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09/18/08. Traumpfeiler (V+, 9P) on Heiliger Geist
Pillar Of Dreams.
This route is a real piece of eye candy especially when you first see it driving the road up to the monasteries – steep and tall. We saw two or three parties on it our first day and knew we’d have to give it a try. Knowing its popularity we were at the base at the early hour of 8:30 in the morning. Two pitches up, two more parties showed up showed up below. The route was indeed great fun: steep but very friendly climbing. The OW crack is well featured and much easier than it looks from below. Awesome views esp. looking down the OW crack pitch and your second! We combined pitches 3 & 4 and 5 & 6 which sped up the outing. The top of the Heiliger Geist (Holy Ghost) formation is a huge sprawling meadow. We hiked the length of it, signed the summit book and rapped down, passing an outdoor church on the way down. Not exactly something you see on Moab
towers… On the hike out we spotted the famous Wahnsinnsverschneidung
or Corner Of Madness
line – apparently the prettiest crack line in Meteora. Indeed, it looked quite nice from below.
09/19/08. Sudostwand (VII-, 6P) on Doupianifels & Archimedes (V, 5P) on Pixari
Sudostwand on Doupianifels.
We woke up late – the copious amounts of wine that we’ve been consuming with every dinner might have been to blame – and couldn’t quite make up our minds as to what to go for. Finally, we decided on trying the 3/3-star Sudowastwand route on Doupiani Rock…the 30-second approach was hard to argue against. Great fun route. The lower five pitches are sport bolted and the VII- crux was quite friendly as well. Most of the route consists of low angle nubbin pinching and some slabby footwork. Somewhere on the route, a fist sized chunk came off in my hand but I managed to hold on. The route kept giving to the end with the final pitch feeling quite hard for a “V+”. We rapped the route and 10 minutes later were sitting in a taverna sipping fine Greek coffees followed by even finer Greek “Mythos” beers and again trying to decide what to do with the afternoon.
As good as the local pool sounded, Shirley was pushing for more climbing and so we ended up at the base of Archimedes
route on Pixari formation. Shirley thought it would be a good afternoon stroll (not to mention it provides a nice counterbalance to all the phallus-shaped towers we’ve been climbing lately) but I was a bit suspicious of a chimney route put up in the 70s. Looking up at the route did not ease my mind as it looked like an overhanging chimney/OW system. Indeed the first pitch turned out to be a free solo and though easy, set the tone for the rest of the route. By pitch 3 I was wishing I had brought something bigger than my 4.5 Camalot. One or two protection points per 140-foot pitches were not exactly what I had in mind for this “afternoon stroll”. For something that is V+, the chimneys seemed exhilarating. We topped out but ended up not on the guidebook recommended rappel (bringing the guidebook along might help perhaps…). Three double rope raps, some bushwhacking and we were back in one of the tavernas in time for dinner. I had many cuts on my back and my tailbone was bruised and swollen thanks to the conglomerate rock with its many protrusions not visible to one’s ass side when climbing these unique chimneys.
Next day: rain. The day after: more rain…We spent our time in local cafés drinking large quantities of Greek coffee, sightseeing the monasteries, and even doing a bit of web surfing.
Starting up pitch 1 of Traumpfeiler (Pillar Of Dreams) route on Heiliger Geist (Holy Ghost; Sept. 2008).
Leading pitch 2 (Sept. 2008).
Nearing the second belay (Sept. 2008).
Shirley on pitch 2 of Traumpfeiler (Sept. 2008).
Shirley nearing the top of pitch 2 of Traumpfeiler route on Holy Ghost (Sept. 2008).
Some wanker at the second belay (Sept. 2008).
Starting the lead of pitch 3 of Traumpfeiler (we combined 3 & 4; Sept. 2008).
Higher on pitch 3 (Sept. 2008).
Leading pitches 3 and 4 of Traumpfeiler – the dreamy Pillar Of Dreams on the Holy Ghost Tower (Sept. 2008).
Shirley on pitches 3 and 4 (Sept. 2008).
Shirley on pitch 4 of Traumpfeiler (Pillar Of Dreams) with another party atop P2 below (Sept. 2008).
More of Shirley on pitch 4 (Sept. 2008).
Leading pitch 5 of Traumpfeiler – friendly (as in not too steep) conglomerate knob edging in an amazing position (Sept. 2008).
Looking back towards Shirley at the hanging belay atop pitch 4 of Traumpfeiler (Sept. 2008).
Shirley at the fifth belay (Sept. 2008).
Leading pitch 6 of Traumpfeiler (Sept. 2008).
Looking back at Shirley from the lower angle 7th pitch of Traumpfeiler (Sept. 2008).
Views from the eighth belay (Sept. 2008).
Shirley topping out on pitch 8 which I think we had combined with pitch 7 (Sept. 2008).
Yours truly at the belay atop the 8th pitch of Traumpfeiler route (Sept. 2008).
Shirley at the 8th belay (Sept. 2008).
Shirley arriving on the summit of The Holy Ghost; ninth pitch of Pillar Of Dreams (Sept. 2008).
