Saturday, 6 March 2010

Rjukan Ice Climbing

We arrived in Norway with a bang that was our landing the runway was a sheet ice pretty scary.
Outside the airport it was blowing a gale and about -12 the adventure had begun.
Our first 5 days in Rjukan were really cold average daily temp -16 so it made the ice really brittle so it was coming away in huge pieces. One of our group ended up with a split eye and great black eye.
We headed for the lower gorge for the first 2 days then we checked out Ozizmosis these were great intro's into the area and ice climbing.
Norway is'nt cheap and £5 a pint at happy hour we only had a couple of beers before maxing out the credit cards.
With such cold conditions and huge amounts of snow our next planned adventure to MAEL was going to be full on.
MAEL is a true adventure with an absail into the gorge then a 4 pitch WI 3 cllimb out for the hard core there a WI 4 & WI 6.
After a long full days climb everyone was rewarded with 5ft of snow towade through a tough but awsome day.
It was time for a rest day for me but the remianing of the group climbed every day.
Rjukan is a world class ice climbing area with over 150 water falls to climb with climbing routes to suit every level.
We headed out for the Krokan area once everyone was feeling strong this area had some of more technical climbing in the area there were some pretty knarly ice colums to be climbed for those good enough of mad enough.
We spent a couple days in the upper gorge there was some full on multi- pitch routes to be climbed including the world class Lipton good knows how people manage to climb it.
After 10 days we were all well and truly wasted everyyone climbed really hard but we all left Norway very happy and planning next years rtn trip.