As you know, for some time now I have been living permanently in Arco, in Trentino, in an area very popular with climbing enthusiasts, both amateurs and professionals. The beauty of these places and my curiosity always lead me to explore new walls and lately I have often been going to a cliff called Pizarra, in the small hamlet of Ceniga, very close to Arco. It is a flashback for me: the first time I was there was in 2018, for a few days in winter, and on that occasion I was able to complete a couple of routes: “Riflessi” and “Terra Piatta”. In particular, I had climbed Riflessi on the first attempt (flash), with the methods carefully explained by Marco “Kirsch” Erspamer, while I freed Terra Piatta it on the third go. The route was bolted by Alessandro Gandolfo and still remains one of the most beautiful and repeated of the crag, as well as Riflessi, two 8b+ routes which are absolutely recommended.
Almost four years later, I started to going back Pizarra also because my girlfriend Sara really likes it as a wall. Its main feature is that it looks perfectly smooth and therefore apparently with few holds. In reality there are some, but they are very small and hidden and this makes it difficult to understand in advance the routes. In these days I have climbed some routes, on the first attempt I completed the “Riflessi del Rosso” (8b / +) and I tried on sight “Zero Tollernza”, succeeding on the second attempt.
These two routes are quite difficult and I recommend them to more experienced climbers, but still in Pizarra there are others simpler ones and that I highly recommend. For example, some routes I like to do are “Happy Days” and “A posto ciò” graded 6c. These can also be done as a warm-up and are really beautiful: if someone climbs in this area, can’t miss them. They are very similar, with small holds, so they are good either for those who are better or as a main focus for those who are just starting out. I recommend trying both of them: they are crimpy routes.
In addition to these, there are more difficult climbs, for example the 7a “Gitanos”. A traverse to the left, with a different style because it has tufas, so you have to work more with arms and pinches strength rather than fingers. On this wall is the only route of this style, I recommend it to more experienced climbers. Again, increasing the difficulty considerably, there are other routes around 7c and 7c + which are respectively called “Levantate y pelea” and “Surmenage”. These two are slightly overhanging, not very long and therefore very intense. Here too, the strength of fingers is important as there are small crimps and the footholds are just as small and slippery. Finally, the last two climbs that I recommend are “Aguantando El Tiron” and “Schizza talon salta pagliaccio”, 8a+ and 8a respectively, very difficult, intense and technical in the first part, where the strength of the fingers is not enough and also matters the foot position.
As you can see, there are many routes you can do to chsllenge yourself and spend whole day in this crag (the routes I mentioned are only a part of it), one of the most beautiful creag in Arco, smooth and slightly overhanging, which really leaves you breathless. For a few days I have been exploring it far and wide, waiting to dedicate myself to the next events: in particular the European Cup competition scheduled for June4th and 5th right in Arco. So what better time to come here, watch the comp and then climb Pizarra? I wait for you!