Tuesday, July 8, 2014

Lofoten rocks

I had seven days of climbing in Lofoten. Katja hasn't ever climbed a multipitch and that's what we were set out to do: climb long, easy routes. I took Katja climbing for the first time in Las Vegas in 2012.  Not a bad place to start and we've been climbing together since. This was our first visit to Lofoten so we wanted to concentrate on getting to know the area, cover as much ground as possible, and tick off as many of the Top 50 routes as we could.

We were a group of five: me, Katja, Hanna, Tero, and Sami. Thursday we set up camp at Kalle (free, water and toilets at site) and took our gear for a hike in the rain. Gusting winds broke one pole in my tent. Awesome!

Hiking in Paradiset and checking out all the lines we drove 18 hours for but can't climb!

Friday morning we climbed single pitch climbs at Paradiset. I decided to start with an easy route: Dashboard of Light (4). Are those pinscars? The pro is tricky at the bottom. I like! Katja cleaned and laughed at my placements: "Emma, what is this?!" Looks like I've taught her well. Next we climbed Svenske diedret (6+) which is super fun, has a tricky crux in the middle, and is easy to protect - 'Take, Katja, take, please!' I don't know what to do! Our last climb was a no name route (?) next to Svenske or maybe it was an approach to a route. More rain.

Looks rad, doesn't it? Best of Paradiset! I know you want to climb it. The Approach Route (2+)

Tero and Hanna at the base of Svenske diedret (6+). I flailed it, Tero styled it.

Saturday we went to Eggum. Eggum is known for hard sport routes and for staying dry in the rain. There were a couple new routes (5-ish) which are not mentioned in the guide book. Tero redpointed something in the steep section and me, Katja, and Hanna climbed all the easier routes (5- to 7-) on the right side. I definitely recommend going to Eggum!

Eggum is weather proof. Pic: Sami

That same night, after dinner, me and Sami gave Puffrisset (5+, 110m, 2P/4P) a go. While we were having dinner we watched two teams bail halfway up. Maybe intentionally? It was midnight and the weather was getting better. P3 looked very wet from camp and there was only one way to find out for sure. This one I climbed in my pj's. P2 of Puffrisset is amazing! If only it were 30 meters long like the guide book says. And not wet. Fine, we bail. You can rap from the fixed gear+sling anchor with a single 70 and rope stretch will take you all the way down.

Hyvää Juhannusta! Ei sada! Lettuja on! Viihteenä livepakitus!
Ihan kohta seinälle! Kyllä kelepaa! Pic: Katja
I took a pic of the amazing finger crack! Right. Didn't send the pic. P2 Puffrisset (5+)

Bail beta for Puffrisset: Single 70 with rope stretch. Is that rock wet?

Then Katja, Sami, and I went to Paradiset.  We climbed Demonstranten (4+) and went to bed around 7am.

The next day, Sunday, we finally went to climb a long route: Bara blåbär (5-, 236m, 5/7P,  depending on how many you link, I'd do 1+2, 3, 4+5, 6, 7). It's very enjoyable, especially P5.  Easy, fun, long, well protected slabby crack climbing. The last two pitches were wet, grassy, and trickier to protect. Tero took the bottom, I took the upper section. But I bailed the last pitch. It's a 4. Not my proudest moment. Sami and Hanna shared leads and both of them sent. We all rapped together with two single 70s. There's a new rap route-you can now avoid the rope eating flake!

Katja is showing us the way! Bushwhacking!

P5: 40 meters of perfect hands to fingers.

Tero and I taught Katja multipitch. "varmistas ny vähä ittees". Pic: Tero
Kyllä muakin hymyilyttäs, jos mun olkapäästä kasvais kaks noin kaunista naista. Pic: Tero

It's Katja's time to rap with a Mega Jul. Tök tök tök tök tök tök. Just saying.

 Hiking back to our car, 11pmish.

Monday was a rest day so we went cragging at Gandalf. Me and Katja climbed Gandalf (5, about 100m, 3P). It was super fun to climb with Katja. I picked Gandalf only because Gollum was taken. It was on ok route, but there was a lot of rope drag.

Hello! P2 of Gandalf.

