Alta Val Aupa
Asphyxiated by the infernal heat of summer 2008, I decided to act on Gino Pavoni's suggestion and check out the crag Alta Val Aupa. I was immediately struck by the the imposing rock face in the upper sector and I returned a few days later with my brother Enrico, armed with a drill and bolts to establish the first routes.
That first day in May unfolded as follows: making use of the old route established by Gino & Co using pegs, I climbed the obvious 80m high crack and reached a terrace at half-height where I finally managed to drill the first bolt. The adventure began here, on a horizontal leftwards traverse, with all the gear clipped to my harness, including the drill, with my brother belaying me from down below. After 20 tiring meters I managed to weight a cliff and place some belay bolts, to reach a comfortable ledge where I equipped a lower-off point. I pulled the rope, abseiled down, and quickly bolted what the next day was to become Orgasmus – 8a, 35m of pure climbing, 11 bolts of intense fun, the first sport climb up the wall.
In summer 2009 I began bolting the Central Sector and built a comfortable terrace at the base of the crag. My 2011 climbing season began by freeing two former projects, 'Lupo solitario' 8a and 'Edelweiss' 8a+. The former climbs a fantastic grey wall up small crimps and is destined to become a classic, while the latter climbs 35m of fantastic rock. I then took the drill to hand once again and bolted a dozen other routes, all between 19:30 at 22:00, after having finished work... This is how these beautiful routes were created, which have provided endless summer fun for lots of friends.
At present the crag has 21 routes from 6c - 8a+ (to be confirmed) and a 8b/b+ project. The routes vary in length from 10m - 40m and are either short and intense or fingery and highly technical.
Take the A23 Palmanova-Tarvisio motorway, exit at Tolmezzo and follow signs for Tarvisio. Take the SS52 and join the SS13 for Tarvisio. After 5km turn off left for Moggio Udinese, and then in the village keep right for Val Aupa. Drive up the valley for 14km, first slightly uphill then even steeper, to reach a cement and stone building on the left. Drive up the dirt track 100m after this for circa100m to reach a methane cabin. Park here.
The rock is compact limestone with small crimps and some rounded pockets. Contrary to what you might think, despite the low angle the climbing is physically demanding. And great fun!
Recommended routes: Seici?...Menti! (7a+/b), In Prima linea (7c+), Lupo solitario (8a), Polvere d'argento (7c), Il Principe della falesia (7c/c+), Iniziazione (7b+), Adrenalina (7b+), Uomo non ti arrabbiare (8a), Edelweiss (8a+), Orgasmus (8a).
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