This February, in Guillestre, near Briançon in the French Alps, the first meeting of the 2020 UIAA Global Youth Series took place. The event, held from 9-15 February, welcomed around 70 participants from across Europe and beyond, all under the expert tutelage and knowledge of the local instructors.

International participants came from across Europe – Germany, Ukraine, Slovenia, Belgium, Great Britain as well as India and those from host country France, where youngsters from the Club Alpine Français, Toulouse, Tarbes and from three regional Pyrenean Alpine teams took part.

The event, held in the stunning paradise location, included a wide variety of activities and a great mix of ice climbing in a number of different locations, catering for both beginners and non-beginners.  Owing to the mix in ages and skill levels, the participants were divided into sub-groups and were able to undertake several forms of climbing, from pitch to multi pitch, to W13 and complex mixed climbing.

The youngsters had the opportunity to spend several days in Aiguilles, a small village in Queyras which has an artificial ice structure, as well as time in Ceillac, Crevoux, Cervieres, Val’d’escriens, Vallon du Fournel and St Véran.  The purpose of the camp was to provide tuition on the all aspects of ice climbing, an approach to how to climb dry tooling; the use of different types of equipment, such as crampons and ice axe, how to make a safe belay as well as several abseils.

The youngsters all had a wonderful time, with the camp providing inexperienced and experienced climbers the opportunity to learn new skills, continue their passion for ice climbing as well as developing new friendships.

Photos from the event can be found here (Christian Biard) and here (Lena Drapella)

For further reading about UIAA Youth Events please click here. On this page organisers can also register events to be showcased on the UIAA’s global rock and ice climbing calendar.

Report courtesy of Christian Biard/UIAA Youth Commission
Photos shown in the article by Lena Drapella