Un rapide compte rendu de ce nième stage de glace, stage attendu par beaucoup chaque année.
Cela fait plus de 20 ans que ça dure ( avec des fois 1 stage aux vacances de noël) , et depuis qq années ce stage/ rassemblement frôle le nombre de 70 participants, capacité max que je me donne.
Petit historique .. pourquoi autant ? …
Ĺe premier stage cascade était du Caf Toulouse un Noël 2001 pour les jeunes de 10 à 18, époque des - 20 degrés et surtout des jeunes motivés .. avec même 2 stages par an, Noël et février....
Ensuite à partir de 2005, les jeunes et cadres du groupe espoir alpinisme Midi Pyrénéen sont venus ..30 participants
Puis pour optimiser la présence des guides, mise en place de la formation initiateur glace, ce qui me permettait d’avoir des cadres pour les jeunes, et des cobayes pour les cadres (quoique avec certains jeunes on ne sait pas trop qui est qui) ..Nous étions alors vers 2010 une grosse cinquantaine en comptant le second groupe espoir alpinisme Midi Pyrénées de Éric Gérardin...
A partir de Noël 2011 , étant membre de la commission jeunes UIAA pour la FFCAM, je propose ce stage. Les jeunes étrangers viennent alors de partout, inde, japon, Mongolie, Nepal , AFS, Iran, etc
Pour ajouter la participation des filles de l'équipe alpi féminine pyrénéenne EPAF, d’où les 71 actuel
A ce stage 2023, 17 UIAA (4 roumains, 4 croates , 4 de Lituanie, 1 Belge, 3 Espagne, 1 UK), 07 jeunes école aventure Toulouse, 17 adultes en formation initiateurs cascade de glace (plus les jeunes des groupes espoirs ) l’EPAF et les 2 équipes mixtes espoir aquitaine ..
Les Pyrénées et l’Europe occupent les hautes alpes, avec la participation de 12 cadres et 4 guides dont Christophe Moulin le local et Conseiller Technique Alpinisme de la FFCAM ….
Conditions moyennes, ça fond .. soleil, assez de froid ; mais le nombre de sites reste limités, surtout en terme de grandes voies .. ceillac, aiguilles, Les Ores, Crevoux, Cervieres,, un peu freissinieres .. .,
Profitant de la présence des 4 guides et de nombreux instructeurs alpi il y aura plusieurs formations pendant ce rassemblement :
- 2 formations glace UVT et Initiateur pour 18 UVT reçus et 14 inscrits initiateur(11 reçus) et 15 UVT et 20 inscrits initiateur ( 12 reçus)
- Une UFCA (30)
- Une UF Technique glace (5 jeunes)
- Et Une formation NA2 (28 ?), formation que vp de jeunes étrangers auraient voulu suivre ..comme indiqué dans les divers « report » ci après.
Voir ces CR des jeunes UIAA (merci à eux) en suivant , avec qq idées d’amélioration..
Mais pour moi l’important, enfin le crux, c’ est de durer.. et tout nouveau stage organisé un an de plus, c’est progresser..
Organsiner ce stage, c’est plus de 1000 mails, 6 jours pleins de taf avant et qq uns après …
Mais ce que j’en retiens surtout c’est le plaisir de guider et voir évoluer dans le Y à Ceillac (7 longueurs ; 250 m) , pour la première fois de leur vie, une cordée avec Maria roumaine, Tadas Lituanien et Gérard Espagnol …ouais là on a plaisir et on oublie le taf et la fatigue ..
Merci à l’auberge de jeunesse de Guillestre sans laquelle rien ne serait possible, et tout le staff, une bande de potes ..
Les photos : le lien de mon album partagé
Qq photos jointes
Le CR d’Alex stagiaire Initiateur :
Le CR d’anna, spain :
Hello Bibi, Pierre, Coralie,
I would like to take this moment to thank you for the great opportunity that it has been for me coming in the International Youth Ice Climbing Camp. I have spent great days, with amazing people and learning a lot. I came without almost no knowledge about ice climbing, and now I see myself enough confident to go in my own with more autonomy. Also, always taking care of the safety.
