4 Deserts: Madagascar race, story and photos

We have just posted report with 27 photos of the the Madagascar Race 2014. The Madagascar Race is a 250 km (155 miles) running race which is part of 4 Deserts Roving Race series. The 2014 edition started in the north of Madagascar, close to the city of Antsiranana and went South – Soutwest to finish at the city of Ambilobe. There were 6 stages in 7 days: almost 4 Marathons in 4 days, then 77 km, a rest day and a final stage of 10 km.

We are now leaving for California for more running and bouldering..

Madagascar Race 2014 (© P. Gatta)
Madagascar Race 2014 (© P. Gatta)

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Climbing: Maladiere – Indiana Jaune

I had a fun yesterday climbing with Dakota Jones in La Maladiere. We did Indiana Jaune (TD+, 6b+, 270m), a pretty amazing limestone route.

La Maladiere, Indiana Jaune (blue) and Noli Me Tangere in red (right), Tropiques rappels (left) (© P. Gatta)
La Maladiere, Indiana Jaune (blue) and Noli Me Tangere in red (right), Tropiques rappels (left) (© P. Gatta)

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Alpinism: Aiguille du Peigne – Le Maillon Manquant

After have climbed Cache Cache yesterday, Pascal and I went to the SW Face of gendarme rouge of Aiguille du Peigne (3078m) to climb Le Maillon Manquant a 400m route graded ED-, 6b+/A0. I must say that after the amazing pitches of Cache Cache, I was a bit disapointed by Le Maillon Manquant. There are some nice pitches too but the route is a bit weird, going through slabs where there are nice cracks a couple of meters left or right, not to mention pulling the bolts of the 6b+/A0 pitch…

Aiguille du Peigne - Le Maillon Manquant (© P. Gatta)
Aiguille du Peigne – Le Maillon Manquant (© P. Gatta)

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Alpinism: Pointe Adolphe Rey – Cache Cache

Just a week ago I was in Madagascar finishing the last stage of a 250 km race and today I spent an great day climbing in Mont Blanc Massif, so different and so fun! Pascal and I climbed Cache Cache in Pointe Adolphe Rey (3,535m), another fantastic route. The route is 250m high and graded ED, 6c/7a depending on the topo.

On the way to Point Adolphe Rey (center) (© P. Gatta)
On the way to Point Adolphe Rey (center) (© P. Gatta)

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Great Himalaya Trail video

In September 2013, Anna and Philippe left the small village of Simikot in the Western Nepal, aiming to run the high route of the Great Himalaya Trail in less than 40 days. It is the equivalent of 40 marathons in 40 days with 15 passes over 5,000 meters and two over 6,000m. This home-made film tells their story.

Great Himalaya Trail video (© A & P. Gatta)
Great Himalaya Trail video (© A & P. Gatta)

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Alpinism: Grepon – Le soleil a rendez-vous avec lune

With a weather forecast that rather good, Ross and I decided to try to traverse Grepon (3,482m), climbing Le soleil a rendez-vous avec lune on the East face (TD+, 850m) and descending on the Nantillons side. That means we climbed with crampons, ice axes… After 19 pitches climbed in poor conditions we finally decided to go down but enjoyed the climb anyway.

11th pitch of Soleil a rendez-vous avec la Lune (© R. Hewitt)
11th pitch of Soleil a rendez-vous avec la Lune (© R. Hewitt)

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Alpinism: Pointes Lachenal – A l’oree du bois

After the recent snow falls on Mont Blanc Massif, most routes were in winter conditions except the Pointes Lachenal. Pascal and I went back to climb another route there ; A l’oree du bois. There are some nice pitches but the route is a bit confusing as it crosses 3 other routes. Anyway it was a nice day and a fun climb on the nice granite of Pointes Lachenal.

Early start on Aiguille du Midi ridge (© P. Gatta)
Early start on Aiguille du Midi ridge (© P. Gatta)

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Alpinism: Aiguille du Midi – La Contamine

Anna and I climbed another great route in Aiguille du Midi: La Contamine, 8 pitches, all nice! We finished right on time for a quick lunch on the sunny top of the Aiguille.

View over Grandes Jorasses and Rochefort from Aiguille du Midi (© A. Gatta)
View over Grandes Jorasses, Rochefort and Dent du Geant from Aiguille du Midi (© A. Gatta)

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Alpinism: Pointes Lachenal – Harold et Maud

Pascal and I climbed Harold et Maud in Pointes Lachenal this morning. What a beautiful route on a perfect Granite!! Note that the other routes on Pointes Lachenal and Aiguille du Midi were dry too.

View over Grand Capucin and Gervasuti Couloir from Pointes Lachenal (© P. Gatta)
View over Grand Capucin and Gervasuti Couloir from Pointes Lachenal (© P. Gatta)

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Climbing: Maladiere – Noli Me Tangere

We took the opportunity of a day of relatively good weather to climb Noli Me Tangere in La Maladiere, close to Cluses. Noli Me Tangere is a nice 280 meters route, graded ED, 7a+.

La Maladiere, Noli Me Tangere in red (right), Tropiques rappels (left) (© P. Gatta)
La Maladiere, Noli Me Tangere in red (right), Tropiques rappels (left) (© P. Gatta)

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