/ Long Alpine Rock route.

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Chay - on 05 Apr 2013
Hi All,

Looking for a Long Alpine Rock route; sort of like an easier Gervasutti Pillar that roughly equates to UK S/HS up a peak or a big wall. Not too fussed on which area.

Never done any rock routes in the alps; always done mountaineering routes either snow/mixed; looking for something different.

I know I'm not being very specific.
C
AlanLittle - on 05 Apr 2013
In reply to Chay:

Some Dolomites suggestions, all around the 800 metres / grade IV range:

S Face Tofana Dimai
Pordoi Fedele/Dibona
Pala di San Martino Gran Pilastro
ripper - on 05 Apr 2013
In reply to Chay: yep the Dolomites is your playground
Chay - on 05 Apr 2013
In reply to AlanLittle: S Face of Tofana Dimai does look excellent; however, everything written on UKC suggests it's quite serious with 4c/5a climbing so I'd be keen on something a little less difficult.

I forgot to mention; something with relatively straight forward route finding would be good- I know it's always difficult on a big wall but the easier the better!

C
Murko Fuzz - on 05 Apr 2013
In reply to Chay:

Voie Madier, Aiguille Dibona, Ecrins.
Tim Chappell - on 05 Apr 2013
In reply to Chay:


Go and play in the Bregaglia. The Nordkante of the Piz Badile has been a dream of mine for several years now. And there's plenty else to go at that is spectacular, not very hard, and unbelievably long.

Watch out for granite bombs, though.
Chay - on 05 Apr 2013
In reply to Murko Fuzz: Think that's a little harder than HS! One of the photos of the route suggests a sustained HVS groove...
Chay - on 05 Apr 2013
In reply to Tim Chappell: North Ride of Piz Badile looks incredible!
Tim Chappell - on 05 Apr 2013
In reply to Chay:

Doesn't it just? Aaargh. Let me at it.
Christian Beck - on 05 Apr 2013
In reply to Chay: A Tatras classic...A route on Kezmarsky South face , to a possible ridge traverse to Lomnica summit if you want something a bit harder.

http://www.tatry.nfo.sk/f.php?f=stity//0294//029407.jpg

http://www.tatry.nfo.sk/f.php?f=stity//0978//F09781101.jpg
Mark / Alps - on 05 Apr 2013
In reply to Chay:

Chamonix area has a variety but most are a little / or a lot harder. The Aiguilles Rouges side is a good place to warm up with 5 to 16 pitch routes, many to peaks. Lots are bolted so route finding is easy. Voie Ravanel is a nice 16 pitch bolted (so no route finding probelems )route to a lovely peak. A couple of French 5c moves but always with bolts by your eyes! South Arete on Perseverance, nice 8 pitches. Gliere South Ridge, last two harder pitches can be missed out if you wish.
Big and more complex routes around the Envers hut. Aiguille Republique is an airy summit - 600 metres. Grepon route - 850 metres.
Charmox / Grepon Traverse.
Miroir D'Argentine is a nice big slab - Direct is a lovely 14 pitch. French 5a. The Plaisir series of guide books have lots of options.
Beg / borrow some guidebooks and dream...
Chay - on 05 Apr 2013
In reply to Christian Beck: Looks a great place; is it on UKC- I can't seem to find the wall?
Christian Beck - on 05 Apr 2013
In reply to Chay: http://www.tatry.nfo.sk/

All info is on this site...lots of really good long moderate climbs on this wall..Kezmarsky Stit
Will need a bivi unless your going fast ,ridge is hs/vs depending on line you take.
Bivi in the ski lodge for free before route.
Chay - on 05 Apr 2013
In reply to Chay: Anyone do any of the routes here:

http://www.ukclimbing.com/logbook/crag.php?id=9091
Richc on 05 Apr 2013
In reply to Chay: north ridge piz badile, fantastic route, combined with a great treck back over two passes into switzerland, lots of other stuff in the area
Chay - on 05 Apr 2013
In reply to Richc: That's definitely an option; a friend of mine suggested http://www.ukclimbing.com/logbook/c.php?i=102651

any thoughts?

