We haven’t been bouldering too much lately. Mainly because we don’t have to. Sport climbing around Vienna is pretty damn good and many of the crags are closer than bouldering areas (which actually are not that far either). However, we did an exception for a day, just to try some limestone blocks.
Merkenstein is one of the best known bouldering areas around Vienna. There are a lot of boulders in this area, most of the guidebook's 1000 boulder problems are here. We checked out just one sector, and it was enough to convince me about the quality.
This was the first time we did some bouldering on limestone, and it’s quite different to granite. Climbing is very dynamic. Holds are usually better than on granite, but as the angles of the lines are often very steep, climbing feels more like an indoor climbing. Grading feels also much harder. On the other hand, this seems to be the case with sport climbing as well, so it might be because we are just not used to Austrian limestone.
Here are the pics.
According to the guidebook the approach is 3 minutes. I'm not sure if we parked too far but it took about 20 minutes for us.
Uga aga iga 6C. Only jugs in this problem, but I still couldn't do it! Swedish bouldering grades are good for your self esteem, but only if you live in Sweden
6A traverse. It was quite dirty and has not been climbed for a long time. Still, one of the best traverses I've done.
Some steep problems at a roof
There are a lot of traverses for lowball -fans in Merkenstein. This was a 7A+
6C+ crack. Jamming in limestone cracks is so painful!
A big roof with some glued-in holds
This is one of the most climbed 6B's around Vienna. Pretty steep for the grade!
A lot of holes in limestone walls, some are quite big
Someone said the forest looks like a zombie-land. I have to admit, it was just like being in Walking Dead
Merkenstein is nice and shady even when it's super hot.
Anu got tired
Enough with bouldering...
Culture act of the day, a castle
Another one, this was in a bit better shape!
Anu was more psyched about the castles than bouldering
Art photo of the day, a zombie house