Bouldering | Why Switzerland?

Why Switzerland?

I don’t know what it is about this country, but Switzerland has me hooked. I still wonder today why this place lures me, year after year, more than anywhere else in the world.  While I give myself 3 good reasons to go elsewhere, I find 6 to go back.


Friends are constantly saying to me ‘that place must be pretty good’ or ‘why are you going back again?’ and most of the time I respond with, “it is” or “because it’s that good”. But when I really try and understand why I love it so much, I struggle. It’s expensive, the conditions can be fickle, it’s not new, and I’m left fewer things to climb each time I visit. But still, I keep coming back.

You can appreciate anything if you experience it for long enough, that much I know. But Brione is an instant hit for everyone, I have taken many people there for their first time bouldering in Switzerland. It’s hard not to be in awe of the enormous grey and orange boulders that litter the turquoise river running down the valley. It’s hard not to stand in awe at the enormous Verzasca Dam, which James Bond once flew from in the film ‘Goldeneye’. It’s also hard not to find yourself staring off into the distance.

From a climbing perspective boulder problems like Bach Bloc (7C) combine some of the best rock with a soaring line and topout to create a truly brilliant problem. While Vecchio Leone (8B) represents one of the best hard boulder problems in the world. Perfect rock, a stunning line, and physical movement, all with some history thrown in. Problems such as the classic ‘Black Mirror Slab’ and Brione Arete, both 6B, provide some of the most interesting arete and slab climbing to be found. These are where 5-star photographs are made!

While not quite so well thought of as Brione, Chironico is still a special place. Stretching from some shaded and waterworn river boulders, up to some incredible features on the top of a sunny hillside, it is a classy area. There are little pieces of brilliance littered across the hill that stand out for rock, movement, and aesthetics. Nobody ist der Größte (7B) has some of the best slopers anywhere outside of Fontainebleau, and ‘Freak Brothers’ is one of the most striking features anywhere in the world. Navigating to these gems becomes the key of truly appreciating Chironico, instead of getting drawn into finger shredding rock and leaving with a chip firmly placed on your shoulder.

Another lesser known gem is Die Roboter (5+) which again provides some great rock with a line and moves that would make it a classic anywhere. To me, Chironico is a place with a lot of untold character. It has so many little areas that they can feel totally different and separate from each other. This to me makes it even more enjoyable to wander around from zone to zone, taking in everything this place has to offer. I have spent many a day aimlessly wandering around Chironico only to stumble upon something brilliant that I had never seen before. Slabs, aerates, little roofs, Chironico has them all.

Cresciano is the area of Ticino with the most history in terms of Bouldering. It hosts the worlds first 8C, the legendary ‘Dreamtime’ from Fred Nicole, as well as a whole hillside worth of bouldering, that would last anyone a lifetime. Of all three areas, Cresciano is perhaps the most tranquil. Stretching a kilometre across a chestnut covered hillside, it’s hard not to be lured into the endless array of perfect boulders, even when you have an objective for your day. Cresciano is the perfect area for running around and climbing 4’s, 5s and 6’s, using only a small mat to move from boulder to boulder, getting as much movement as possible into your day. While Chironico may slightly favour the strong fingered climber, Cresciano is undoubtedly suited to the technical climber. The smooth, much more rounded features lend themselves to some thought, some cunning, and a good amount of trust in friction. The perfect place to begin to hone your skills. This is all before you talk about the incredible views down the valley into the famous town of Bellinzona, with it’s 3 medieval castles. Cresciano really is the jewel in the crown of Swiss bouldering.

When I begin to think of reasons to go back to Switzerland, I quickly think of a few more, and then a few more. It’s a special place, that truly deserves it’s acclaim.

Bouldering Ticino

Intrepidus Outdoors and Eliot Stephens have come together to offer a unique bouldering coaching holiday in March 2019. Experience Ticino, Switzerland, one of the World’s most famous bouldering destinations, under the guidance of one of Britain’s top boulderers.

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Intrepidus Outdoors is an adventure tourism provider based in Edinburgh, Scotland. We specialise in canyoning, coasteering, canoeing and mountain biking. We deliver these adventurous experiences across Scotland as well as providing international trips.


Intrepidus Outdoors

Intrepidus Outdoors specialises in Outdoor Activites Edinburgh. We are a adventure tourism and outdoor education provider based in Edinburgh. We specialise in canyoning, coasteering, mountain biking and hill walking, and deliver these adventurous experiences across Scotland and the North of England. The experiences that we provide take clients into some of the most exquisite, incredible and extreme environments the UK has to offer.

Mission Statment :

To deliver the highest quality adventurous experiences to entertain, thrill and inspire.

Outdoor Activities Edinburgh & Scotland

Our values reflect those of a business started by a small group of rock climbers and mountain bikers. The experiences that we have had adventuring, and our passion for the outdoors, has led us to choose a lifestyle dedicated to sharing our love for the outdoors with others. The approach that we take to the experiences that we provide, and the business that we run, is that of sustainability, and an unapologetic quest for quality.

For us at Intrepidus Outdoors, we recognise that our experiences kayaking in clean rivers, surfing on unpolluted beaches and climbing frozen waterfalls have contributed to who we are as people. Therefore, protecting the planet so that the next generation of adventurers can have their own experiences, is hugely important for us. We believe that for people, communities and businesses to make the choice to minimise their impact on our planet, they must first value the planet that we have. We feel that the best way for people to value our blue planet, is to have first hand quality experiences in nature. They can then see the beauty of a forest, feel the power of an ocean and learn to love what is outside our towns and cities, so that they then fight to protect them. We strive to through the products that we deliver make a small difference to peoples understanding of the impact that they have on our world.

Our experiences adventuring have made us who we are and Intrepidus Outdoors is a reflection of us. We provide real adventurous experience that we hope you will cherish.

Adventure Activities Edinburgh & Scotland

There are cities where stuff is happening all year round and where you will never get bored. Edinburgh is undoubtedly one of these cities. It’s an extraordinary place, full of history, festivals, impressive architecture and plenty of attractions you won’t find anywhere else. Not to mention that we are located on the door step of so many amazing adventures and outdoor experiences.

We would like to introduce you to this extraordinary city, giving you a full range of possibilities that can be found north of the wall! Edinburgh has a huge dose of beautiful history, world-famous festivals, fantastic attractions, adrenaline fuled expereinces and great food. Edinburgh is calling you and you simply cannot refuse its invitation.

There are a many outdoor and adventurous experiences to be had in Edinburgh. If you are a thrill seeker visiting Edinburgh and interested in a canyoning, coasteering or mountain biking adventure in Scotland, Get In Touch!

Outdoor Adventures Scotland

It’s no secret that Scotland is one of the most beautiful countries in the world. From the rural coastlines to vast mountain ranges, we have it all.

Whatever kind of experience you’re after you’re sure to find it here, so we’ve put together an adventurer’s guide to Scotland to help get you started. Our guide breaks down all the outdoor activities Edinburgh has to offer and many more adventures to keep you entertained on your holdiay.

To read more check out our adventures guide to Scotland [here]

Check out our Trip Advisor, Youtube channel, Visit Scotland page and blog to hear about how others found their outdoor adventure with Intrepidus outdoors and to see what we do!


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