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Lipton - WI7 for Cecilia Buil

Back in February Spanish climber Cecilia Buil made an ascent of Lipton, the classic grade 7 icefall at the popular ice climbing destination of Rjukan, Norway.

Cecilia Buil on Lipton (WI7) Rjukan, Norway
© Cecilia Buil Collection

Lipton  © Tim Bateman
© Tim Bateman, Feb 2010
The route, a four pitch steep ice climb, has been on Cecilia's ticklist for the last few years, and it was this season that she finally got a chance to climb it.

Cecilia, travelling to Norway to make a television program (Al filo de lo Imposible), initially led the top two pitches after seconding her climbing partner Josito Romay on the first two whilst they fixed ropes and assisted their TV film crew. As Cecilia wanted to lead the entire route, they waited a few days for dangerously warm temperatures to pass before she got back on the route again.

Cecilia described her ascent to UKClimbing:

"Before starting climbing I was really nervous. A few days earlier I had fallen seconding the first pitch on a thin column of ice when a cauliflower broke on me, something that hasn't happened to me for quite a few years.

When I arrived at the crux I desperately placed a screw in the ice-roof, my arms swollen with the pump. The heat of the past few days had weakened the ice and the poor screws I had placed didn't offer much encouragement. I convinced myself they would hold a small fall and I kicked my right foot out to the hanging icicles coming down from the roof.

After two attempts my foot stuck - just - tiptoeing on the thin ice. Jamming my axe between the rock wall and the ice, I shifted my weight. Shit! Feet pop and are swinging in midair. I scrabble, body hugging the icicle, feet dangling useless below. Shit! I'm going to fall!

Suddenly a crampon sticks on the pencil thin end of the icicle. I hit the accelerator and squirm upwards. My arms explode. The bulging rock wall juts behind me, blunting the swing of my tool, making every swing short and weak, every placement marginal. I'm scared. This is mentally, technically and physically harder than anything I have done before."

Cecilia Buil breaking right out on to the ice on the very steep Lipton (WI7) Rjukan, Norway  © Cecilia Buil Collection
Cecilia Buil breaking right out on to the ice on the very steep Lipton (WI7) Rjukan, Norway
© Cecilia Buil Collection

Cecilia is sponsored by several companies including C.A.M.P, Trangoworld and La Sportiva and has a website at: Cecilia Buil Website

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21 Mar, 2012
By the sounds of her description, the crux would be a bit hard for me.....
21 Mar, 2012
Amazing effort!
21 Mar, 2012
I'm normally not one to do the whole "is this news!?!?" thing, and understand that 'news' doesn't only equal 'hardest', but I was under the impression that Lipton gets quite a few ascents. Can anyone comment on whether this is or is not the case? I know it's not the first female ascent as I keep seeing an ad in Rock and Ice featuring an female American guide doing it. Anyway well done to Buil for doing it and getting some good pics. Does anyone know if the Spanish TV piece is available online?
21 Mar, 2012
Id' have thought the same, someone I know has done it and didn't really say much.
21 Mar, 2012
your mate gets a WI7 tick and doesnt say much?! whats his name Will Gadd?
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