Posts Tagged ‘Arco’

Last week of May I flew to Treviso with Tanya and Sven. We flew on Saturday and planned a week in Arco.

From Treviso we drove to Arco. It took 2,5 hours to get to our campsite. The weather was nice and sunny however we noticed that there are a lot of local showers especially above our campsite.

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Sunday we visited Val d’Agone. The description in the topoguide was quite accurate. I drove towards Sarche > Ponte Arche > Banali > Val d’Agone. I dropped Tanya and Sven near the crag and went to Trento to pick up another friend Anne who I invited to join us in Arco. On my way back our navigation led us to a different place. Nevertheless it took a long while to get back to the crags and called it a day.

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The next day we visited Massone. The familiar stories about polished routes came true. I climbed the most polished route of the crag called Pegasus. Warning: Don’t ever climb this route, it’s not fun at all and should be deleted out of the topoguide. Next to this crag on the right, 30 meters further, there are better routes with more overhang. I climbed 5 routes in a row which was awesome!

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Tuesday until Friday we visited Nago. This area is quite accessible by car and takes 10 minutes to walk to the crag. There are benches to sit, a big square where the sun shines, easy routes to warm up and hard routes in the shadow! I can’t wish for anything better. When you walk more into the forest, you’ll find walls and routes up to 40 meter! The view is amazing and the routes are lovely.

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1 week sounds too short though. I left a project behind which I think I can send under better conditions. The route is called Ghost Rider and is really awesome! I was able to test my new Boreal Satori shoes in this route. These toe down shoes are perfect in the overhang. I just need to link 3 moves together at the beginning of the route. Anyway, I will come back to finish it, hopefully very soon.

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I climbed 5 days in a row and felt exhausted but happy at the end of the week.

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I had a great time with friends in Arco! See you soon.

We arrived late at night at our hotel Campagnola. The place is called Riva del Garda which is about 3 km away from Arco.

The hotel is quite nice. There weren’t many spots available to park our car, but there was plenty of space across the street.

Elko and I shared a room which was faced on the streets. Our room had three beds, wireless internet, a small fridge, airconditioning, tv and a balcony.

Below you’ll see a few photos.

After a night of rest, I made breakfast in the hotel lunchroom the following morning. Nikki and Ralf were already enjoying their breakfast, precisely at 9 AM. It will be a nice day for Nikki, she will climb her qualifications today. As usual her hair was set tight, not a single hair was lost. Probably it’s her competition style.

After breakfast Nikki checked some movies on her notebook and read a book in the backyard.

The backyard was really nice, we could enjoy table tennis, basketball, had a swimming pool, trampoline, you name it and we got it. A very relaxing and amusing area to spend our morning. At 1 PM we’re leaving together to the competition venue.

I was the driver the whole week. We had this huge car, a Fiat Doblo. It had a big trunk and 6 gears to shift, awesome right? I was being a taxi cab and drove us to the competition venue.

The competition venue was surrounded by gates. There were people everywhere from the organisation, checking up on competitors for their athletes card. Without that card, it was impossible to enter the area. Luckily no one forgot that card though.

Here are some photos of the venue.

Nikki’s personal experience about the world championships are available on her webpage. While Ralf was checking in the isolation area behind the wall, Elko, Tom and I were standing in front of the wall to encourage Nikki.

Later I ran into Jorg Kemner, photographer from our climbing federation.

On request he was present to shoot awesome photos from the lead competition. Team member Jorg Verhoeven was present as well. He’s going to join us with the lead competition yeah.

The next day it was our turn to climb. Elko had to start early. I was just a few climbers after him. I felt so psyched and couldn’t wait to climb! I took lots of time to prepare for my first route. I borrowed Nikki’s goggles to check on the holds. It’s so nice, because you’re quite far away from the wall. I didn’t know all the holds though, however I had a good feeling about my first route.

The isolation area was a gym, not far away from the competition wall. We’re able to warm up there. It felt like a cozy gym in no time. There was a small wall outdoors as well, bit more overhang. The sun was shining and most of the climbers were warming up inside.

After warming up I went outdoors again. Walking in this hot sun towards the isolation behind the wall. Ralf was there to check up on us. It was nice that he was around. Just 4 climbers before it was my turn. I still had some time to warm up. Probably I have to climb at the same time as team member Jorg.

Before I entered the wall, my eyes got a quick peek at the route. Okay I know what to do, now lets go!

I was quite confident when I started my route. It went well! No problems with clipping quickdraws, I like this.

The distance between the holds were getting bigger and I start to doubt for a second. Should I put my foot higher or not?

My right hand was half locked off however I couldn’t resume my movement anymore and slowly gravity was winning. Noooo, I was falling in slow motion out of the route!!

Grrrrr, why is this happening to me on a competition? Why didn’t this happen to me during a training? Within a few seconds I’m standing on the floor. No, I don’t need any help to untie the rope. I can do that myself.

What a lame action. It’s time to get out of here. Dramatic disappointment.

I’m trying to accept my situation in the isolation area. My stomach feels funny though. I need some time to get over this. While Jorg, Elko and Tom are going for a bite, I decided to stay behind in the isolation area. I’m eating another sandwich with ham and take a powernap. Then I’ll go outside to the wall to prepare the second route.

I have all the time of the world to prepare this route. After a while I see Ralf appearing behind the wall. He’s giving me a signal that I’m up soon.

Behind the wall I’m getting ready for my second route. I spot photographer Jorg high in the scaffold with a big lens. He’s raising his thumb!

I know I can do it. I think this route is more continuous. From the first movement, it’s my goal to climb a bit faster than usual.

The first 3 clips with right, next with left and then right again. Easier said than done though. I’m not even half way the route and it feels good. Every move feels good. And I’m going to this side hold. I don’t know why I didn’t get this hold on top though, but I grabbed this hold on the side. There was no edge there! Suddenly I fall out of the route, just like that!!

I can’t believe this, yet again I’m standing on the floor without pumpy arms. I’m looking at the hold where I just fell out of the route. Sigh.

After an hour I start accepting my situation. I just screwed up my first World Championships. But I should be glad to be here at Italy. Jorg however climbed really well and sent the first qualification. His second route went well too, just a few holds below the top. It’s enough to advance to the semis!

Friday it was time for the women’s semis and finals. During the semis I think Jain Kim was climbing very steady. She managed to climb high, highest hold of all the ladies!

The finals were in the evening.

I think the route was nice but the end just sucked. There was a dyno in there, where everyone fell out of the route except one lady. Such a pity though. It shouldn’t be like that.

I think the women’s finals should be a route worth fighting for and they should get pumpy. Setting a dyno in a route, 20 holds before the end is just lame. Well that’s my opinion.

On the same day we went to the Garda lake. The sun was shining and it was nice to get a tan.

Chocolate brown yeah! It was nice to enjoy the environment and relax.

Saturday Elko and Nikki wanted to climb at Bolzano, because the Swiss team were climbing there as well. The semis starts at half past 4 in the afternoon. Without a driver my team members couldn’t go climbing. I tagged along and drove to Bolzano. It’s about an hour driving to get to the venue. We wanted to be there on time so we skipped our lunch. On our way to the venue, Nikki shared cookies which was nice when you feel hungry however not energizing for me. Our drive took us 2,5 hours because we got in a traffic jam!! We got lost at Bolzano as well. Fortunately Elko spotted a Salewa building and we managed to get there.

My plan was to climb some with Katherine Choong, but she was playing hard to get. Oh well, climbing with someone else from the Swiss team was nice as well. I didn’t climb more than 5 routes that day, my stomach was just too empty. Elko and Nikki climbed a lot though. I think this gym at Bolzano has nice routes!

We left at quarter past 5 and our goal was to support Jorg in his semis. He’ll climb at 6 PM. Unfortunately our ride back took us longer than expected. Again we got in a terrible traffic jam. I didn’t have time for this and had to anticipate while being stuck in a trafficjam. I could have gotten a ticket for my actions though, driving on the spare lane to escape the traffic jam and driving against traffic wasn’t a problem at all. The police was there to point us where we should drive. Due to this traffic jam we missed the semis. We ended up ordering a mix pizza in a restaurant. We enjoyed our pizza’s in our car. Such a horrible day for me, hopefully we’ll still make it back in time to witness the men’s finals!

With some luck, we made it just on time to witness the finals. We had enough time to get an icecream downtown.

Frits and Abel spotted us when we were back at the competition venue! Abel informed me about the finals. I didn’t even know who advanced to the finals. Unfortunately Jorg was not in it…The men’s finals had a nice route. I got sweaty hands by just looking at it! The small strong Spanish guy, Ramon, sent every route and won the finals. Very nice to see how strong he is during the finals!

On Sunday there was the Arco Rock Masters on the same competition wall. With different routes, only the best climbers were able to enjoy the routes. Two identical routes, set for duel climbing. Rules were easy, the first one to send the route without falling, wins and advances to the next round.

Again it was nice to see the first few climbers, but at some point it got bored. Except the finals, it went so fast and it was so exciting. Eventually Adam Ondra won this competition, Thomas Tauporn got second and Jakob Schubert was third in this event. The fastest time was set by Cedric Lachat. Really nice performances! The women’s results was surprising. A Russion woman Yana Chereshneva won and Johanna Ernst got second and the blonde Sasha DiGiulian ended up third.

The results can be found here.

Anyway, I enjoyed my time in Italy.

I had mixed emotions during my first World Championships. At this very moment I do feel exhausted, weak and tired. Lately I have been training irregular. I want to train on fixed days again. For now I’ll be back in The Netherlands for a while to fight gravity. It’s hard without rocks though, but I have enough time to prepare form y next international lead competition which will take place at Puurs end of September!

More photos will be available on my Facebook page!

This morning coach Wally gave me a quick call to wish me good luck and a safe flight. Right after that call, I entered Utrecht central. There was an announcement: No trains to Schiphol!