This camp has led to learn many forms of ice climbing, one pitch, many pitches and dry tooling in a great place as it is Hautes Alps. It has helped me to meet more people in love for climbing and mountaineering. All the staff were great qualified, with good abilities to teach and share their (your) knowledge. Everybody has been thoughtful, kind, and helpful at all times.
Once again, I am sincerely grateful for this great opportunity and warm welcome.
Keep up the excellent work and for more many years this camp can be possible to exist.
Cr de Dragos Roumain en PJ ;..
Ice climbing in France
as seen by Dragos Burea from the Romanian Alpine Club CAR
For the Romanian delegation it all started on a Saturday night when we were picked up from the Toulouse airport by a man who I didn't know at that time, but soon proved to be the mastermind behind this entire camp 😊 We were kindly offered a place to sleep in his house and everything we needed to make this one night stay as welcoming as possible. Many thanks for that, Bibi! Very much appreciated! As we flew in and didn't have a transportation method, Bibi was kind enough to lent us his personal car to use it the entire time we were there. It would've been much harder for us without it!
The camp official began on a Sunday when we drove, among other participants, from Toulouse to Guillestre. Once arrived at Auberge de Jeunes, we were given some time to settle in and unpack and then we went to a briefing session. We were explained the rules of the chalet, such as: where to get the cutlery and dishes from, where to put the dirty dishes, how to arrange the table for eating and how to clean it afterwards. I liked the fact that everything was very well organized and chaos was very well avoided.
The entire UIAA delegation spent the first day of climbing at Aiguilles, an artificial ice climbing spot, perfect for initiation. We were split into teams and every team was given an instructor. We were lucky enough to have Vivian as our instructor. He proved to be a very cool and kind guy who paid attention to what we were doing. After some top ropes, he allowed us to lead 2 easy routes. This was my first ice climbing lead and I was very excited about it! We also did a lot of practice abalakovs which were very helpful.
Later that day, at the evening briefing sessions, the UIAA participants were split into teams and sent to different locations. For me it was Ceillac on the Y waterfall, a very nice initiation multipitch.
For the next 2 days we couldn’t have had a better guide than Max. With a lot of humor he was able to give us a lot of confidence in what we were doing, whilst still paying a close attention to our ice screw placement and belays.
Getting back to the Y multipitch. It was the perfect place to gain confidence in ice screw belays and leading on ice in general. It was easy enough to practice placements, swings and movement, but hard enough to be satisfied by the end of the day.
Third day we went to Cervieres, an awesome spot located 1 hour drive from Guillestre and 1-and-a-half-hour hike. The hike was totally worth it once we saw the spot from distance: a wall covered in both ice and mixed routes. This was my favorite day by far! Max told me and my partner Papa that he is there if we need him, but we can do anything we want! We both led a very nice small icefall and then we moved on to some top ropes on very spectacular mixed routes. Those mixed routes where the cherry on the cake. Dry tooling followed by ice climbing. Fantastic!
Forth day was about Pelouses, the hardest and most vertical icefall we had the chance to top rope in France. It was a long hike to get to it, but again totally worth it. We were guided by Christophe Moulin, an ice climbing legend. It was really an honor to hang with him and learn from his experience. The ice was crazy! Our forearms were burning after a few laps on it. We soon realized that our target one day will be to lead that!
Fifth and last day of climbing, at the briefing session we were told that if we want, we can choose were to go. Me and Papa chose Ceillac again and did the Easy Rider and Y. It was a very pleasant day where we got the chance to climb again 2 multipitch routes and enjoy every moment of it.
Saturday, the last day of camp, came unexpectedly…we took the time to have a coffee and a croissant in a local Guillestre patisserie and then drove back to Toulouse. Our story begins the same place where it started, at Bibi's place, having a very nice pizza party whilst discussing the time spent in the camp.
