideline #1: Don't be a jerk.

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