/ Schreckhorn North face routes

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Simon4 - on 20 Sep 2013
Trying to find out some information about these, so far googling brings no success, while Martin Moran book only covers the Andersongrat.

Anyone done them, or know where descriptions/grades etc can be found?

All information gratefully received, also best time of year for the S and the Lauteraarhorn if known.
BenTiffin - on 20 Sep 2013
In reply to Simon4: There are four routes including the Andersongrat described in the AC Bernese Oberland guide. My copy is the one with the Eiger on the front cover.

Ben
jon on 20 Sep 2013
In reply to Simon4:

Are you just trying to avoid the Schreckhornhütte ogre?
Simon4 - on 20 Sep 2013
In reply to jon: No, just trying to stop Wayne beating him to a pulp!

He can be a bit "forceful", can Wayne, when annoyed, as a French guide who was being an arse very nearly found out on the summit of Mont Maudit. But that is another story.

Those North face routes look intriguing, but I need to know more about them to see if they are realistic options. Nothing about them in CamptoCamp, or many other places, I found one cursory description that sounded quite serious.

So just a thought at the moment.

Besides, if we DID do a North face route, would we not then have the delights of the Ogre when very tired after the descent?
jon on 20 Sep 2013
In reply to Simon4:

You could try asking for some info from the person who took this photo: http://www.ukclimbing.com/images/dbpage.html?id=143089

Make sure you book with the ogre or he'll tell you to sod off, tired or not!
chris bedford - on 20 Sep 2013
In reply to jon:
>
> Make sure you book with the ogre or he'll tell you to sod off, tired or not!

Too true, as this tale of woe from earlier in the summer (after a traverse from the Lauteraarhorn to the Schreckhorn) seems to suggest....

après >16 heures de traversée, à 19h45 nous avons appelé le gardien pour savoir s'il y avait encore 2 places pour dormir discrètement. Nous avions spéculé de pouvoir rentrer dans la journée, mais malheureusement nous avions sous-estimé la longueur de cette course. Le gardien a refusé catégoriquement de nous faire accéder au refuge malgré qu'il avait de la place (!). Même après l'avoir sensibilisé à la longueur de la traversée au manque de couverture du réseau et au fait qu'il fallait bivouaquer sans être équipés, sa seule réponse était que ces problèmes ne le concernaient pas. Je me pose la question si tel aurait été le cas en cas d'accident sur le chemin de retour... Bref. Je ne commenterai pas ultérieurement l'attitude du gardien, ni ce que je pense de lui, mais on a prévenu la section de Bâle sur ces faits.

Full report on camptocamp (27th July 2013)...
http://www.camptocamp.org/outings/450007/fr/schreckhorn-traversee-lauteraarhorn-schreckhorn
Simon4 - on 20 Sep 2013
In reply to BenTiffin: Couldn't beg a photocopy/pdf of the relevant pages could I?
Robert Durran - on 20 Sep 2013
In reply to jon:
> (In reply to Simon4)
>
> Are you just trying to avoid the Schreckhornhütte ogre?

So it's not just me then!
Three years ago, we bivied above the site of the old hut to get an early start, but it pissed down so we binned it and retreated to the hut, soaked to the skin, arriving at an "unorthodox" time. We did not get a warm reception....

jon on 20 Sep 2013
In reply to chris bedford:

Exactly, that was the incident to which I was referring! In the end they actually did report him to the Section. The gardien's reason/excuse was that the phone connection was very bad and that he had understood that they were phoning from the valley (and not somewhere on the Schreckhorn) and wanted to come up. In the absence of proof either way, you have to give him the benefit of the doubt - as do the two climbers involved, to their credit (see the commentaires). He is, however, a thoroughly unpleasant person.
David Rose - on 20 Sep 2013
In reply to Simon4: I don't know about the hut now, but I will never forget the very strange experience I had there some years ago after climbing the Schreckhorn S Pillar. After a long and exhilarating day I changed into shorts and T shirt and sat down for dinner. The main course was a giant bratwurst sausage with trimmings. I spiked it with my fork and it bounced off the plate straight onto my bare thighs. I managed to save it from dropping on to the floor, bit only at the cost of first degree burns - a strange red stripe across both legs.
Simon4 - on 20 Sep 2013
In reply to davidoldfart:
> I managed to save it from dropping on to the floor, bit only at the cost of first degree burns - a strange red stripe across both legs.