C
BALD EAGLE - on 05 Apr 2013
In reply to Chay:
> (In reply to Tim Chappell) North Ride of Piz Badile looks incredible!

Hey Chay (and Tim!)
Yep the Val Bregaglia area is one of the truly great places to visit in the Alps. The Nordkante on the Badile is a must do with about 25 pitches of relatively easy climbing, but there are lots of other top routes as well such as the Bugeleisen or Flat Iron close by. For inspiration if interested the following is a short video of my trip their last year showing my partner and I on our succesful outings up the Nordkante and Bugeleisen! :-)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=25P5WJVV-MU
Cheers Dave

Tim Chappell - on 05 Apr 2013
In reply to BALD EAGLE:


Good man (or bird, or whatever species/ genus you are). To be checked out over lunch...
Chay - on 05 Apr 2013
In reply to Tim Chappell: I may as well stop looking, I can now only think about climbing the NR Piz badile. It just looks too good.
Chay - on 05 Apr 2013
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Chay - on 05 Apr 2013
In reply to BALD EAGLE: Thanks, Dave!

What sort of UK trad grades would you give the routes you did out of interest?

C
The Ex-Engineer - on 05 Apr 2013
In reply to Murko Fuzz:
> Voie Madier, Aiguille Dibona, Ecrins.

That's solid HVS!

However, the Voie Normal is a good route at around HS and would suit the OP perfectly as a straightforward introduction to Alpine rock.
BALD EAGLE - on 05 Apr 2013
In reply to Chay:
> (In reply to BALD EAGLE) Thanks, Dave!
>
> What sort of UK trad grades would you give the routes you did out of interest?
>
> C

The Bugeleisen is 13 pitchs/300M but strangely (I think) is given the alpine grade TD- but it is quite well bolted and has fixed belays so you can ab down from the top of the route to the bottom and the crux pitch is no harder than French 5b according to the topo. It felt like a long sports route in the mountains with beautiful climbing!
The superclassic Nordkante is about 25 pitchs/1000M and is graded AD/D- with the crux pitch being 5a (3 bolts if I remember correctly) but most of the rest ranges from 3a to 4b.
<shrugs> As to how all this translates to UK grades I'm not entirely sure! If you go for the Nordkante on the Badile descend into Italy and stay overnight in the excellent Gianetti Hut, rather than ab back down the ridge. I've heard a lot of horror stories from folks who have attempted the ab... :-)
Hope this helps and bon chance! Cheers Dave

Tim Chappell - on 05 Apr 2013
In reply to BALD EAGLE:


The really important number about the Nordkante is its length.
Chay - on 05 Apr 2013
In reply to BALD EAGLE: Sounds fantastic- I think we've found a winner!

Nordkante just looks absolutely stunning; how come you've not got it done yet Tim? Time/money restraints presumably?

C
Skyfall - on 05 Apr 2013
In reply to Chay:

I'd also recommend one of the easy routes on Le Mirroir d'Argentine.

http://www.andypmountainguide.com/index.php/eng/Photos/Rock-Climbing-Images/Miroir-d-Argentine

You could also take a look at the Gross Furkahorn for a long ridge route (ESE?) with a 'summit' in alpine surroundings.

Both have routes sub VS.
BALD EAGLE - on 05 Apr 2013
In reply to Tim Chappell:
> (In reply to BALD EAGLE)
>
>
> The really important number about the Nordkante is its length.

Yup we stayed in the superb Sasc Fura hut and were walking at 4.30am and got to the start of the route at 6.30am. Being a glorious warm, sunny day there were quite a lot of folks on the route and I think we summitted around 4pm so I guess that made us quite slow but hey ho it is good to savour these things. Anyway we finally got to the Gianetti Hut for about 8pm and being totally mashed, 1 bevoir and a good meal was all it took to collapse in my bunk with a such a big smile it looked like I had a coathanger in my gob... :-)
BALD EAGLE - on 05 Apr 2013
In reply to Chay and Tim:
> (In reply to BALD EAGLE) Sounds fantastic- I think we've found a winner!

