This post is part of a longer trip report. You can access the full table of contents here.
Having pitched our tents in a campsite on the outskirts of Cortina, we spent the afternoon climbing at Campo Volpera. This crag offers a variety of bolted routes amongst an old high ropes course situated in the forest on the edge of Cortina. The walk-in took us around 40 minutes, not including time spent wondering around trying to find the crag.
Despite having walked right over the top of a via ferrata route down to the start of the main climbs we got lost for a while in the undergrowth. Once got down into the main climbing area we managed to do a fair few shaded routes that afternoon.
In hindsight, the first hint that the grading in Italy was different to what we had been used to was when Steve set off on a climb that had a 6a daubed on at the start, but the climb seemed to be a lot more taxing than it should have been. ‘It’s a 5+ in the guidebook’, added Andy motivationally as Steve stretched towards the next clip.
Ten weeks of sitting in an office had really taken its toll and the routes felt awkward and pumpy. At least my finger strength had increased from hours of vigorous typing at ungodly hours and my calves had definitely become more sculpted from wearing incredibly uncomfortable heels for sixteen odd hours a day. I valiantly retreated, offering to buy supplies for dinner before the shops closed.
To see what we got up to on the rest of our trip or if you are looking for planning advice, the full table of contents can be accessed here. Alternatively, go to the next article in this collection: Day 2 – Faffing on Cinque Torri.