17. März | 2015

Searching for a deep satisfaction

I feel like a real rockclimber right now. Since I quit my ordered and setteled life, a lot of things have changed. I was reflecting a lot about how I want to be a single person and what my daily life should look like. I became much smoother and nicer with myself and with other people since my brutal cut in life. I think it’s because I’m more sensible than before and my heart and mind is completly open. I can follow the movement of life and this feels like the right thing to me at this point of life.

This movement took me to Spain at the beginning of Feburary after some crazy experiences earlier this year in the middle east. I landed here because I felt in love with a route called « Reina Mora »  a year ago. I had only one wish in mind since, going back and climbing in it again.



It’s a good feeling to climb on a route we really love and also super interesting to see the lessons it teaches us.

I came to Spain because of some deep friendships I made last year and I missed my friends. Climbing has always had a big sense of sharing to me and I simply like to be surrounded by persons I feel connected to. For me, life makes only sense if I feel love and compassion. This makes me vibrate and feeling alive !




Last year I fell in love with the route and I tried it a lot. By the end of the season I felt frustrated because I failed. I hadn’t had the right attitude ; I was kind of naive because everything  was so new for me. I  was used to finishing routes really fast and then passing to something else. It was the first time I seriously attacked a route with such a big ample and with such a high difficulty.


This year life brought me back to her, naturally. I’m really enjoying the progression, but also the regression, the joy I feel while doing great links, the suffering when I’m  loosing a lot of skin on sharp holds and the bad night I’m spending somethimes because my muscles are burning so much. I love the physical and mental battles while I’m climbing (I’m having a hard time in the really beginning of the route in an awkward crack). I’m dealing with the little sacrifices I have to make to feel in shape and all the unexpected emotions which are coming up.


But one thing has always first rang to me : I feel in love and peace with the route. I choose this route because it feels like the right to me to climb and also I feel that I can fully express myself while trying.





Honestly, I have no idea where this story will takes me and how and when  it will end. I know that I’m giving my best and that I fully live this great experience. I feel unstressed and free and really don’t care about the moment when I will clip the chains. I know that it will be one of the greatest moments in my life and that I will feel something that I’ve been searching for. I’m convinced that the more time it takes, the more I will feel this deep satisfaction I’m looking for. It’s kind of a cool feeling to see things like that…. ;-)



Beside my experiences in route, life feels great here in Spain! I put up my basecamp in Barcelona at my best friends house where I feel such a warm welcome by his entire family. I have an advanced camp here in Cornudella the Montsant where I’m sharing a flat with my buddies Jonathan Siegrist and James Lucas. The town is full of nice people which mostly have a healthy and good spirit! I slowly start to understand some Spanish and Catalan and due to the big American influence here I’m improving my English a lot which is also a good thing. I feel lucky and privileged. Thank’s to all the people which making my life so unique and rich.

Paysage Montsant HD couleurs

Photo credit: Sam Challéat, Raph Fourau and Paolo Sartori

Voeux pour 2015

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“Je vous souhaite des rêves à n’en plus finir et l’envie furieuse d’en réaliser quelques uns. Je vous souhaite d’aimer ce qu’il faut aimer et d’oublier ce qu’il faut oublier. Je vous souhaite des passions, je vous souhaite des silences. Je vous souhaite des chants d’oiseaux au réveil et des rires d’enfants. Je vous souhaite de respecter les différences des autres, parce que le mérite et la valeur de chacun sont souvent à découvrir. Je vous souhaite de résister à l’enlisement, à l’indifférence et aux vertus négatives de notre époque. Je vous souhaite enfin de ne jamais renoncer à la recherche, à l’aventure, à la vie, à l’amour, car la vie est une magnifique aventure et nul de raisonnable ne doit y renoncer sans livrer une rude bataille. Je vous souhaite surtout d’être vous, fier de l’être et heureux, car le bonheur est notre destin véritable.”
Jacques Brel


Photo: Sam Challéat

The Folly

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Life, to me, is passionate with changes, colour and movement. When I can embrace and live with this flow, I feel alive, light and limitless.

Since the end of the summer, I was searching and asking myself why the adventurousness of life and excitement of climbing was lost. There seemed to be too much action with too little intent during a busy and hectic year, which followed with over exertion of energy on the route Orbayu. I was beginning to feel confused with movement and progress.