PM me as I have something you both may find useful!
Tim Chappell - on 05 Apr 2013
In reply to Chay:
> (In reply to BALD EAGLE) Sounds fantastic- I think we've found a winner!
>
> Nordkante just looks absolutely stunning; how come you've not got it done yet Tim? Time/money restraints presumably?
>
> C


In 2009 Adam Henly and I went to Sasc Fura, prospected the route in the evening, got up to do it the next day--and it was covered in snow :-(

We spent two days waiting for the snow to melt. It didn't. So we buggered off to Pontresina and did the Biancograt instead :-) :-) :-)

And that's the only time I've been to Graubunden/ Bregaglia.
Solaris - on 05 Apr 2013
In reply to BALD EAGLE:
> (In reply to Chay)

Agreed, lots of excellent stuff to go at in the Bregaglia.

Bugeleisen felt to us to be about British 4c/5a in places, but that may have been because its gneiss. It's a wonderful piece of fairly sustained slab climbing in a great situation. Friends who completed the route to the summit (ie after the equipped bit) didn't think the loose rock and choss was worth the extra time and effort.

To the OP: had you thought of the SW Ridge of the Schreckhorn? Really good climbing up the ridge in a superb situation, and there's lots of good, long granite and limestone routes in the vicinity.
Tim Chappell - on 05 Apr 2013
In reply to Solaris:

Hey Mr Sun King, have *you* done the Nordkante? Would you like to? I would, and with you would be great :-)
adnix - on 05 Apr 2013
In reply to Tim Chappell:

Salbit south ridge would be just about this grade, too.
http://www.alpine-guides.com/mountaineering/alpine/alpineinfo/salbitschen-south-ridge.htm
BALD EAGLE - on 05 Apr 2013
In reply to adnix:
> (In reply to Tim Chappell)
>
> Salbit south ridge would be just about this grade, too.

<rubs hands> Yup the Salbit South Ridge is on my hit list (amongst other gems) for my summer Alps trip this year! It looks absolute angel delight... :-)
Solaris - on 05 Apr 2013
In reply to Tim Chappell:
> (In reply to Solaris)
>
> Hey Mr Sun King...
I don't thinks that's quite what Tarkovsky or Lem had in mind, but thanks all the same!

> have *you* done the Nordkante?
No - snowed off, like you.

> Would you like to? I would, and with you would be great :-)
YHPM

Solaris - on 05 Apr 2013
In reply to adnix:
Excellent route and I'd have suggested it to were it not a couple of grades harder than the OP is asking for - ie British VS-HVS.
Tim Chappell - on 05 Apr 2013
In reply to Solaris:

You can keep your Tarkovsky and your Lem; I was referencing Abbey Road :-0
Murko Fuzz - on 05 Apr 2013
In reply to Chay:

You might be right, it was a while ago. My recollection was of it mostly feeling around HS. Easier than Gervasutti Pillar for sure.
Murko Fuzz - on 05 Apr 2013
In reply to The Ex-Engineer:

Oops. Terrible memory for these things. Having said that we didn't do the top bit. We encountered a bottle neck so did some trickier weirdess off to the right. Lovely mountain!
Tim Chappell - on 05 Apr 2013
In reply to adnix:
> (In reply to Tim Chappell)
>
> Salbit south ridge would be just about this grade, too.
> http://www.alpine-guides.com/mountaineering/alpine/alpineinfo/salbitschen-south-ridge.htm


That looks amazing. Pity about the bolts!
Al Evans on 06 Apr 2013
In reply to Tim Chappell: I haven't done it but isn't the Aiguille Noir de Peurerey ridge supposed to be a long easy rock route?
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OwenM - on 06 Apr 2013
In reply to Chay: The Portjengrat ridge on Pizzo d'Andilla just above Saas Fee it's a fun route never harder than mild severe. The rock is good surprisingly for Valais, and it puts you in some airy positions.
LukeO - on 06 Apr 2013
In reply to Chay:

Badile N ridge is indeed very nice. If you chose the Bergell, you could work up to it with the following routes in the Albigna valley, none of them particularly technically hard.