Kymmenen vuotta sitten ajeltiin Parkanossa kylärinkiä. Nymme kiivetään. <3

Tuesday we climbed the Goat via Forsida (5, about 130m, 5P). A couple Swedish climbers told us (after climbing Blåbär) that Forsida is the best rock climb ever! It's also a top 50 route. Expectations were built. We had fun, but it sure had nothing to do with the climbing. Tero practiced climbing backwards with barefoot shoes and I practiced protecting a fist size crack with nothing bigger than a #1. We try to keep things interesting even if the climbing is not. If you want to climb the goat I recommend Forsida. If you are looking for a good rock climb, the goat is not the place. None of us jumped.

Näillä mä elän, jälkiuunipalaa ja Kallen raidallista. Illallinen on sit vimpanpäälle!

Taken from the top of Forsida/the goat. The view gets better the higher you go.

Wednesday morning me and Tero decided to climb Himmelen kan vente (6+ A0 or 7-, 310m, 7-9P). My friends call me Tekno-Hemuli (also Tekno-Rape). I can get up surprisingly difficult lines on lead compared to what I can free climb. Do not fear, you can always grab gear! There was no need to pull on gear on Himmelen except on the A0. Which Tero free climbed. I didn't lead anything and I had a blast! The approach was a little scary because we went too far up the gully.

On our way to climb Presten vie Himmelen.

The hardest pitch was the 6- dihedral, which according to the topo, goes straight up a blank dihedral. Tero placed a purple C3, a tiny wire, and went for it. The 6- did not go on lead nor TR. Tero went left instead. Way to get a boost of confidence for the next four 6+ pitches! :) Daniel and Mats were climbing one pitch ahead of us. You can read about there trip here. The descent was beautiful. It probably took us an hour and a half. Crocs work perfect.

Goofing around because we are in no hurry
Daniel and Mats starting the last pitch

Hiking back, not that way tho. So pretty!

Dinner was waiting for us at Kalle. We made crepes for dessert. Thank you guys! Sami and Katja started driving home that night.

Standard dinner menu: mushroom risotto, fried eggs, sausage, and veggies. And crepes! Pic: Katja

Thursday was our last day and it was just me, Tero, and Hanna. We climbed Lundeklubben (6, 100 meters, 3P climb, which could have been done in 2P but I did in 5P, hahaa!). Me and Tero led in blocks. Today was my block. Here is how I did: I tried taking right off the deck.... twice. I offered Tero a lead. I placed too much pro. I got off route, but I managed to send. This route is definitely worth doing!

Seeeeent! Girl, you need to take a shower...

Chips, salsa, hummus, and ölkorv (Thank you Katja, you made my day) were waiting for us at the car. We had dinner at the parking lot and drove to Henningsvær to take a shower at the Klatrekafeen. Shower for two euros and a towel for one euro.

That same night we climbed Colibrien (6-, 180m, 5P). I recommend this route! It's an adventure and every pitch has it's own character. Especially P1 was enjoyable because it was actually a great pitch (first pitches tend to be scrambles) and different from anything I've ever climbed. I decided to rap P5 with a single 70 to save time and reduce the risk of getting our ropes stuck. Right. Trust the abseil beta, not the route beta. P5 is 37 meters not 30.

The climb felt hard for the grade but lack of sleep and rest probably affected my performance. I came close to bailing because I was seriously debating whether me being tired would create an unnecessary risk to my team. I had some chocolate and managed to pull myself up the wall. Hanna was at the top of her game and gave me energy. We were done around 7am or so.

P4 of Colibrien, stellar weather 5am. Hanna is having fun!

After three short hours of sleep, we drove home in one push. My fingers went completely numb that morning and stayed that way for the next 48 hours. Sweet. The end.

FYI, I just  booked flights to the States. Norwegian air flies to Oakland for 660 euros! The Valley might be too hot but not the High Sierras! And Max! And High Sierras!!! I must head to work. Take care y'all!


  1. Emma!<3 Mahtavia kuvia!:)))) Ikävä..:(

  2. Kiitos samoin ihana Leila! Terkkuja kaikille sinne! :) Kivaa lukea sun kuulumisia! Tuu jouluksi Suomeen jooko!

  3. Mä luulin kommentoineeni tänne jo.. Taisi jäädä ajatuksen tasolle sekin taas. Millon sä lähdet taas matkaan?? Ja kuinka pitkäks aikaa? Ihana muuten lukea noita sun amerikkakokemuksia, tulee niin oma vaihtovuosi mieleen! Ja upeita kuvia! :)