A wonderful story!

Your dedication to eating at the cost of life and limb is a lesson to us all! I still have rather curious brown lines due to the approach to the Forche bivouac hut on a hot afternoon, when I decided to strip to the skin (on top anyway) exposing some unfamiliar flesh to the sun, thus generating rucksack strap lines. More on the sunward side than the other.

I suppose they will fade at some time this Winter.
MikeLell - on 20 Sep 2013
In reply to Simon4: Uploading some more Schreckhorn photos taken from near Glecksteinhuette and while climbing the Wetterhorn. View of the face is from similar angle as on topo in the AC guidebook, resolution far superior though.
Simon4 - on 21 Sep 2013
In reply to MikeLell: Thanks Mike.

Did you see, or were you looking for the North face routes, so spot where they went? Or did you climb one of them for that matter?

P.S. I notice that you climbed the Welzenbach on Lyskamm - impressive situation on that route, isn't it?
MikeLell - on 21 Sep 2013
In reply to Simon4: Had a good look at it through camera zoom lens, as would like to get on there some day. Only bimbled up to the Lauteraarsattel following the 2009 photo. My AC guide says there's The N Face Direct (TD), N Face Classic (TD) and ENE Rib (D).

Yeh, did the Lyskamm Welzenbach route with a guy I met on here, finishing up through a rock band to the right to break up the monotony of it all. Very fun route. http://www.ukclimbing.com/images/dbpage.html?id=182111
Simon4 - on 21 Sep 2013
In reply to MikeLell:
> My AC guide says there's The N Face Direct (TD), N Face Classic (TD) and ENE Rib (D).

The ENE ridge is the Andersongrat I think.

I was wondering about the N face direct, also the N Face classic, very likely depend on the year and the state of the face and very much on the time of year that you tried it.


> ... finishing up through a rock band to the right to break up the monotony of it all.

Don't reveal these well kept secrets! I actually soloed it and was the only person on the face that day, the situation was awesome, the face immense and forbidding but if the truth be told, the climbing was actually a bit dull and certainly not that technical - just repetitive. In fact I found the descent of the voie normalle to be more interesting, and certainly more un-nerving.

But we brotherhood of "Welzenbachers" must at all costs hide these dark and arcane mysteries from mere mortals, and pretend that it was fantastically hard and we were continually thinking how to tackle the next section.



MikeLell - on 22 Sep 2013
In reply to Simon4: Latest 3 photos in my gallery show the face well. This was in mid July last year.

http://www.ukclimbing.com/photos/author.html?nstart=0&id=56453
Simon4 - on 23 Sep 2013
In reply to MikeLell: Thanks Mike, great shots, also very useful to know that they were taken in July.

The serac that is supposed to be on the direct route is not obvious at all on those pictures, was it visible to the naked eye? Looking at the guidebook pictures, I was wondering how one could get over it.
MikeLell - on 24 Sep 2013
In reply to Simon4: As far as I remember, serac is not as big as shown in the AC topo. Would personally prefer skirting around it to tackling it direct but it didnt look completely stupid. Will check my photos again to see what I can see.
Simon4 - on 24 Sep 2013
In reply to MikeLell: Cheers.

The curious thing is that the Alpine club guidebook description for the classic N face route gives it 600m at 50 degrees, but grades it at TD+. Now why, I ask, is a 600m 50 degree slope, roughly equivalent to say the NE face of Lyskamm or 2/3rds of the Coutourier Couloir, both roughly D+ given TD+? Especially as the Alpine Club old guide books are not normally known for over-grading routes, rather the reverse. Why also does it give a route time of 10-12 hours for roughly 1700 vertical m?

