Friday, October 07, 2011
Picos De Europa: Add It To Your Hit List
It’s incredibly apropos that I found this video for the Friday Psyche, as I’ve just returned from a trip that included a sneak peek at one of the more inspiring places I’ve been; Spain’s Picos de Europa.
BD athletes Adam Pustelnik and Nico Favresse make first repeat of Orbayu (8b+/8c) in Naranjo de Bulnes, Spain from Black Diamond Equipment on Vimeo.
When I originally contemplated trying to qualify for the ’11 Worlds it was due to some photos I’d seen of a peak called Uriellu, on a formation known as Naranjo de Bulnes. Despite its strange name—it neither looks like an orange or can be seen from the village of Bulnes—the peak, as well as its surrounding countryside, inspired me like few places on earth. My goal, should I qualify, would be to compete at Worlds and climb it on the same trip.
This dream was squelched by a mid summer’s mtn biking accident that left my hand unable to grasp a coffee cup, much less a mono, but I vowed to at least visit the area to see what I was missing. A while I didn’t get anywhere near its base, I was at least able to make a post-race hobble/pilgrimage to view Uriellu’s grandeur and toast to it with a bottle of the region’s beverage of choice, sidra.
Turns out my enthusiasm only increased in person.The area not only offers a lifetime of climbing opportunities it seems as though every single village, hamlet,and trail are enchanted. Spending some quality time here has moved to the top of my to-do list. I find it more than serendipitous that the 2013 World Championships will be held in Segovia, only a few hours to the south.