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Best Boulder Problems in Fontainebleau / PART 1

Best Boulder Problems in Fontainebleau / PART 1

Fontainebleau is a must visit place for each and every boulderer. It holds a unique combination of extremely technical climbing, beautiful surroundings, easily reachable sectors and lovely history.

Above all "Font", or "Bleau" as the French call it, has a ridiculous amount of problems. It's easy to go there and just start climbing whatever you see. On the other hand if you're aiming for specific grades and especially beautiful ones, some planning is in place.

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When you browse the routes you can mark them "to do". This way you will have your personal list of routes ready when heading to Font!

Here's a PART 1 with some of the most beautiful routes in Font. As always the beauty of a route, just like the grade, is a highly subjective thing. Nevertheless, if you see a problem missing or you don't agree about the beauty of a line mentioned, don't hesitate to leave a comment in the end of the blog! PART 2 can be found here. 


Sector: 95.2

95.2 sector is one of the biggest in Font offering close to 350 problems. In addition to the individual routes, it has plenty of nice circuits for those willing to test their endurance. The boulders dry fast after the rain and it's very suitable for families if the approach is not too long for the little ones. 

Also a small fact in case you're wondering: 95.2 got its name from the height of the hill where majority of the boulders reside.

 Marcin on Retour aux Sources, 7A. Photographer: Michal Stangret / BengaBenga.

Marcin on Retour aux Sources, 7A. Photographer: Michal Stangret / BengaBenga.

  • L'ectoplasme (blue #38) 4+,  M. Mannermaa: Really nice one!
  • Jeu de Dalle (white #8) 6B, M. Uponen: Also without the big hold left close to arete. Sensitive climbing.
  • Grattons Invisible (Red #19) 6B, M. Uponen: "Flash" meaning that as soon as figured out how to get on the wall it went. Did a mantel just before topout.. Very nice slabclimbing :)
  • Looney Tunes 6C
  • Duel dans la Lune 6C N. Telford: Good problem, kinda like gym climbing.
  • Rudeboy 7A, Russ J: Light through the roof - awesome move to top.
  • Retour aux Sources 7A, G. Gear: Another quality 95.2 bloc. Great thuggy/huggy moves on great rock.
  • Les Pieds dans la Lune 7A+, M. Uponen: "Loved this one! Very cool kneebars and holds, trixy! All moves static without slightest dabrisk.
  • Pince-Toi 7A+, M. Uponen: Nice one! Standstart from the most left hold on the left arete! :)
  • Jafesse Connexion Airline 7B, E. Abrahamsson: "Three stars if it was not for the eliminate! Superb dyno anyhow.
  • Sans Dessus Dessous 7B+, N. Vesterlund: "Perfect compression lowball.
  • L'Ange Naïf 7C, T. Hamre: Cool crimpydyno.
  • Symbiose 7C, E. Abrahamsson: Close to midnight sesh, just after a seemingly endless drive. Best lowball I've ever climbed!

Bois Rond

Bois Rond is an old area which has gained more traffic in the past few years. The approach is rather short and Bois Rond offers a good amount of easy and handful of hard (but good) problems to keep the whole crew happy. Newly painted orange and blue circuits are nice addition to the extremely difficult red circuit.

Tip for the approach: some people get confused and actually start walking to a completely wrong direction. Check the right way to approach here. 


Bas Cuvier

Bas Cuvier (Cuvier in short) is maybe the most iconic site at the Forest of Fontainebleau. It is packed with huge amount of problems in variety of grades. Easy access, child friendly terrain and world class boulders attract climbers all over the world.

Cuvier also holds world's first 6A, Marie Rose, which was established in 1946 by René Ferlet. L'Abattoir in the area is also the world's first 7A. Some problems are starting to get polished so be extra careful and clean your shoes before taking on a problem!

Unfortunately due to the popularity the area has also attracted thieves so it's good to pay attention to your valuables.

 Tomek on L'Hélicoptère (7A ) Bas Cuvier. Photographer: Michal Stangret / BengaBenga

Tomek on L'Hélicoptère (7A ) Bas Cuvier. Photographer: Michal Stangret / BengaBenga