1. Piz dal Päl, nice warm up route to do on the day you arrive at the Albigna hut
2. Piz Balzet S ridge
3. Via Meuli on Punta d'Albigna
Still feeling good? Check out the Biopfeiler Classic route up to F5c but, the odd bolt and OK to protect. Or the Schildkröte on the other side of the valley, or the Fiamma. Feeling REALLY good? Get on the Via Felici, it's F6a but awesome. Hokuspokus is pretty safe but also has a slabby bolt protected 6a move - easy to retreat from this section.
4. Then over to Sciora... Flatiron/Bügeleisen is harder than Badile but half the length. Took us longer to rap than climb, stuck ropes galore. Nice though - it also reminds you why the Cengalo is scary:- loudly shedding tonnes of rock all day.
If you've done some or all of them, you will have a good indicator of how much fun you will have on the Badile.

I strongly support the night in the Gianetti, although the walk to Sasc Füra is loooong.

Hope this helps.

L
adnix - on 07 Apr 2013
In reply to LukeO:

There are plenty of good ideas on the Cosley & Houston page:
http://www.cosleyhouston.com/alps.htm
Chay - on 07 Apr 2013
In reply to adnix: Thanks, I'll give it a wee look!

C
Solaris - on 07 Apr 2013
In reply to Tim Chappell:

> That looks amazing. Pity about the bolts!
It is amazaing! It's not excessively bolted: there are only bolts for belays and where you really need them, so it needs a confident approach because you'd be facing a long fall in quite a few places. It certainly hasn't been reduced to a "mere" clip up.
OwenM - on 07 Apr 2013
In reply to Chay: This is the one http://www.cosleyhouston.com/portjengrat.htm

Really worth doing.
adnix - on 07 Apr 2013
In reply to Al Evans:

The Noire is beyond long easy climb in my book. I've read the east ridge is loose and mostly used as a descent route.
tistimetogo on 07 Apr 2013
In reply to Murko Fuzz:

Way to sandbag. You'd be hard put to find anything on that side of Dibona that's easier than HVS.
LukeO - on 08 Apr 2013
In reply to tistimetogo:

To be fair I did the Classic route on the same side as the Madier which is a medley of three other routes (http://www.camptocamp.org/routes/54995/fr/aiguille-dibona-voie-berthet-boell-stofer) and I don't recall any of it being harder than HS/VS sort of standard. The crux F5b pitch was well bolted, IIRC.

L
jon on 08 Apr 2013
In reply to LukeO:

I remember the Madier being a fabulous route. It was a long time ago but I keep a diary:

1 August 83, Madier, Dibona - fantastic - best VS in the world.

I'm not usually given to undergrading - in fact usually the opposite as I seem to find things harder than everyone else, so while the Madier is just a bit too hard for the HS that the OP is looking for, it's maybe not the solid HVS that the Engineer remembers?
adnix - on 09 Apr 2013
In reply to jon:

What about one of the routes on Mont Aiguille? The regular route is easy enough but there may be other routes, too
jon on 09 Apr 2013
In reply to adnix:

The one I did, SE Diedre, wasn't very good. I'm sure there are some good ones though.
adnix - on 10 Apr 2013
In reply to jon:

This one looks very nice. The other routes are few grades harder and about TD.
http://europetra.blogspot.fi/2013/02/mt-aiguille-la-tour-des-gemeaux.html
jon on 10 Apr 2013
In reply to adnix:

