La Berarde

Greg and i have travelled down to the Ecrins Massif to meet some friends and do some climbing.  On sunday we climbed a twelve pitch route on Tete Le Maye above La Berarde called Le Maye Dulfer (TD 6B+).   The rock was excellent.

On monday 29th we had a very early start and headed up to the Aiguille Dibona where we climbed the Voie Madier on the South Face (TD) and descnded the Voie Normale (PD).  This gave an excellent climb on perfect granite leading the climber to the summit of one of the most beautiful mountains in the massif.  The Voie Normale still has a lot of neve on it and therfore mountain boots would be useful for the descent.

Today ( tuesday 30th) i am in the Ailefroide area visiting Rosie and some friends.  We have just completed 2 Via Ferratas.  These are great for a rest day, a bad weather option or as a day out in their own right.  The local tourist information office has plenty of information on possible sites.

The Albert Premier Hut

Greg and i headed into the Albert Premier Hut on thursday 25th June with the intention of climbing the Forbes Arete which has been seeing a few ascents. Unfortunately, when we got up on friday morning lightning storms surrounded the Mont Blanc Massif. We still managed to climb a smaller summit (Petitie Fourche, 3520m, Facile) during a clearing in the weather. This little peak saved a day. Photos on Greg Boswells site.

We may now head to Les Ecrins to do some top class alpine rock on peaks such as Aiguille Dibona.

Aiguille du Tour

Paul has been out with clients on the Aiguille du Tour and reports excellent conditions. Lots of teams have also been on the Chardonnay.

The North Face of the Midi

With a very low freezing level forecast (2400m) for the 22nd June Greg and i headed to the North Face of the Midi. We left the Plan de L’Aiguille at midday and started climbing on the Third spur of the Midi at 1pm. The route contained a lot of mixed ground, and some aid climbing. The route was very well frozen.

Greg and i chose a line on the upper part of the route which meant that we were only exposed to serac fall for a short period of time. Photos can be seen on Greg Boswells blog.

20th June

The weather has been very wet in the mountains over the last couple of days and therefore Greg and i opted for some sports climbing. We headed to Neuhaus crag near Interlaken. This crag can be found in the Schweiz Plaisir guidebook. This is one of a series of guidebooks which is well worth having for when the big hills are out of condition. The guidebooks contain rock routes in France and Switzerland.

Out in the Oberland

Greg and i are currently out in the Oberland. On the 16th June we walked into the Rottal Hutte. On the 17th we made a very early start and climbed the Roti Flue on the North Face of the Abeniflue (TD). We had to make a detour downwards to approach the route as a large serac now threatens the normal approach (and collapsed during the night). This serac has appeared since the last guidebook was published and therefore not mentioned.

We stayed overnight at the Hollandia Hutte and then returned to the valley the next day. Photos can be seen on Greg Boswells blog. Currently it is raining and we are recovering in the valley.