Elegy to Masua...

Masua, sun and rocks on a cristal sea. Temple of “plaisir”, easy and relaxing climbing… We could keep on going on forever in describing this little piece of Eden on the west coast of Sardinia. Now it has become one of the most desired places among climbers all over the world. I am going to re-introduce the “Castello dell’Iride” (Castle of Iridis), the cliff symbol of Masua. It was the very first to be created, and it is still the most frequented routes. After many years spent in this heaven of Sardinian climbing, lots of overlapping memories come back to my mind. I have seen it coming to life and change, season after season, and now it is good to stop for a while, and see what has happened so far.
Although the Castle is a cliff with some difficulties, it is the realm of easy climbing, of innumerable routes of fifth and sixth grade, all of them kissed by amazingly sculptured rocks.
I have time to talk about these routes, you just have to look through these pages and go beyond these lines… But, please, let me have a little room to remember how important it is to enjoy and learn to climb on easy surfaces.. We are in a peculiar historical moment in which beginners learn on the resin of indoor gyms, and they are taught to think that climbing is the attainment of a series of more and more difficult results. There is nothing wrong with an agonistic conception of climbing, but, in a sense, it reduces and anesthetizes the senses, impoverishing the emotional side. It is important to climb rocks for rock’s sake: in an environment such as Masua, you learn to love it, to caress it, to feel the pleasure of one’s own body in harmony with Nature. Even for those who consider themselves among the best, and too good at climbing to go to Masua, it is important to come back and climb on these easy slabs. You can relax, feel the pleasure to move and to breathe the breeze of the sea. Climbing cannot be just pain, but rather the joy of the senses and we, who still firmly believe in this, entrust Masua’s routes with the task of handing down this important heredity to climbers of the future. (M.O.)

Maurizio Oviglia su "Tramonto rosso" (8a), David
Kaszlikowski photo /StudioWspin.com.pl