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Blockgrat

5.5, Trad,  Avg: 4 from 2 votes
FA: Otto Rinkel (1918)
International > Europe > Germany > Schwarzwald (Bl… > Battert > Blockgrat

Description

If you only do one route in Battert, this should be it. It's fairly easy, the most photogenic by far and just plain fun.

From the start, it isn't immediately clear you're climbing a tower. Once you get to the belay, i.e. sitting on top of the little tower it is. The top of the tower is just big enough for 2 people, pretty tight for 3.

The crux is stepping off the tower onto the wall. It's not as bad as it first looks but always inspires fear, even after a few times. Think of that scene from Indiana Jones where he steps out onto the invisible bridge.

Get one foot over (there's a nice little ledge for one foot) and then put some pro in while you still have one foot on the tower. A small cam is best, then a nut.

You can then get another cam in fast which is recommended. Then you've got to do a bit of searching for holds until the one and only bolt, after which it's then jugs.

Protection

Each belay has a single large ring bolt to use. Otherwise the first pitch is 100% trad, the second pitch has a shiney new titanium glue-in about 2 meters after the start. But that's it.

Pitch 1: Bring at least 3 slings to clove hitch small trees.

Pitch 2: the belayer must use a munter (off the anchor) because of the direction and tubers etc. not working super great. Don't belay off your body.

After putting one foot on the main wall, having the other still on the tower, you can get a yellow mastercam in the crack and and/or a small nut. Place them first before bringing your second foot over. Jesus nut!

Photos [Hide ALL Photos]

Climber beginning the second pitch of Blockgrat (UIAA 4+) with 30 meters of air below.
[Hide Photo] Climber beginning the second pitch of Blockgrat (UIAA 4+) with 30 meters of air below.
Climber beginning the second pitch of Blockgrat (UIAA 4+) with 30 meters of air below.
[Hide Photo] Climber beginning the second pitch of Blockgrat (UIAA 4+) with 30 meters of air below.
And he's over! After stepping across from the tower onto the wall, it's all gravy.
[Hide Photo] And he's over! After stepping across from the tower onto the wall, it's all gravy.
Another shot of pitch two, which is short. The first few moves are the "hardest" and then it's jugs to the top.
[Hide Photo] Another shot of pitch two, which is short. The first few moves are the "hardest" and then it's jugs to the top.
Begin of pitch 2. Place your pro while still having one foot on each side. 
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Here, the hex popped fast after the leader started, luckily the yellow mastercam stayed in place.
[Hide Photo] Begin of pitch 2. Place your pro while still having one foot on each side. Here, the hex popped fast after the leader started, luckily the yellow mastercam stayed in place.
Belay station at the top of pitch 2. Better to sit on the edge though for communication.
[Hide Photo] Belay station at the top of pitch 2. Better to sit on the edge though for communication.
Blockgrat, start of pitch 1.
[Hide Photo] Blockgrat, start of pitch 1.