At the beginning of the long journey with the Petzl Roc Trip, I did not feel in my « shoes ». With time, as we moved south with the whole caravan, I started to feel my eyes brighten with the colours of life moving around me again. I felt comfortable with the new and different people we travelled with. I was able to share a lot of time with friends. And most of all, I really appreciated the « non-structured » life. Life was not chaotic at all, but to appreciate this kind of travel, it is good to be open for any situation, for every unanticipated challenge and to have an open heart to go out of my little « cocoon » and be involved with the life of the people that are around me.

After these two months, I realized that the « dream » life I had built during the last years was not right for me. The routine of daily life with a stable home and material goods was taking away my “joie de vivre”. I love the life that does not follow a structure and stays open to allow me to follow my feelings. This may seem chaotic to some. To me this feels completely free…..to be able to follow my heart.

The time has come to make a change, and radically I did. I left the security of my home I helped to build and a stable relationship.

This took a lot of my courage and once I made the move, my gut let me know that I made the right decision. I packed my few belongings into my little blue car and drove away. I knew that it would not be easy for some people and I tried to be respectful as possible, but in the end I did it for my own happiness.

At this moment now, I feel a deep happiness within myself, even when I pass moments alone. There is a deep freedom of ease inside of me.

My eyes can see colours so bright and my mind feels so open. I feel so much gratitude to be able to see the beauty in each moment and the beauty in all the people.

I’m sitting now on the train from Fontainbleau to Zürich where I had spent a week in the forest with some of my best friends. It was a magical time. With this new open mind, I was able to bring down some important barriers……no limits….

I permitted the « folly » to come back in my life so I can fully express myself. I feel Nina again.


Petzl Roc Trip, last Stop


Final stop – Turkey. This was the destination I was most psyched on. I was in Turkey last year for about three weeks for the Petzl Bolting trip and honestly, I love this country so much. The people there have a real respect to each other and it feels like they would do anything for you. The climate and the food are amazing and life is healthy, simple and ‘chill’. So far every thing is running smooth.

It seemed that it wasn’t the best time to visit Turkey. A lot of people are afraid of the delicate political situation there, but if feels like the media are just pushing too much. It’s crazy how much influence the media can have in our lives if we don’t stop to look around. I was confronted with this in the beginning of the summer with the Orbayu/Digulian history. The media loves drama.

We felt good in Turkey and there was not even a small sign of all the bullshit people in France have heard about this country.

Our first stop was a huge field of boulders, near Bodrum, Bafa Lake. So impressive. The only negative point was that we were quiet early in the season so the weather was extremely hot!

I felt a little weak after the holidays. And, after five weeks of travelling with the whole group I had my overdose of people…so Bafa wasn’t the most glorious destination for me, but those feelings are just normal when you’re travelling with a big group for such a long time. After a little ‘crisis’ things got back to normal and I felt comfortable again with the Roc Trip situation.

Next step was Antalya. I was so excited to go back to Citdibi, the new climbing cliff we bolted just last year. I was really happy to watch all the people appreciate the work we had done and seeing them climb the routes I bolted a year ago. My dear Citdici is one of the best high-level spots I’ve seen so far… A tufa basar in the middle of a Turkish paradise.

I feel in my element with this kind of climbing. I like to manage long routes, like the special effort of tufa climbing and I like to fully express myself.

On the first day I did the huge multipitch route of Daniel Dulac (8b+/8b/8b/7a/6c), together with Cedric and then I concentrated on the sport climbing routes.

There was so much to do! My best performances were an 8a+ onsight, an 8b flash, an 8b+ on second go and an 8b+/8c redpoint. It was the first time since Orbayu that I felt ready to push hard, I missed it so much…

Last and ultimate stop of the Petzl Roc trip was Olympus, the perfect place to celebrate the end of this great event. The principal discipline here was the deep water soloing. It was so much fun and the perfect discipline to do in this hot, humid weather.

The last evening party was soooo great! All the members of the team were wearing traditional Turkish clothes and we danced the whole night….

What a great event, what a great experience, what a great opportunity. I feel so lucky in my life and I’m so thankful for these rich moments I lived during this trip.

Thank you Petzl for making all of this possible!!!!