  • Dalle Gauche 4+
  • La Sans les Mains 5, N. Bradley: Classic, the essence of Font smearing in one problem for all to try.
  • La V1, Red 16 5, H. Jönsson: Disinct, unusual for font
  • La Nescafe (red #21) 6A, D. Watson: Hard to start, hard to finish. Think I was happy for maybe 2 seconds on this climb, both of them were while stationary. BRILLIANT!
  • Le Trou du Simon 6A, A. Gasic: Once again, one of the hardest 6a I have climbed. Foot work really important.
  • La Marie-Rose 6A, H. Kolk: First opened 6a boulder in Bleau.
  • Les Bretelles, Red 14 6B, N. Lamminmäki: One of the hardest 6B's I've ever done, but thats the font style.
  • Hier Encore 6B+, V. Rossini: Supposed to be a jump. but there's always a static way of climbing jumps :)
  • Audacieux 6C, M. Muinonen: Felt like returning in to womb.
  • Cortomaltèse 6C+, K. Butters: A nice problem when you know the trick.
  • Pif Paf 7A, M. Holma: Great dyno with both hands.
  • L'Hélicoptère 7A, D. Fisher: After summoning the confidence to for the move after seeing a guy drop right onto his back and videos of snapped legs i had a few goes and basically got the move static.
  • La Joker 7A, A. Nilsson: A bit hard possibly, but french beta got it down! 3:rd year trying it.
  • Holey Moley, avec S á D 7A+, M. Preece: One of the best problems I've everdone! Slightly tipsy on beer and with a load of Italians!
  • Le Biceps Mou 7B, S. Andersson: Cramping biceps!, F. Sydstrand: 9th Font trip. Classic sandbag.
  • La super prestat 7B+, T. Hamre: Best slab I've done. Hardest too I guess.
  • L'Aérodynamite 7B+, A. Gasic: Another classic at the same day... Better than in my dreams.
  • Le Carnage 7B+, P. Sjöman: Nice straightforward pulling for the last morning in Font. T. Junttila: Almost a flash. Took only about 120 tries. Hardest route i've ever done by far. Such battle, wow. Dynamic start.
  • La Bérézina (L'Abbé Résina) 7C, K. Boström: Amazing! Sent it quite quickly, the last few times I have been in Font it has felt desperate. K. Hagert: One for the lifetime achievement list! Such nice movement, and the holds are just so perfect!
  • Contrôle Technique 7C+, Paul Robinson: A must do! fell on every single move including the top out at least once! Anthony Gullsten: One of the great font problems!
  • Bérézina-Carnage 7C+, G. Martin: Very, very good. My side's healed.
  • La Balance sans la prise taillée 7C+, T. Hamre: One of those I REALLY wanted to do. Went first try after sticking the jump today. Feels good!
  • Apothèose assis 8A, Alex Khazanov: Nice problem, much harder then the stand start. Did it just after the rain stopped, good vibes!!!!

Buthiers

Buthiers is filled with huge boulders and many of the classic lines are high. Nevertheless Buthiers is still an area for the entire family and there is a newly painted white children's circuit. For others circuit lovers there is a yellow, orange, blue, red and black circuit to choose from. The black one has some exceptionally nice lines, that one could consider to be even the nicest of its grade in Fontainebleau.  Buthiers should definitely be on a must visit list even for a short trip.

 Nick Bradley on La Rampe directe, 7A . Photographer: Rob Lonsdale.

Nick Bradley on La Rampe directe, 7A . Photographer: Rob Lonsdale.

  • La Fissure de l'I 5
  • L'Étrave 6A, T. Junttila: Pure joy. Maybe a little bit horror too.
  • Le Swing Medium 6B, J. Nykänen: Very nice problem!
  • Attention Chef d'Œuvre 7A, J. Annunen: Superb climb! The correct beta is essential, though =)
  • La Rampe 7A, N. Bradley: Put a lot into this. Excellent problem with good moves, had to really work it but it all just clicked in the end.
  • Lady Big Claque / Le Flipper 7A+ , R. Vegter: Nice highball, got my heart rate through the roof.
  • Magic Bus 7B+, F. Abrahamsson: Went right hand to undercling before crimp, probably not easier for most people but definitely easier for me.. E. Abrahamsson: No. Bad line. Leave. But honestly, might be fun if you're short, to me the toe-hook felt crazy contrived. Did it by going straight for the undercling instead.
  • Contrôle A 7C, E. Abrahamsson: Loved it. Fell off the top-out on the flash go.. make sure you put thick pads on the rocks below.
  • Partage 8A+, T. Hamre: Sooo happy. Epic boulder. So much suttlety and so fun to work. Last day best day.

Buthiers Tennis

Buthiers Tennis is a small compact area with some classic problems including a world known traverse Coccinelle 7C+/8A. Approach is about 20 seconds and the area is very family friendly.

Because it's still rather seldom visited some problems have already been re-brushed and some got mossy and forgotten. This is strange considering that the area has a bunch of good problems in all grades!

There is only one circuit, the red one, but man, this one has some gems on it. 
For the stronger climbers you can find problems up to 8A and there are several classic routes like Flagrand Desir, La ligne Blanche and Trojan War just to mention a few. 

 Mikael Uponen wrestling with a rock in Buthiers Tennis.

Mikael Uponen wrestling with a rock in Buthiers Tennis.

Cuisinière Crête Sud

Cuisinière Crête Sud is wrapping Franchard Cuisiniere around from the west and south. The reason for this sector being L-shaped is probably due the infamous Black ED+ -circuit which has 34 problems ranging from 6A to 7B+. In 2017 Nalle Hukkataival climbed this circuit in a day. He climbing all other problems except Duel (8A) on first go (Duel went with 2nd).

Despite the sector's relatively small number of routes, they have a lot of quality packed into them! 

Check out PART 2 including sectors like Franchard Isatis, Franchard Cuisiniere and Cul de Chien!


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*List based on the star rating and ascent amount in 27 Crags together with opinions from climbers who know Font like the back of their hands.


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