Monday, 1 August 2011

Frontier Ridge (aka Kuffner Ridge)

Our hiding place just after dodging the rock fall

Today felt like a hard day! We summited Mont Maudit at the top of the Frontier Ridge at 10am after setting off at 5am in the morning. I know the problem was that we weren't acclimatised at all, and we had climbed up to 4465m, and only arrived in Chamonix the day before yesterday. Anyway the route was fantastic! The climbing was very exposed but never too difficult. The were quite a few snowy ridges which felt a little spooky but generally fun to climb over. The rock was generally pretty sound, plenty of loose stuff so we had to tred carefully. Unfortunately a team up ahead didn't tred carefully and one climber took a fall bringing off alot of rock with him. At this point Kenny and I were moving together up a steep snow slope with no protection but fortunately we had space to move to the right as fast as we possible could to just miss all the falling rock. If we were 20 seconds slower there would have been no avoiding it! We checked the climber was OK the scooted past them so we were above everyone else. The hardest part of the route for me was the last 100m height gain along the snow slopes, I could hardly walk! Note to self acclimatise before climbing to 4465m.

From the top we walked down to Col du Maudit and Col du Midi, picked up out gear stash and walked up the the Midi Ridge. At the lift I put my ice axe down for 5 minutes while I nipped to the loo in the station and somebody nicked it so I am now down a Petzl Quark Adze. If you have one for sale, let me know!

No comments: