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Team Clif Bar Blog
Jan 3, 2012
Paul Robinson’s European Vacation

Happy New Year from the Team Clif family!  We hope that you got to spend some time over the last few weeks getting outside and doing the things you love.  Team Clif climber Paul Robinson shared the below story with us of his recent trip around Europe.  It sounds like a fantastic time and we hope you enjoy the read.  Keep an eye out for a lot more great athlete stories in 2012!

After a short trip to Sweden to compete in the LaSportiva Legends bouldering competition back at the end of October, I had a great itching for some outdoor climbing.  The heat of the summer had worn me down and I could not think of a better place to begin my autumn season of bouldering than in the canyon of Ticino in southern Switzerland. Ticino has yielded some of the best rock and hard bouldering that the world has ever seen.  The rock pretty much was sculpted for climbing.

I came back to the states for a couple of days, packed my bags, and headed out again to magnificent valleys of Southern Switzerland.  I arrived to a bit of rain but after a day or so of poor weather my friends and I were greeted by sunshine that would stick around for the next month!  Late Fall in Switzerland can be hit or miss with the weather but fortunately this November was perfect which made it nearly impossible to rest since the conditions were perfect every day of the week!

I set my sights on a couple of boulders that I had not managed to climb on my previous trip to Switzerland.  I managed to send a few of them but like any climbing trip, you somehow leave an area with more projects than you had originally come to try!

After nearly a month in southern Switzerland, climbing on incredible granite, taking in the sights, eating delicious food, and drinking incredible Italian wines, we decided to make a change of pace and move onward to the forests of Fontainebleau, France about an hour to the south of Paris.

Fontainebleau is the birth place of bouldering and it is always a treat to get to climb there!  I had been there only a few months prior but missed it dearly and was beyond psyched to get the opportunity to be back in what is my favorite climbing area in the world.  After a couple of days warming up to the area, I was psyched for a project that I had scoped on a previous trip.  After two days of work, I opened an amazing roof climb that I called "The Traphouse."  The line is super powerful but also has a unique and technical mantle at the top, a full value boulder!  It is crazy how people have been climbing in Fontainebleau for over 100 years now and there are still possibilities to put up new first ascents all over the place if you are motivated.

The next couple of weeks were unfortunately plagued with some poor weather.  We managed to get out a couple of times and I was psyched to send a couple of other cool boulders but it was a bit depressing sitting inside day in and day out watching the rain fall.  Never the less, we all managed to climb as much as we could and filmed a lot for an upcoming climbing movie!

I am now flying over Greenland on my way back to the states.  My trip to Europe was awesome and I am looking forward to many more adventures ahead!  Who knows where I may end up next but I am psyched for wherever that may be!  Until next time, happy holidays and happy sending in 2012!!


Posted by: 
George Thoma
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