Methinks there is quite a lot that doesn't meet the eye here.
LakesWinter on 24 Sep 2013
In reply to Simon4: The top bit looks like it could be mixed or maybe icy mixed to me - maybe that section accounts for the grade? Especially if the rock turns out to be slabby and the gear sparse?
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LakesWinter on 24 Sep 2013
In reply to Simon4: Have you tried the camp to camp forums for further info? Sometimes you can get good and recent info from there
Simon4 - on 24 Sep 2013
In reply to LakesWinter: yes, I have - very little on the Schreckhorn, and nothing on the N Face. It may change by next year when any attempt could be done, but I doubt if it is often attempted at all.
LakesWinter on 24 Sep 2013
In reply to Simon4: I think that is true for many classic north faces in the Oberland from what I can gather - do let us know how you get on, even though I am trying to stop the dirty habit of Alpinism!
Simon4 - on 24 Sep 2013
In reply to LakesWinter:
> (In reply to Simon4) The top bit looks like it could be mixed or maybe icy mixed to me - maybe that section accounts for the grade? Especially if the rock turns out to be slabby and the gear sparse?

That is what worries me. There could well be some very tenuous ground there.

But in Mike's pictures taken in July, it looks quite well covered, as if you could just crampon up it. Of course I realise that this was a pretty snowy year.

LakesWinter on 24 Sep 2013
In reply to Simon4: Although if you're lucky at that height some of this year's snow may well have stuck and another snowy winter/spring on top of that might allow an ascent in decent neve conditions...
Cellinski - on 25 Sep 2013
In reply to Simon4:

Here's a good set of pictures from an ascent of Schreckhorn N face:

http://www.bigwall.altervista.org/Schreckhorn/
Simon4 - on 25 Sep 2013
In reply to Cellinski: Many thanks, nice pictures.

Do I take it from those pictures that you approached from the North via the Gleckstein hut, and then crossed (or bivied on) the Lauteraarsatel?

What was the route you did, and how was it? Also, can you please say what time of year it was?

It looks from your pictures as if snow lines go right up the North face to the summit ridge, with possibly some mixed stuff higher up, is this correct?
Cellinski - on 25 Sep 2013
In reply to Simon4:

Sorry, these are not my pictures. I had seen them a while ago, identified the face as an attractive route and now remembered. I can see that they were taken on 1st of August in 2009. I conjecture that they approached from Grimsel, on pictures 2 and 3 you can see the Finsteraarhorn E face and the Studerhorn N face. It seems to me that they went up Lauteraargletscher and bivied near the Lauteraarsattel. Next day, they did the face. It's not obvious from the pictures which line they did exactly, however there's a few prominent pictures of the face and one can identify several options. I would anyway not bother about 'established' routes, but just pick the line which looks the most attractive. It seems as if there are several snow/ice lines going up to the summit ridge. Might be that these guys went straight to the summit, hence there was a little bit of mixed at the top.
Simon4 - on 25 Sep 2013
In reply to Cellinski: Thanks for drawing my attention to them anyway.
bdgm on 25 Sep 2013
In reply to Simon4: In my old Alpine Club Guide Book (1979) its given as 550m, D+ with an average angle of 53 degrees which makes it sound similar to something like the Lenzspitze albeit a lot more remote. First British ascent R. Milward and S. Parr 1977.
jon on 25 Sep 2013
In reply to bdgm:
> First British ascent R. Milward and S. Parr 1977.

Also known as Christopher Robin. http://www.ukclimbing.com/images/dbpage.html?id=89272

Simon4 - on 26 Sep 2013
In reply to bdgm: Interesting how recent (comparatively), the first British ascent is (must be 2 years before the book was published). That is often a warning sign in itself.

That or having "fa V.J.E Ryan, F Lochmatter, J Lochmatter" by it.

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