Yes, I know Enty has done this route three times, so it must be OK!
jcw on 10 Apr 2013
In reply to Chay: In fact the Gervasutti is not a rock route but involves a lot of serious mountaineering. But if you are looking for some long pure rock routes here are some more suggestions. I have not got the guide books with me so can't give proper references.
In the Dolomites one of the most enjoyable routes of reasonable standard I have done is the Pala delle Masanada Colatora Nero ( in fact correctly Via Decima) you can find it in Wilson's translation of the German book of popular Dolomite climbs). Short approach and easy descent. Brilliant.
Another good place to go is on the Nuffenen Pass from where there are two sustained ten full pitch routes at French 5c which actually go to a peak: Picadilly di Bedretta and Tanti Auguri: bolted, ab back down. Very pleasant area see Schweiz Plaisir etc. Also not far away (turn left for the Grimsel rather than right for Nuffenen coming from the west and down the other side of the pass to the Mittagfluh where there are three reasonable 400m routes, that on the left being easiest. Also in the region lots of long reasonable routes on slabs. You can always carry on afterwards to the Salbtschyn.
tjekel - on 11 Apr 2013
In reply to Chay: for a long alpine classic limestone offering:

http://www.bergsteigen.at/de/touren.aspx?ID=394

UIAA 4+/5- 20 something pitches
AlanLittle - on 11 Apr 2013
In reply to jcw:
> In the Dolomites one of the most enjoyable routes of reasonable standard I have done is the Pala delle Masanada Colatora Nero ( in fact correctly Via Decima) you can find it in Wilson's translation of the German book of popular Dolomite climbs). Short approach and easy descent. Brilliant.

Nice route, did it last summer (although I'm not sure it really lived up to the hype apart from the bathtubs pitch) But not by any reasonable definition "long"
AlanLittle - on 11 Apr 2013
In reply to tjekel:
> (In reply to Chay) for a long alpine classic limestone offering:
>
> http://www.bergsteigen.at/de/touren.aspx?ID=394
>
> UIAA 4+/5- 20 something pitches

Good idea. Surprisingly amenable climbing up a very impressive looking bit of rock. Pub at the top and a lift down too.

Andy Can - on 04 May 2013
In reply to Chay: hi there, I'll be in Chamonix 20 Jul til 16 Aug with family, car and kit. I'm pretty experienced but not pushing hard grades. Happy to do a high walk, climb, ice routes, valley crags etc if you're free. No great plans so very flexible with time away from family as we're out there for a month. Andy
Al Evans on 04 May 2013
In reply to Chay: Now the 'West Face of the Petite Jorrasses has been bolted and abseil stations fixed it must be just a long rock route, but a bit isolated and one of the finest in the range. It was barely ED when we did it in '69 and you had to descend into Italy in those days, must be low TD now at most. But exemplary climbing in a fine position, all on rock.
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Al Evans on 04 May 2013
In reply to Al Evans: I think the original (and only route when we did it) is now called The Contamine.
David Rose - on 04 May 2013
In reply to Chay: The S Ridge of the Aig Noire is not a good idea at all for someone inexperienced in Alpine rock. It has pitches of up to V+ (though most are much easier), is very long indeed, and has an unbelievably serious descent down the E Ridge, which is basically very steep dust above a 1,000 metre drop, at least in its upper section.

There is a lot to do in the Ecrins. The Aig Sialouze traverse is very pleasant, as is the traverse of the Petit Pelvoux by the S Ridge. The Boell on the Dibona has already been mentioned; the Madier is mild VS at most except for the last pitch, which can be aided. The normal route on the Meije would fit the bill.

There is stuff in Switzerland too: the Obergabelhorn or Zinal Rothorn, for example; or in the Oberland, some of the climbs around the Oberaletsch and Baltschiederklause huts. Or for something completley differnet - and no glaciers - try the Picos de Europa, where there are routes of 800m plus.
Luca Signorelli - on 05 May 2013
In reply to Chay:

Another vote NOT for the S Ridge of the Noire - awesome route, but it's a mountaineering route, not pure rock climbing.

Why don't you try the Orco Valley, actually the Piantonetto basin? Great long "granite" (it's actually gneiss indistinguishable from granite) routes, excellent mix of traditional and bolted routes, one of the best mountain hut of all the Alps (the mythical Pontese hut), access is actually straighforward and easy... grades are relatively hard but not impossible and there are some interesting intermediate routes

Link to the Pontese

http://web.tiscali.it/rifugio.pontese/
David Rose - on 05 May 2013
In reply to Chay: Another vote for the Pontese and the Orco valley. It's fantastic.

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