I was pretty pleased with my activity in the mountains in 2015 having done trips from the Alps to Alaska, to Northern Africa in Morocco, and of course, climbing a lot at home in the Carpathians. Although I felt in my best shape after all those climbing days, the end of the year arrived with a few unfulfilled plans and less motivation to push things as hard as before. Changing from “summer mode” to “winter mode” when the actual winter conditions were failing to show up was even more frustrating especially during the holidays when feasting on the Christmas meals was the main “entertainment”. Now looking back I’m tempted to say: “well, we all have our ups and downs! 🙂 .

2016 settled in and I was now hopefully looking for the “ups” and the motivation I thought I’d lost.

A first winter weekend spent at Bâlea, in the Fagaras Mountains, along with Alex and Ioana, on a great weather and good climbing conditions attracted us to climb a probably new line on the West face of Vânătoarea lui Buteanu. Once we found ourselves on the face we easily lost our planned route among the small rocky spires and narrow couloirs, but kept climbing to the top and joined the last part of Adi Valean’s route.

 © Ioana Acsinia

Green: Adi Vălean Red: Mihnea and Alex

 © Ioana Acsinia

© Ioana Acsinia

Later, in Bucegi Mountains, I teamed up with Vasile Dumitrica and tried (again) to climb Furcile route, on a really cold day. Freezing while belaying Vasile who was more a routefinder than a climber on the long traverse in the lower part of the Galbinele Wall was a great way to catch a cold. We ended up the day bailing from the route and fronzen solid.

Then the conditions deteriorated in the mountains bringing mild temperatures and rain over snow. Therefore, spending the first weekend of the year at home felt annoying. I knew I had to keep my head busy with positive stuff but time flies and I wanted a real restart, I wanted to get back to building up new plans and dream about new climbing expeditions, to train and climb.

This last weekend I attended the 2015 trail running “Carpathian Circuit” closing event in Brasov and since big amounts of snow were announced to drop over the region I brought along my skis and also my climbing gear. And yes, the happy moments arrived, skiing in powder snow, ski touring up the slopes in Postavaru, breathing hard, getting my feet exhausted, enjoying some cool drytooling routes in Râșnoave Gorges with a joyfull group of friends. It was an intense weekend that I enjoyed a lot.

Now, at home, I’m looking at the pull up bar and I’m anxious to use it again after 2 months of ignoring it. This was the restart, the small switch that I had to turn to power up the engine.