Avg: 3.2 from 5 votes
|Type:||Trad, 700 ft, 5 pitches, Grade II|
|FA:||J. Casas, A. Munoz, J. Estrada, 1956|
|Page Views:||3,881 total, 40/month|
|Shared By:||Monomaniac on Dec 15, 2009|
DescriptionBadalona is a fun, classic mountaineering adventure up the ESE face of Gorro Frigi. This is an old-school route in every sense. The route wanders all over the face, in search of the path of least resistance, causing ridiculous rope drag despite the virtually non-existant pro. Despite the modest grade, this is in no way a route for beginners. One 40m pitch has only two bolts, neither of which are likely to hold in the event of a lead fall. This is "Leader Must Not Fall" territory, and for that matter, the second better not fall either since almost every pitch involves at least one dramatic, unprotected traverse. It would be very easy for the second to deck on the first pitch. Since this route first went up, several more direct, modern routes have been added that cross this route, some several times. Beware of other parties on the face as you may intersect at some point. Also the addition of modern bolts on these newer routes can make routefinding more challenging, but the updated belay bolts are a real plus.
Despite all of the drawbacks, this is an excellent adventure, and a great way to sample the treasure of Montserrat climbing. The rock is excellent and the views are unparalleled. Competent parties can fire this off in a couple of hours, leaving plenty of time to explore nearby areas or tour the Monastery.
1. 5.5, X. Climb straight up for about 30´ to an old bolt. Clip the bolt, then head almost straight left and slightly up for a long runout, to a sling-able cobble and an old bolt. Make another long runout, left & slightly up, to a bolted anchor in a horizontal pod.
2. 5.7 R. Head straight left for 15 feet. Clip a bolt, then head straight up for around 40 feet, to an optional belay station. Head straight left again, to another bolt, then head up & slightly right over steep terrain to a whitish flake. Its easy to get off route here, following closely spaced black bolts up & slightly left. If you follow the bolted route, it is possibly to get back on route by traversing straight right when you reach the belay station of yellow bolts. If you take the route to the flake, continue up above the flake to a bolted anchor on a sloping ledge.
3. 5.8, G. Crux pitch. Head mostly straight up from the belay (slightly right), aiming for the 2-foot roof above. You should pass 2 bolts en route to the roof. Pass the roof on the right, then traverse left over the lip to pass the 2nd roof on the left, and another bolt. The crux is a long reach over the lip of the first roof. Head straight up, to another bolt, and then another low angle sloping ledge system. Belay here, or traverse right 15 feet to another belay with better bolts.
4. 5.7, PG. Head straight up from the right belay, clipping green bolts. This may not be part of the original Badalona route, but its not hard and surely much better protected than any other option. The angle eases up after a short bit of steeper climbing. Eventually a bolted belay below a right facing flake is reached.
5. 5.4, R. Head up to the right-facing flake, and follow it up to the big left-facing dihedral. There are no bolts through this section, but there are opportunities for natural gear if you have it. Traverse left below the left facing dihedral, passing two bolts, one sketchy and one bomber. After the second bolt, head right, over the dihedral, towards the cross on the summit. Belay off the cross.
Descent: Head over the top, and pick up the Via Ferrata cable. Follow this down to the shoulder between Gorro Frigi and its SW neighbor. Head down the gully to the SE towards the Tourist trail, with more Via Ferrata, reaching the Tourist trail in about 10 minutes.