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Summary

Great sport climbing area with hundreds of routes and easy access.

Description

A lovely set of buttresses tucked away in a sheltered, wooded valley with a tranquil river running through it and some great climbing, only minutes from the road.

The rock is a coarse textured and heavily pocketed limestone, and climbing on it is a real pleasure though hands can suffer from a prolonged visit here. The routes are well bolted almost without exception, and there is a huge range of climbs to choose from. Many of the pitches are very long, bring plenty of quick-draws and take note of the length of the route versus the length of your rope!

Much of the crag faces pretty much south, it is recessed and well sheltered, especially from northerlies. The crag is an ideal winter venue and is always popular especially at weekends. It can get very hot here at almost any time of the year, though the crags at the far eastern end of the valley and much of the Grande Face are tipped a bit to the east and go into the shade earlier than the rest of the cliff.

Topo : Grimper en Provence Verte, FFME 13, 2018. 128 pages. 20€

Access issues inherited from France

As of 2020, some privately owned climbing areas may have restricted access. Check with https://www.ffme.fr/

Approach

30min from Aix or 1h from Nice. Exit the A8 at Brignols (junction 35) and turn north from the roundabout on the ring road due north of the town centre onto the D554 - signed towards Le Val and Barjols. Just north of Le Val turn left (still on the D554) towards Châteauvert. After 9km cross the narrow bridge, turn right and follow the valley for 2km until the crags appear on the left, just round a sharp bend.

Ethic inherited from France

Park where indicated, take care of the environment, buy the local guidebook when possible (this is one of the ways you can help local route setters), clean up your shoes before climbing, don't spray beta, be polite.

Check https://www.gouvernement.fr/en/coronavirus-covid-19 for COVID-19 restrictions currently in place.

History

History timeline chart

The area was discovered in the 1960s and the first routes set by Jean Fabre in 1969 (Golot Fou). In the 1980s, Jean-Marc Roman et Thierry Oudin open more routes between 6c and 8b+ (Les Frontieres du Neant, Are you ready, Les Couleurs du Charme, Les elements ne font pas de cadeau, Power...). The cliff was closed from 1990 to 1994 but was reopened to the public and re-equipped to modern standards thanks to the FFME.

Did you know?

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Activity

Check out what is happening in Chateauvert.

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