ROCK CLIMBING EXPEDITION
september – november
After successful execution of the Stage I of our 2016 Eastern Europe Rock Climbing Expedition we took a break from climbing. The nice and sunny Greece was too hot to keep climbing.
We now invite keen climbers to participate in the Stage II of the Expedition. We offer two months plus of intensive rock climbing trip through the Southern part of the Eastern Europe and through Greece:
GREECE MACEDONIA (F.Y.R.O.M.) BULGARIA ROMANIA BULGARIA and back to GREECE.
The proposed route will take us for the best rock climbing in continental Greece, equally fantastic rock climbing in Bulgaria and Romania in their beautiful mountains, where climbing crags can easily compete with the rock climbing sites in Western Europe i.e. Spain or France..
Scroll down for the highlights of climbing sites we plan to visit.
Area: Meteora, Greece
Meteora famous for its monasteries is also one of the most famous rock climbing sites in Greece and offers rock climbing on conglomerate rock of huge pinnacles; on top of some of these pinnacles are actually these medieval monasteries. Meteora is a great place to start a trip with plenty of mid range climbs in the F5a to F6c+ grade range on slaby or vertical rock; harder quality routes are of course available. The routes there are a mixture between bolted and traditional, and vary between single pitch and multi-pitch routes up to 300m long.
Area: Prilep, Macedonia (FYROM)
It will be great to climb the Prilep granite, as mostly the limestone sport climbing awaits us in other crags we plan to visit. You may bring your bolder-pad as well as this place has some nice boulder fields. Perched on a hill looking over the city, you can enjoy one of the few granite outcrops in Europe.
Area: Rila Mountains, Bulgaria
The highest mountains in Bulgaria offer a lot of hiking, bouldering, rock climbing and mountaineering. The choice of climbing will be great. There are 100 peaks above 2000 m; these mountains offer picturesque scenery with many lakes, near 120, at alpine settings. There one can undertake a multi-pitch the most difficult climbing route in the whole of Bulgaria to the summit of Maliovitsa peak (2729 m a.s.l.). Musala (2925 m a.s.l.), the highest peak of the Rila also offers challenging climbs. There will be possible to visit world famous Rila Monastery.
Area: Lakatnik, Bulgaria
The rocks of Lakatnik are an excellent place for rock climbing. Set on the left slope of Iskar Gorge near Lakatnik Station, an alpine station and a place for comfortable camping for climbers. Lakatnik is a fantastic sport climbing venue with around 300 routes, in a fantastic location only 63km from Sofia, is the most popular rock climbing area in Bulgaria. The majority of the routes are well bolted and the quality of the limestone rock is very good, with most routes between 10 to 30m long. The climbing here is perfect during the spring, autumn and warm winter days.
Area: Vratsa, Bulgaria
Located in a valley a few kilometres from Vratsa town are a Several good quality limestone cliffs stretch for over a kilometre in length into a valley south of the town of Vratsa. Many big walls and isolated towers, including the longest wall in Bulgaria, extend for up to 350m in length. There are over 250 sport climbing routes, mostly single pitch to choose from. There is also plenty of traditional multi-pitch routes and most of them have belays anchors. Vratsa offers overhanging sport routes up to 8c and traditional routes up to 400 m long. Vratsa is a host to regular competitions attracting many climbers from Europe and the world so it will be possible to climb what the champions climb.
Area: Băile Herculane, Romania
The most popular rock climbing area in Romania, one of the hosts to the Petzl Road Trip in 2014, and every year the host to Herculane Climbing Open, this year HCO 2016. More than twenty bolted crags quite easily accessible from Herculane are on either side of the road crossing the Cerna valley along its 25 km run with more than 500 routes to climb. The area offers a wonderful example of traditional Romanian life and a unique privilege for climbers to discover this culture. Baile Herculane has been renowned for its hot springs since ancient Roman times – today, one can enjoy a hot dip after a day of climbing!
Area: Sohodol, Romania
Set in a quite valley several up to 30 meters high limestone crags offer dozens of fully bolted routes. Climbing there will be really good fun in this tranquil place. You will not want to leave it!
Area: Brasov, Romania
Solid limestone, with a large variety of holds, from one finger pockets to large cracks, is the rock of the area offering near 700 climbing routes on several crags. The limestone on slabs offers excellent grip. There is a small river flowing through the area and lots of springs that make it an ideal camping area. On some crags climbing is mostly vertical or on overhanging faces; bouldering is also possible on many boulders around. In free time one can to learn about the local traditions of the inhabitants or visit nearby Draculas Castle.
Area: Veliko Tarnovo, Bulgaria
One of the old school climbing areas in Bulgaria is near Veliko Tyrnovo, a charming town, the old medieval capital of Bulgaria. There are 2 well developed crags including several roof lines in a beautiful cave. Climbing there is one of the most enjoyable in the whole of Bulgaria.
Area: Petropigi, Greece
Welcome again to Greece: this is a nice spot to test your pump; one of the steepest places on our list. The cave, that this place is famous for, looks incredible. With a variety of walls and styles you are sure to find a climb you will love. While we wont be heading to climb the famous walls of Kalymnos, there will be a lot of fun to have in the cave and other climbs in Greece.
Area: Nafplio, Greece
Nafplion, Greeces ex-capital city, roughly 150km south-west of Athens offers an excellent quality limestone on crags near the city in fantastic seaside locations. The cliffs offer climbing on superb quality pocketed limestone high above the beaches and in deep secluded coves. You can climb for example at Karathona crag in the morning, take a mid-afternoon beach break, and end the day climbing at Anatoli at the opposite end of the beach. You can climb at sea level, or go up to the 1000 meters above the sea level and also find several developed crags. If only there was time for climbing them all! Nafplion itself is a superb old city with an old Venetian fortress dominating the city.
Area: Leonidio, Greece
Leonidio, a place only 80 km south from Nafplio on the east coast of Peloponnese, becomes as popular as Kalymnos. Most climbing in Leonidio happens at crags on the hillsides surrounding the town. Dozens of crags of solid limestone offer endless options of climbing of all grades; climbing is on tufa columns, smooth crimpy walls, caves with stalactites, grey balancy walls. And the best period for climbing in Leonidio is November to April. According to Aris Theodoropoulos, climbing sites developer and the author of climbing guides for Greece, “Leonidio is possibly one of the best European destinations for winter climbing”.
So, we can climb there for as long as we want, even during the coming winter!