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[caption id="attachment_5213" align="aligncenter" width="400"] A stylish belay...without bolts![/caption]

Some loose stones were thrown to the void and a couple of hours later I arrived to the intermediate “Balcony” on the high part of the wall, which allows to escape (or access) comfortably, a beautiful creation of Mother Nature.

In the future line, inspected from the top, I left a belay and a few scattered bolts in the most exposed and difficult places to protect.

The initial plan consisted in inspecting the line from above, all the way till the sea level. But on the balcony, I reconsidered. Did I fell like going with this "cheating" style, all along the wall?

[caption id="attachment_5214" align="aligncenter" width="450"] Landscape from the cliff of Pinheirinhos[/caption]

In Pinheirinhos, to date, there were various styles of opening routes. The few sport climbing lines, by definition, were equipped from above. There are also some "classic/trad" that were semi-bolted from above and only then climbed, but the majority of the routes were open from below, on sight, and many of the bolts there were placed by hand, using the energy of "handwork".

After a few minutes of reflection, I concluded that it would be best to go home and return another time, with the motivation to climb that new route from below. Ethically, unquestionably, that would be the correct way.

So, in a properly cool day, Daniela and I packed the gear and went for the quest of one more route.

With our eyes and imagination, we draw a line along the cliff all the way up, on the left space between the "Relative Humidity" and "Who goes there?". It looked like a technically demanding line, because it followed vertical slabs apparently without cracks. Above, we could perceive a section of overhanging yellow limestone, which seemed complicated. Certainly a "tough cookie".

[caption id="attachment_5215" align="aligncenter" width="450"] On the first pitch of the future route[/caption] [caption id="attachment_5216" align="aligncenter" width="400"] Iniciating an excelent second pitch[/caption] [caption id="attachment_5217" align="aligncenter" width="400"] Daniela almost ending the second pitch[/caption] [caption id="attachment_5218" align="aligncenter" width="400"] The second pitch with the sea below our feet[/caption]

I felt glad not to have succumbed to the laziness of recognizing that section of the wall from above. Being perfectly honest, I believe that recognizing, cleaning and equipping from above, is an ungraceful way of climbing. Something to be relatively less valued. If there was a grade for the "style" of opening routes - as the grades we use to enhance the degree of difficulty - a route recognized from above, would merit a much lower value, when compared with a route opened entirely from below.

[caption id="attachment_5219" align="aligncenter" width="450"] Starting the third pitch, the crux of this line, a hard vertical slab opened with the help of aids. On another day we were back for the FFA.[/caption] [caption id="attachment_5220" align="aligncenter" width="450"] On the spectacular third pitch, on the day it was first climbed[/caption]

A proposal to classify the style adopted in a first ascent could be, for example, "Grade A" for routes opened from below "on sight", and "Grade B" for routes recognized and bolted from above. It could sound a bit strange, but at least we would have one more piece of information about the history of the route.

After this verbiage about perfect and imperfect styles, I must say that in some of the lines I opened, I went for the lazy style of "Grade B". However, I also have to recognize that I had some enjoyment on climbing these routes without the usual stress of the unknown, of the loose rocks. I had some enjoyment on going with light and optimized equipment, calculated in advance, thanks to the "poor" strategy of preparation, after rappelling the whole route.

In the first push, Daniela and I opened the first two pitches. After a couple of days, we returned to finish it, and it was the third pitch that presented the maximum difficulties. Using the machine and some aid climbing we overcame the hardest section of the line, a compact vertical slab, now with minimal bolts.

[caption id="attachment_5221" align="aligncenter" width="450"] Third pitch[/caption] [caption id="attachment_5222" align="aligncenter" width="400"] The last pitch, to relax and enjoy the views[/caption] [caption id="attachment_5223" align="aligncenter" width="400"] "Check!"[/caption]

On another day we returned, as l wanted to free the whole route, and I found an awesome succession of pretty hard moves, with an obligatory crux in a traverse, protected by a lonely piton - to give some color to that climb!

[caption id="attachment_5224" align="aligncenter" width="450"] Repeating the route, Daniela enjoys the last pitch.[/caption]

We baptized the new creation as "Invera", which is the fusion of the words winter and spring in Portuguese, INverno + PrimaVERA.

On that day, we took our chances and were still able to climb another new line on the upper part of the wall, starting in the intermediate “Balcony”. The one that I started this story with, the one equipped from above, the one that can be classified as “Grade B”.

After several hours of “fighting”, we inaugurated the "V.A.n.N." (code name **) that has a long first pitch with grotesque and intimidating formations, and a second one to escape, a lot easier and shorter.

[caption id="attachment_5226" align="aligncenter" width="400"] On the first ascent of V.A.n.N.[/caption]

Are therefore explained, the considerations and reflections related to the last two routes added to the collection of the ones on the wall of Pinheirinhos.

Routes of "Grade A and B".

Paulo Roxo

[caption id="attachment_5227" align="aligncenter" width="450"] Summit again![/caption]

The topos: