The rich wine of burgundy

I have no idea what this photo will look like:

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OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

I’m editing on my laptop without my proper external monitor. The laptop has a particularly poor screen that’s useless for any kind of image adjustment. So I’ve just applied one of the lightroom B+W presets to this picture and fingers crossed. I won’t be able to see it properly until I get home again.

The french region of Bourgogne, Burgundy to most of the english-speaking world, is famous for its rich food and rich, great wines. Unfortunately the rich food is 99.9% meat-based and we’re vegetarian. The wine is pretty good though and I have a glass in my hand as I type (actually it’s on the floor…take a sip…back on the floor again).

The real secret of Burgundy for the climber is that it makes for a great sunshine sport climbing holiday. Lots of great limestone and granite crags, many of them road-side, with lots in the easier grades (which we like!) You need to like peace and quiet as there’s not much in the way of night-life. Plenty of eating out in those typical burgundian restaurants – but see earlier comment about being vegetarian. You can get an omelette if you ask nicely… The wine really is good though (takes another sip…back on the floor again).

The weather in september is perfect for climbing. Warm but not hot, but with hot enough sun for a nice tan if you want one. Cold at night though. Quiet roads, easy travelling, quiet crags.

There’s even some wildlife. Lots of big birds of prey flying round, lizards basking in the sun, and this…

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OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

In real life it was about four to six inches long so hardly a threat. It was sitting in the crack at the bottom of a route we were doing. Didn’t seem bothered by us using it’s home as a foot-hold. I don’t know if it’s a tiny snake or a slow-worm but the head looks the wrong shape to be a slow-worm. Sorry it’s out of focus.

The climbing guide book we have has an interesting approach to grading. This is the frequent result:

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OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

Gear left on the climb. We often judge the success of our climbing by the amount of gear left behind. Leaving no gear is judged as success, it means we climbed efficiently and capably. Leaving some gear is also judged as success. It means we had an adventure. In this case, the top of the route was too hard so I lowered off prematurely.

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