Pohorje Bouldering

Bouldering guidebook around Pohorje

Guidebook covers 5 areas:
Oplotnica, Jurgovo, Bistriški Vintgar, Ožbalt and Mislinja.
Together more then 600 boulder problems.

Rok Klančnik, Miha Dvoršek, Boštjan Potočnik

We are proud to introduce you to the very first Slovenian climbing guidebook dedicated entirely to bouldering in the wider area of Pohorje, a hill full of granite or granite-like rock.

Bouldering is a type of climbing on boulders, generally up to 6 m high (in some extreme cases even more – such boulders are called “high balls”). To prevent injuries, climbers aren’t protected by a rope and a belt, but by a crashpad and a spotter, who helps the climber when he falls and guides him onto safe landing. Bouldering normally takes less time and fewer moves than sport climbing, but the problems are more demanding when it comes to technique and strength.

The beginnings of bouldering can be traced back to the early 20th century in the Fontainebleau area in France. This is where bouldering first became a separate discipline and not only training practice for mountaineering. On Slovenian soil, bouldering started its development after 1990. Some of the pioneers of Slovenian bouldering are Robi Jamnik, Primož Grilec and Uroš Perko, who took to discovering climbing appropriate boulders in Trenta and Topla valleys.

Bouldering in Slovenia used to be limited to climbing on limestone that features sharp edges – “crimps” – but no sufficient friction, otherwise characteristic of granite or sandstone. Another disadvantage of limestone is its wear in case of constant climbing. Limestone climbing was being undertaken in Slovenia as means of climbers keeping themselves in shape and preparing for climbing in other more distant climbing areas with better rock quality. In 2007, the first granite boulders were discovered that were more suitable for bouldering. Rok Šisernik was the one who found the very first granite bouldering area in Ožbalt during his break from climbing. At the same time, other, bigger bouldering areas were being discovered on the other side of Pohorje, where granite was just as suitable for climbing as in Ožbalt. In 2013, five bouldering areas were already discovered in the wider area of Pohorje.

Gathering information from different climbing environments led to the basis for a bouldering guidebook that would contain descriptions of bouldering areas around Pohorje. To make this idea a reality, information had to be verified, boulders overgrown by moss cleaned again and all grades re-evaluated. Of course it has to be taken in consideration that problem grading is of a very subjective nature and can be adapted to general opinion in due time. The development of new bouldering areas took lots of exploration and dealing with landowners with whom we had to talk over the possibility of us climbing on their land. There are many climbing areas where climbing is not allowed anymore due to wanton and reckless behaviour of some climbers. This is why we ask all of you, already in the introduction, to treat nature with respect it deserves, take care of its cleanliness and try not to disturb its natural flow.

Bouldering is a sport that has really been gaining on popularity in the last few years. Nowadays, there is an increase of interest in climbing gyms, while there is only a handful of us climbing around on natural rock. Since climbing is basically a natural sport, the intention of this guidebook is also to invite a broader public of climbers into these beautiful natural bouldering areas that would otherwise remain unknown to most. To develop and maintain natural climbing areas, however, the whole climbing community has to work together. Some help by exploring and cleaning new areas, others gather and forward information about their development. But it is the job of all climbers to visit the areas as frequently as possible and thus keep them alive and give them meaning.

May the POHORJE BOULDERING guidebook become a stone in the mosaic of bouldering development in Slovenia and abroad! Enjoy climbing on Pohorje!

»Tja bi šel, kjer naše bukve košate same zase stojijo, tja čez samotne pohorske frate, kadar po arniki bridki zadišijo. Tam bi med bujno zelenje se vlegel in bi vse žalostne misli izpregel in bi jim rekel : Adijo!«

(Glazer, J.: Pohorje)

Weight: 0.4 kg
Dimensions: 20 x 14.8 x 1.5 cm