Tuesday, May 20, 2014

Kustavi Weekend Aka Likat män Kustaviin kiipeen trädii!

This is my first post about climbing in Finland. Ha! My absolute favorite crags in Finland (so far) are Olhava (tall trad), Kustavi (a lot of trad), and Mustavuori (tall sport). This weekend I took girl friends of mine to Kustavi. They are all new to crack climbing so it was fun to expose them to the style of climbing I love, but don't get to do often enough here. Let's face it, nothing is as cool, rad, fun, scary, badass, sexy, and awesome as trad climbing. Climbing sport at your limit is cool. Climbing trad at your limit is impressive. Onsight trad at your limit and you gain my eternal respect plus I bake you as many cookies as you want. Or apple pie. This is my humble opinion.

Kustavi climbing area is a perfect place for a beginner crack climber. Go there! Short routes, a lot of easy to moderate climbs, easy to bail, and mostly well protected. Jammi.net has an awesome database of the routes and access. Knowing how to build a natural/trad anchor is a must though. Tick warning!

We started at Kräkiniemi. I held a short tape glove clinic first and then we went after it! Mörköränni (5 TR), Amelie (5), Varjo (6- TR), Lumikko (6), and Punainen Planeetta (6-). I almost got shut down by the first move of Lumikko because I didn't have small enough gear with me to protect the crux from the deck. Fortunately Eero had a tiny stopper and he placed it for me from the ground. I placed the draw. We all started laughing and came to the conclusion that I just lost the onsight.

Kiia-Riikka laybacking Punainen Planeetta (6-). We made it into a multipitch. Riikka took the second pitch (ledge traverse R, 2m) to the rap anchor. Pic: Katja

Next to Hopia. I wanted Katja, Kiia-Riikka, and Hanna-Maria to climb Säkkipilli (6-) because it's the most straight forward "easy" hand crack at Hopia. I put up a top rope on Lasten huoneen avaimet (5) and Säkkipilli (6-). After Säkkipilli I cleaned two routes I've never been on: Vappuheila (6- Liisa sent!) and Kylmä hönkä (6+ a proud send Eero!). Kylmä Hönkä was the only climb I almost did not get up - my favorite route of the day!

Liisa is sending Pasuuna (6), Suvi is cleaning Vappuheila (6-)

Katja jamming Säkkipilli (6-) Pic: Hanna-Maria

Kiia-Riikka jamming Säkkipilli (6-) Pic: Hanna-Maria
Kylmä Hönkä (6+ TR) was my favorite climb of the day! Such a battle! Pic: Kiia-Riikka

Tero and Alan were doing the climb-50-routes-in-24-hours-challenge and if I remember correctly they were at 30 when they came to Hopia. Only leads counted as a pitch, they had to second some routes in order to clean them. Some french freeing occurred. They climbed until 1am and continued the next morning. 52 routes total in 24 hours. And a couple impressive onsights. Way to send guys! You get apple pie!

Tero and Alan were crushing some routes. 52 to be exact. They were the sending team!

We are the tape glove team!
"Burritos for dinner, apple pie and vanilla for dessert!" Pic: Katja
"And there is our creme fresh..." Leave no trace! Pic: Katja

Next day we went to Pärkänvuori. I picked routes that friends of ours recommended: Sirgelimies (4), Rikun reitti (5-) and Norjalaisten reitti oikea (5). The routes were super fun and Katja, Kiia-Riikka, and Hanna-Maria were all psyched! Rikun reitti was everyone's favorite. Norjalaisten reitti turned into an epic because I managed to get myself and my gear stuck at the crux. Fortunately Eero and Pyry rapped past me and gave me a #3 and a #4. Epicing at the crag (I can not emphezize the word crag enough here) is always fun and educational.

Morning! Pic: Hanna-Maria
Hanna-Maria on Rikun reitti (5-) Pic: Katja?
Kiia-Riikka on Rikun Reitti (5-) Pic: Hanna-Maria

Katja cleaning my mess on Norjalainen Oikea (5) Pic: Hanna-Maria
Kiia-Riikka chalking up for Norjalainen Oikea (5)

The drive home was cheerful. TikTak was playing. This upcoming weekend I'm doing the first course in a certification program called KTO which is a prereq for taking the Sport climbing instructor course. Nothing makes me happier than seeing people get psyched about climbing! So I've decided to pursue getting certified. Next week I'm going to Bohuslän in Sweden. Then Lofoten in Norway. And if I get my thesis done this summer I will go to Yosemite in the fall. And I'm moving and working/saving up somewhere in between. Keeping busy in Finland!

Thank you for the amazing weekend ladies!


  1. Ahhhahaaa aivan mahtava viikonloppu ja kirjoitus! You go girl! ^_^ <3

  2. Kiitos Katja! Oli kyllä huippua! \o/ <3