Monday 24 January 2011

The joys of new routing.

Tom and I had originally planned to get on something big on sunday but given that it was absolutely freezing and forcast to get colder, we went for the "it'll be there next year" option in order to save our fingers and toes.
Instead we decided to go and have a look at a new line I'd scoped when ski touring last winter. I was amazed no-one had spotted it, but a good look through the OHM and all the guidebooks I could find suggested that the line was untouched.
However, having toured up for a few hours with climbing packs we were disappointed to see that it was not quite formed. It was possibly climbable but would be desperate and given that standing still for 5 mintues gave us both numb feet, we didn't fancy the long belay duty that would have been necessary.
I obviously can't reveal the location of the line but all will soon revealed when we go back and do it!
Conditions in the Argentiere basin currently look amazing, with the north face of the Droites and the Lagarde looking perfect. The Swiss route on Les Courtes looks good up to half way but a bit thin after that - give it another month. If it just warms up a bit I'll get on something!

Inversion from the top of Grand Montets.
North East and north faces of Les Courtes

Les Droites

Lycra at minus 29!!!! I bet he didn't hang around long!