Yours truly atop the Traumpfeiler route on the summit ridge of the Holy Ghost. Moni Varlaam is on the left & Moni Agias Varvaras Rousanou is on the right (at least I think…Sept. 2008).
Doupianifels from the summit of Heiliger Geist (Sept. 2008).
The view of the Kelch formation from the summit of the Holy Ghost after our climb of Traumpfeiler route (Sept. 2008).
Shirley hiking the summit ridge of the Holy Ghost towards the rappels down the Weg des Wassers route (Sept. 2008).
An outdoor church at the base of the Weg des Wassers route on the Holy Ghost. You literally rappel into this area as you’re coming down from the top of Holy Ghost (Sept. 2008).
Shirley hiking down after rapping off the Holy Ghost. The outdoor church is behind her and reaching it requires some class 3 scrambling for the faithful (Sept. 2008).
Corner Of Madness (Wahnsinnsverschneidung) route on The Holy Ghose (Sept. 2008).
A Meteora native (Sept. 2008).
South face of Doupianifels with the Ostkante (VI, on right) and Sudostwand (VII-) routes highlighted. Note the ton of climbers on the former and a single climber atop the latter (Sept. 2008).
Leading pitch 1 of Sudostwand (VII-) on Doupianifels (Sept. 2008).
Shirley starting up Sudostwand route (Sept. 2008).
Heiliger Geist (Holy Ghost) and the smaller Heiliggeistwachter formations as seen from the Sudoustwand route on Doupianifels (Sept. 2008).
Arriving at the first belay (Sept. 2008).
Starting up pitch 2 (Sept. 2008).
Shirley on pitch 2 (Sept. 2008).
View of Kastraki village (Sept. 2008).
Shirley topping out on pitch 2 of Sudostwand (Sept. 2008).
Shirley at the second belay (Sept. 2008).
Shirley topping out on pitch 3 of Sudostwand. This is the largest “cave” you encounter on this route (Sept. 2008).
Huge caves atop pitch 3 of Sudostwand (VII-) route on Doupianifels (Sept. 2008).
Starting pitch 4 of Sudostwand (Sept. 2008).
The crux pitch (number 4) of Sudostwand (VII-, 6P) on Doupianifels. Kastraki village is below and Pindos Mountains are further back (Sept. 2008).
Shirley following pitch 5 which we had combined with 4 (Sept. 2008).
Leading pitch 6 to the summit (Sept. 2008).
Shirley hiking in to the Archimedes route on Pixari – the giant chimney on the right. Sourloti is on the left (Sept. 2008).
Getting closer (Sept. 2008).
A view of Kastraki village and Sourloti formation (largest in photo) from the approach to Archimedes on Pixari (Sept. 2008).
View of Sourloti (Sept. 2008).
Leading pitch 1 (Sept. 2008).
Shirley nearing at the first belay (Sept. 2008).
Shirley arriving at the first belay (Sept. 2008).
Starting up pitch 2 (Sept. 2008).
Shirley entering the deep chimney on pitch 2 of Archimedes route on Pixari. Village of Kastraki is below (Sept. 2008).
Leading the pitch 3 chimney on Archimedes (Sept. 2008).
Views from inside the giant yoni (Sept. 2008).
Shirley on pitch 3 (Sept. 2008).
More pitch 3 action from Shirley (Sept. 2008).
Pitch 4 of Archimedes starts with a nice horizontal chimneying out above the void (Sept. 2008).
Starting pitch 4 of Archimedes. Shirley belaying from a nice boulder embedded in the sidewall of the chimney (Sept. 2008).
Moving along. Same wild pitch – chimney traverse out and then up (Sept. 2008).
Shirley following pitch 4 of Archimedes line on Pixari belayed by yours truly (Sept. 2008).
Shirley on pitch 4 of Archimedes – the cool outward/horizontal chimney traverse followed by a series of (easy) stem moves over the void to the belay. A great route (Sept. 2008).
Leading pitch 5 (Sept. 2008).
Shirley topping out on pitch 5 of Archimedes and the summit of Pixari (Sept. 2008).
Shirley on the summit of Pixari (Sept. 2008).
View from the summit of Pixari after our climb of its Archimedes route. Sourloti (with many classic ~6-pitch lines) is on the left and Modi is on the right (Sept. 2008).
Sourloti formation as seen from summit of Pixari. Hypotenuse climbs the face diagonally from left to right. Climbers are visible on the final pitch of Linie Des Fallenden Tropfens. Click for full res. (Sept. 2008).
Summit register (Sept. 2008).
Shirley coiling ropes on the summit of Pixari after our climb of Archimedes. In background (behind Shirley) is the Holy Ghost formation (the backside of it). The obvious ledge with trees is home to an outdoor church (which rap into when descending the Holy Ghost…how Euro!! Sept .2008).
More views from summit (Sept. 2008).
Village of Kastraki (Sept. 2008).
Pixari with its hermitages (Sept. 2008).
The positively anti-phallic Archimedes line on Pixari (Sept. 2008).
Heading back for some table wine (Sept. 2008).
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