Eline Le Menestrel: the French climbing sensation never short of a boulder to beat

WE TALK to Eline Le Menestrel about growing up as a climber and the sporting path its led her on around the world.

Eline Le Menestrel

Eline Le Menestrel was introduced to climbing by her family when she was a child.

FRENCH-born Eline Le Menestrel was introduced to climbing at an age when most are only just mastering the act of walking! Her parents could see her natural talent for the sport and were certain it would teach her lessons and skills that would remain with her for life.


Here Eline talks to us about how her passion for climbing has only continued to flourish and how her love of travel has meant she will never be short of her next climbing challenge. Read on to find out about the countries the sport’s taken her to so far on her climbing journey and her ambitions and goals for the months and years ahead.


Where did you grow up and when were you introduced to climbing?


I was born in Fontainebleau and now I live in Barcelona, since my parents decided to move here when I was two years old.

I started climbing with my family when I was a kid.


Eline Le Menestrel

As Eline grew older she became more and more enthusiastic about the sport of climbing.

How much opportunity did you have to climb at the beginning and how long was it until you realised you had a real talent for the sport?


We used to go to the cliffs most weekends and travel around the world during the holidays.
As I was growing up I came to like climbing more and more and it has become a passion for me.


Who were your biggest climbing inspirations at that time and who were your closest mentors?


I’ve always been inspired by Chris Sharma and his limitless motivation. When I was a kid and I was angry because I didn’t succeed, booth of my parents would tell me that Chris is happy when he falls: it is an opportunity to try again this beautiful route.


Eline Le Menestrel

Starting out early: Eline was thrust into the sport by parents who could see the positives climbing could have on her life.

Tell us about your climbing style?


Climbing outside is what I like the most: from bouldering to multi-pitch routes, everything is good for me. I climb a lot at the cliffs around Barcelona: Montserrat, Siurana, Montsant, Santa Linya… I feel so lucky to have this crazy amount of rock next to my home.

Maybe technical and crimpy climbs are easier for me (my style?) but I actually enjoy a lot the routes/boulder problems that are very steep or powerful. I see them as opportunities to push myself further.


Eline Le Menestrel

Eline has climbed around the world and this year took on a great climbing challenge in South Africa.

What have been your biggest climbing successes to date and where in the world has the sport taken you?


This summer I went to Rocklands (South Africa) for the third time and I was able to sent The Hatchling (my first 8a boulder). It was a moment out of time, one of those that fill your motivation bag for at least one year!


But the climb that took me the more time and dedication was definitely Estrogen. It is a very hard 8a+ next to my home. You have to hike 1 hour to get to the cliff and the conditions are good only once in a while.


I’ve climbed in Spain, France, Belgium, Switzerland, Germany, Austria, the US, Morocco, South Africa and Thailand.


Eline Le Menestrel

Eline’s love of travel means it’s always easy for her to find her next climbing challenge.

Tell us about how you combine your passion for climbing with your love of travel?


For me traveling is a way to open my mind and dream big. I get to know new people who see things from a completely different perspective and it helpes me to believe in my dreams.


When I travel, I discover new places, new people, new routes, new ways of climbing, new kinds of music but also new ways of living.


It is a way to share my passions and I enjoy giving energy to the people I meet.

What are your climbing goals for the months and years ahead?


There are many lines that motivate me around my home. I train with my coach Didier Mottart and the Rêvolution Climbing Team to get stronger in order to be able to climb more and more.

I also have some projects in the South of France: I’d like to try La rose et le vampire (Buoux) and Tenesse (Gorges du Tarn).


I am also very motivated to try multi-pitch routes, like in Montserrat, Gorges du Verdon or Ratikon.

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