Ablon is an enchanting valley situated at 1400m on the Plateau des Glières in the France's Upper Savoy which conceals a small gem surrounded by forests, lush alpine meadows, grazing cows and a picturesque alpine hut where you can eat and drink. The crag, equipped primarily by Robert Durieux is truly memorable just like the routes themselves: prepare for battles on long, delicate climbs which require excellent footwork and balance rather than brute strength and where the run-outs are, at times, "generous" to say the least.
Ablon is located circa 2 hours east of Lyon or 1 hour south of Geneva. Reach Thorens Glières and follow signs for Plateau des Gliéres (circa 14 km). At the plateau take the road right for Chemin du Collet, then break off right after circa 300m onto the dirt track towards Chalet d'Ablon/Chemin des Eaux Noires. park the car after circa 800m in the lay-by on the right. From here continue on foot along the pleasant forest road, mainly in descent, to main crag's main sectors (Black and white, Rèsistance at libertè, La ligne du temps) in circa 50 minutes. The majority of hard routes are located in the Impact sector, 5 minutes from the main sectors. All other sectors can be reached within 5 - 45 minutes.
Ablon is a extremely rough compact grey limestone crag with pockets and runlets. The angle varies from vertical slabs to steeply overhanging bulges. There are more than 250 routes including a series of longer 2-3 pitch outings. The grades are never soft touch and vary from 4b to 8b+, although the majority of the routes are between 6a and 7c and the most popular are the easier outings between 4b and 6a. Many routes sport "generous" run-outs as has become the norm on French crags. The crag faces ESE and receives the sun from 9.00 to 15.00 but, given the altitude (1400m) climbing is pleasant in the sun. Climbing is not possible in the rain except for a few overhanging sectors, but the crag dries quickly. The crag is suitable for families, with nearby meadows to play in.
FOOD AND ACCOMODATION
Camping is prohibited in the Ablon valley. Check availability in the Gite d’Ablon or, alternatively, camp at Thorens Glières (tel. +33 04.50.22.41.98) or in the nice but spartan camping “Nantizel” (tel. +33 04.50.22.43.44).
The crag is located in a marvellous untouched corner of the Alps. Please respect the environment.
“La falaise d’Ablon”, by Robert Durieux
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