La Tête du Lion
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The English guidebook, “Selected Rock Climbs in Belgium and Luxembourg” by Chris Craggs, published in 1994, suggest this about the route, "A hoary classic, now showing its age, but still worth doing."
"Nudge nudge, wink wink": indeed!
A fun, three pitch route up the skinny edge of the lion. This is the original route on the Tête du Lion with a fair bit of polish to attest for its historical time in the spotlight.
The first pitch is a 5.4-ish scramble for around 60 feet to a fixed belay located under the roof area. Clamber up the toe of the ridge initially on a low angle ramp, then, slightly steeper on secure holds.
The second pitch, the crux, ascends towards the roof then jogs back to the left following the line of bolts across slippery, reachy holds with poor footing. Rumor has folks employ a bit of pulling on the fixed protection to gain distance on this pitch in a spot or two. Suffice to say, the free climbing is difficult and might be reasonably graded at 5.9 A0. Pitch is short at maybe 40 or so feet.
The last pitch rallies up the lower angle easy terrain to the summit. Exposed with nice views of the river and valley. 4th class. 60 feet of scrambling leads to the top of the lion.
Route is located on the western edge of the Meuse Face, right on the arête and/or just to the climbers’ left of the edge of the arête. Look for a very well worn path up the low angle ramp to a fixed belay anchor which is the first pitch.
Descent: traverse crest of the ridge until the low point is reached. Keep the rope on for the less inspired as the scenery really falls off in either direction. From the lowest spot on the ridge, a slippery, exposed down climb can be done to the north (might be difficult to do on site) to a trail which leads either back up to the road or back to the base of the route. Alternately, there’s a rappel from fixed anchors leading back to the south side and the Meuse Face then around to the base of the route, or, to the trail which leads back up to the rim.
8 or so quick draws and a single 50 or 60m rope adequate for this route.
La Tête du Lion climbs the left edge of this face
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