Summarizing it all, the camp exceeded my expectations by far! It was very obvious that the organizers knew what they were doing and nothing was at random. I really look forward to other camps organized by this people because I will know from the very beginning that it will all be awesome!
There is only one thing I would've liked to be done, and that is having some workshops in English as well, like avalanche training, DVA practice and general mountain safety.
CR de Mantas lituanie :
The week at the camp was amazing!
Each day we were assigned one of the many amazing instructors, and he would responsable for you for that day. As there were max 2 people per instructor, you got plenty of attention, and other instructors also did not hesitate to give feedback. Different instructors had different styles and observations, so you learn multiple different ways to achieve the same goal and can choose the most suitable for you. It was also really cool that the instructors were not just observers - they were climbing with you, you can improve just observing their technique and asking questions.
It also was really nice that at the beginning of the camp we got reminded of basics - how to tie in, how to belay, etc. as well as some ice climbing stuff - how to hold ice-axe, how to choose where and how to strike the ice, how to put ice screw - which was really nice as it allowed to get up to speed and feel comfortable during all the camp. Then following days we got assigned a place to go, with new routes to try out, based on our performances during previous days. The conditions each day were different - from wet to hard ice, from sun to snow, and we had to adapt each day. And it is crazy how much we managed to improve during the camp - from never touching the ice, to top-roping vertical 50 meter pitches.
In general, the experience in the real mountains also was very useful, as it allowed us to indirectly learn the basics things that are not being taught - what things to pack for the day-trip, how to organize gear on the harness, what are the old habits that we should avoid, etc.
The international atmosphere also was amazing - as there were people from France, Romania, Spain, Croatia you had the opportunity to learn about different cultures and learn to cooperate in the international team, as well as make new friends for future adventures. We all lived in the same camp, so in the evenings, as everyone returned from their day climb, we were able to share our experiences from different places.
Everything felt very well organized - every evening you knew what you will be going to do the next day, you knew what people will be going with you and when you will be leaving and returning. The time also was well organized - we had enough time to arrive at the camp and return home, even travelling by car.
Some things that I think we could be improved:
There was a bit of confusion at first days - in the beginning of the briefings everyone was speaking in French, so did not understand anything and did not know what was happening. Later we figured it out, but it would be better if at the start of the camp we would be informed that at first you will discuss in French and then someone will translate it to English.
Some training that the instructors had seemed very interesting - for example the avalanche training - it would be great if the participants would also have these kinds of training.
In general, we really enjoyed the camp, and would love to stay for longer or to return to this or other camps. Thanks for organizing it!
CR de Danijel ; croate :
First I want to thank You for organizing the camp. But I think I was at the wrong place at the wrong time. Not because the camp was bad, but because of the miscommunications in our Alpine clubs and Mountain association. Truth to be told, If you have more than 5 waterfalls climbed or one or two alpine routes in winter conditions the camp would be boring and uninteresting, but that was not the point of the whole Camp because we learned during the camp that it is meant for beginners and people who never touched ice. Two of my frineds, who never climbed ice really enjoyed it a lot.
I like the concept of the camp where people from different countries come and learn basic moving on the ice ,swinging and anchor points. One thing got me... There should be a little more talking about proper placement of the Ice screws, because I saw how people place the Ice screws ( I know that they were total beginners) in some bad spots ( Rotten ice , fragile thin ice ) but luckily no one fell and everyone went happy to their homes.
Also, it is little confusing when everybody have a briefing at the same time, It's hard to follow what is happening in between changing from french to english and back to french. It would be better to have brifings at separate times ( But I understand that would be more tiring).
The instructors were very pleasent and comunicative and I like how they work with people and talking about anchors, climbing and gear.
It was understandable that the conditions were horrible and it would be much better and fun to have proper winter conditions, and I am thankful that you tried your best to organize that we get as much ice as we can.
Thank you once again for organizing and inviting us to the camp, I would recommend it to Ice climbing beginners in my Alpine club... if I was total beginner the camp would be 15/10 :)
Danijel Salopek (Alpine club Željezničar, Zagreb)