Fontainebleau is so popular because it’s easy accessible and the soft sandy landing is a priority for climbers. There are no big upwards and the sectors are approachable by short and comfortable walking. The areas of are pretty spread out and the territory is huge so car renting could be useful.
The rock is high quality fine-grained sandstone, with its advantages and disadvantages. It sticks when it is cold but you can find very good boulders in summer and hot conditions and it is a typical family friendly sight. Rock is one of the best to climb on, because it is not too rough on the skin but offers perfect friction. It is hard to summarize the climbing-style, but if somebody was there before, must feel the style.
Best-known specific is a famous Font slopers but we have to mention arétes, the best mantles of the world, slabs, high balls, overhangs, roofs, cracks. On the typical local slabs 7c sport climbers can easily fail on a 5b boulder. Landing is almost good at everywhere, the ground is flat and sandy, you can climb with one pad. Because Fontainebleau is so popular, chalk can cause problems so use it sparingly and clean off the grips when you are finished (with a soft brush).
There are around 200 sectors in Fontainebleau. In the most popular and bigger sectors, there are more than 100 blocks with hundreds of routes. Big sectors there are as huge as whole climbing places elsewhere. Most of the famous sectors can be accessible easily, few minutes walking from the parking places. If this is your very first time at Fontainebleau, you should start at these sectors:
- Bas Cuvier
- Franchard Isatis
- Rocher aux Sabots
- or the beach-feeling Cul de Chien.
During the season (mostly spring and autumn) the biggest sectors can be crowded on holidays, so if you are on a longer trip, you should choose some smaller sectors on these days. Sometimes it is hard to getting through between sectors, TopoGuru’s GPS-database will help you getting there with the in-built compass tool.
Rest day / Food
French cuisine is well-known around the world, you should visit Fontainebleau and try some bakeries in the main street. Secret hint: at main square, opposite side of Carusell, you should try the raspberry-cake in a bakery at the corner. Helping the guests, you can order fresh and tasty bakeries and dairy products to most of the camps. Besides that, there are loads of stores and supermarkets inside and around the city. Biggest one is the Centre Commercial in Villiers where you can find a Dechatlon too.
We recommend you to visit the Castle and its park in your rest day. Muret-sur-Loing’s old town is also beautiful, do not miss to visit La Fromagarie (one corner from city gate), you can taste a perfect selection of traditional French cheese and wines there. If you fancy a day-long trip, you can travel to Paris within 50 minutes by car or train directly.
At Scape Shop in city center and Decathlon nearby, climbing accessories are accessible and easy to buy. Here you can also rent different types of crash pads for 8 EUR / day. Although Fontainebleau dries fast, you can keep in shape at Karma Climbing Gym, with services of indoor lead and boulder climbing.
Where to stay
You have a lot of accommodation opportunities in Fontainebleau. Searching and booking a house is so easy at Airbnb or Vrbo. There are a lot of camps: Le Courtilles du Lido, Camping Le Prés, La Belle Etoile, use your tent or reserve a mobile home, it is up to you! Mobile Homes are a good and thrifty options for smaller groups.