Capucino Grande

 

Capucino Grande, please…

When we woke up at three o’clock and look at the Bojan’s bed, it was empty. Where the f*** is that crazy guy. We were lucky when we saw him lying on the floor in front of our door. Yeah its true that our roommates were maybe two winter sleeping grizzlies, their inhuman snoring was crazy

Quick breakfast and let’s go. We still didn’t know if it will be possible to climb our goal – Grand Capucin. Because the wind and weather forecast wasn’t the best, we decided to change our plans a little bit and instead of the Bonatti’s route we decided for the shorter Swiss route (TD+, 6b A0, 300m).

Head lamps on and we started walking in freezing cold night, starry sky and kinda strong wind still. When we got closer the wall, wind wasn’t so breezy  anymore and we decided to go there and give a try.

In the wall the temperatures were low and we were waiting for the sun for a long time. Respect for guys (Asper, Bron, Grossi, Morel) which in 1956 went with courage for this wall. For sure they were inspired by Bonatti, which in 1951 found this perfect piece of granite interesting and made there the first beatiful and strenuous line.

Our ascent was much faster than firstascentist’s for sure, but with modern equipment it is not surprising at all. After few metres in crampons we left our ice stuff on the ledge and continued just in boots next two or three pitches, then we start climbing just in climbing shoes and after 4 hours we reached the summit of Grand Capucin.

We liked the most the third and seven pitch which are really nice thin cracks and it was a  pleasure to climb them.

So after we enjoyed the summit view and took some photos, we started the abseiling quickly because the wind was getting stronger.

It was perfect trip with perfect guys and our video shows you that I’m right 😉

Climbers: Luca Blanchet, Milos Kalab, Bojan Hribernik
Text: Milos Kalab
Video: Bojan Hribernik

Advertisements

Chamonix – back for more

One week in Cham per year is definitely not enough. Climbing potential of this place is so huge that you could probably spend your whole life there and you wouldn’t be able to climb all the routes. So when leaving the town in the beginning of July, after 4th stage of The Mountain Academy, I knew I would come back. I just needed to wait for the right moment 🙂 And the right moment came in August. Together with my friend Tomek we came for 10 days with our heads full of dreams and names of big routes. Although weather was marvellous in previous weeks it deteriorated soon after we arrived. We got drenched to the bone already on the approach to Envers des Aguilles. Another storm hit during our warm-up route on Tour Verte. Then there was another one accompanied by some minor showers… Luckily a weather window appeared exactly when needed so we could send our main goal for the week – Republique Bananiere on Aguille de la Republique. The route is magnificent and a real must – 700 metres of climbing (25 pitches) on perfect granite, taking mostly impressive corners, cracks and some technical slabs! Cold bivy on the rocky ledge, starry sky above our heads and amazing sunrise over the Drus and Aguille Verte also made it unforgettable experience…

Beautiful sunrise over Grandes Jorasses

Continue reading

Bonatti-Tabou on Chandelle du Tacul

After tasting the Chamonix-granit in our last week of the MAC, I wanted to get more of if. As Sang and Seb enthused about the Bonatti-Tabou rout on Chandelle du Tacul we went for it! And they were so right!!! 🙂

the amazing 6b+-pitch

Luca in Bonatti-Tabou

Luca on the traverse

direction to Mt.Blanc

on the top with the Grand Capucin in the background

chamonix in b&w

‘A picture is worth a thousand words’ they say. Well, here’s a small sample of my favourite black and white photos from last stage of Mountain Academy. Enjoy!

Approaching Petit Charmoz. Surrounded by mysterious and scary peaks

Continue reading

little yosemite in cham

For the last two days of climbing in Cham I teamed up with our newbie Charlie 🙂 Initially we wanted to do a route on Dent du Geant  and then famous Rochefort ridge on the next day. Unfortunately weather forecast wasn’t good – a very strong wind basically made any high altitude activity impossible. Climbing a needle as tall as Dent du Geant would be a bit of Patagonia experience. Feeling not so ready for this we decided to change our decision and we chose an area called Envers des Aiguilles. In French it means ‘the other side of the needles’ which is quite funny cause I always thought that Courmayeur was on the other side of Cham… 😉

no need to rope up on this flat and not-so-cracky part of mer de glace

Continue reading

brévent – c’est magnifique

after three days in a row of climbing we felt it was a good idea to pick some shorter and less demanding goals for day four. some journalists joined us and we wanted to show them how life and tmac is, so we chose the brevent area with some quality sport and trad lines. dave – chief editor of climber magazine – climbed with us and we had a chat about what we do at tmac while dave was taking a lot of action pictures.

Three, two, one, BASE! A jumper dives, shouts and flies his wingsuit all the way down to the valley. His buddy follows closely. Their diving board is situated on the very top of the Brévent in the Aiguilles Rouges. Our route called Ex Libris happened to be ending just underneath this diving board. It was pretty surprising and even a bit scary to suddenly hear and then see two men flying by, while negotiating the final pitches of medium quality rock. The first three pitches of the 150 m line were superb though: a beautiful corner crack – no bolts, no pegs (only bolted belay stations.) Manu was continuously teasing our man from Argentina; Milos and Isabel clearly enjoyed this trad style of rock climbing too.

coming down after a full day in the sun, the heat in the valley was immense! later in the afternoon some went for refreshing ice cream and then on to ohm – the mountain guide office – in the centre of chamonix where we were used all the available resources as guidebooks, maps, weather forecast etc. to make a plan for the next day (and maybe even overnight locations). stay tuned to see if our plans worked out.