No need to panic though. I suddenly ran into team member Elko. He also got stuck here and together we travelled by cab to the Airport. A cab driver of large stature with a Mercedes, offered a ride for 100 bucks. His standard was usually set to 120 to the airport. With my awesome social skills, we could set a fixed price: 90 euros.

On the highway there was a lot of traffic jam!! Our driver took a shortcut and drove through small villages. Unfortunately we got stuck there as well. 2 lanes were closed! It was a race against the clock.

In the car I check my paper work. It was time to make a backup plan in case we would miss our flight. Nikki was already at the airport and got herself checked in. At quarter past 12 we still had to drive 3 km. We’re sure we’d miss this flight from 12.30.

5 minutes later we got confirmation at the check-in. The stewards sent us to the Ticket office. We were too late for our flight and had to rebook a new flight. Well now that is finished, however we’re still not sure if we have seats on the next flight at 16.15. If that one is full as well, then we’ll definitely have a seat on the next flight, which departures at 19.00h.

We passed the metal detectors, had lunch and we still have to wait for another hour.

At the gate we will be updated about our seats. Hopefully we can catch our flight today. Wish me luck!

Update: 17:45
At 16.15 Elko and I were waiting in front of the gate. I handed over my boarding pass to the stewards and had to wait patiently. We were still unsure whether we could tag along with this flight.

15 minutes later they announced us that there are probably no more seats available. I aksen about oer opportuniteit and the timetable of the net light. The stewards suggested us to take a seat and wait. I observed the stewards walking back and forth in the hallway to look for the final passengers. We witnessed how busy they were communicating with their walky talkies.

There was this Italian next to me, also listed on the waiting list. He could join this flight. Elko and I didn’t feel like waiting any longer at Schiphol airport. Then we got surprised by the steward! While we were patiently waiting, the steward raised 2 thumbs up in the air to us. That meant green light for the flight. 2 other passengers didn’t show up and we could substitute their seats. Oh yeah!

Fortunately we could finally go on board. We’ll arrive at half past 6 at Milano. And then we’ll have to drive about 3 hours to Arco, the place to be for the World championships!

Update: 23.30
We arrived safely at Milano. Fortunately I managed to pick up my luggage quick.

And then we rented a huge car to drive to Arco without any navigation. Luckily I prepared well this morning and printed the route from Milano to our hotel at Riva del Garda.

At 21.00h we stopped at Sola to have a quick dinner. We ended up in this super nice restaurant and ordered delicious pasta!

At half past 11 we arrived at the hotel. Ralf – sport coordinator – received us well and informed us about our startnumbers.

Tomorrow the ladies will start with their qualifications. Nikki will start in group A. In her first route she will start as 5th and second route as 25th! You can see her climbing on the webcam which will start from 15.00h!

Come Thursday the men’s will start their qualifications. Elko and I are both in group A. Elko will start 8th in his first route and 43rd in his second route whereas I will start 46th in my first route and 12th in my second route. Surprisingly Jorg will also compete and he will arrive tomorrow at Arco. He’s in group B and starts 13th in his first route and 82nd in his second route.

Anyway, we’re going to rock this competition! Goodnight to you all.

At this very moment, the World Championship is being held at Arco, Italy. All 3 disciplines of climbing are available: boulder, lead and speed!

In a few days, I’ll fly to Italy to join the lead competition. Dutch lead team will be represented by: Elko Schellingerhout, Tim Reuser, Nikki van Bergen and me. I’m so psyched!!

Check out the trailer below.

Read more »

Thursday afternoon Jort Veen, one of my sponsors, and I left The Netherlands to visit Italy. We felt like having a short holiday. It was only a matter of realising our plans.

Jort checking up on the tyres

Jort is pumping each tyre

Next day we were tired of all that driving. The weather was good, it was 29 degrees Celcius. What do you do when it’s so hot? Seek water of course. We went to this nice lake Lago di Cavedine to relax at the water.

Lifeguard

Temperature: 29 degrees, water: 15 degrees

It was so quiet. So cool, we definitely had a good time.

Jort

Truong

Super weather

My feet in the water

Later on we went to visit Arco for nice pizza’s and icecreams. We bought icecreams at several places, however only one can be the best. Tarifa Gelateria definitely sells the best icecream. Marco, thank you for the free icecream. I enjoyed it a lot!

Truong & Marco Gelato

Furthermore I climbed very little. I think I climbed 8 routes, divided over 4 days.

Random finding some rocks

Val Lomasone, click on this photo for a bigger view

Awesome butterflies

Nice stack of stones

Butterflies digg Boreal

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We ran into lots of cyclists in Italy. We even got blocked by the organisation when we were on our way to a lake. Well, we had a nice time supporting them to kill our time.

Supporting cyclists

Supporting cyclists!

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Obviously as you can see I climbed very little and don’t even have a climbing picture. This time I just felt like a mini holiday at Italy. It was unforgettable. Jort, thank you for the nice time.

Lately I have been busy with team training, climbing at different climbing gyms, work and other hobbies. My schedule seems quite busy. I noticed that I haven’t been climbing outdoors much this year. It’s time to change that fact.

My journey is already planned on this map. I just need to make it happen!

On my way to Arco, Italy

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