Just to get that dose of adrenalin before you open your inbox!
With a quick visit from N for work purposes, a morning outing needed to be planned. So after morning ski touring comes morning ferrata ! Just to get that dose of adrenalin before you open your inbox.
There are several easily accessible ferratas around Grenoble, but to be back for work (9 am!) it couldn’t be too far. Having already done the ferrata at Crolles during Grenoble-Season I, we decided to do a repeat. Often called ferrata de Crolles its real name is Ferrata de la Cascade de l’Oule. It’s a simple but aesthetic path with several different itineraries, the most beautiful of which goes under the waterfall. The different routes can be seen on the official web page, as well as other information (it closes in the winter so make sure to check). The way we did it, is to start at the top, at St Hilaire du Touvet, and after running down a small path towards Crolles, turn back before climbing up. This saves quite a lot of time and means you finish close to the end (especially important for a morning dash!)
The actual itinerary we took starts off with a small traverse and some sections of down-climbing, before arriving at the waterfall. The view from here is spectacular, with the Gresivaudan valley laid out in front and the long line of Belledone range behind. A fresh shower wakes you up for the morning activities, and as you dry off its often possible to see several paragliders slowly circling down from the take-off zone just above.
After a few minutes of pause comes the second part of the climb, which is much steeper. Called Le Diedre, it is marked as ED or Extrêmement difficile. Thankfully this has nothing to do with the degrees used in alpinism and although it is pretty vertical there are no technical difficulties. One small overhang halfway up demands strong arms but that’s all. The ferrata goes up the face, giving an ever higher view of the surroundings. As always with, if you do get tired you can always clip in and rest before continuing. This wasn’t the case for us, as we were running against the clock! Up through the ladders, along some more traverse, before a small path took up back to the car park. Off came the kit, and 20 minutes later I was at my desk.