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Alpine Climbing & Skiing: Frost Guiding Blog

Rock Climbing

~ Monday 27th October 2008

3 days of sunny rock climbing, 3 crags, 28 pitches. Toes just recovered from the Matterhorn are now thoroughly battered!

First  "Follomi" at Sanetsch, 8 pitches up to 6b+ on perfect limestone.

Then "l'Ecureil" at Evolene - the first 3 pitches have recently been rebolted, but the superb finish is still strangely on old bolts. Quality climbing on great rock, 30 seconds from the car.

The excellent top pitch, 6b ish

                              

We drove over to Grimsel in the evening and slept in a lay by. The next morning we found the Grimsel car park full of mattresses - the Hospice is closed for refurbishmnent and the beds are stored in the car park! The autumn is the ideal time to climb at El Dorado - in the sun the temperature is perfect. We did Metal Hurlant, 15 pitches and 15 holds! Sustained slab and corner climbing.

Perfect granite corners

Finishing the 6b corner

In a sea of granite, pitch 10

Matterhorn North Face

~ Monday 20th October 2008

After a report of good conditions on the Schmidt route I headed over to Zermatt with Stu McAleese and Rich Cross. Time was a bit tight - Stu and Rich had flights to catch...The next morning with perfect weather and good nevé we made fast progress to the end of the ramp - then found several pitches of delicate mixed climbing which slowed things down a bit...this section can bank out, but in dry conditions there are several pitches of bold Scottish VI on typical Matterhorn rock.The chimney leading to the ramp

                         

Above this the climbing is easier but there is still a lot of it. We reached summit in time for a spectacular sunset, but hopes of catching flights were fading with the light. 

We had each done the Hornli ridge several times, but even knowing the way the descent by headtorch in snowy conditions took ages. We spent a chilly night in the Solvay hut, then headed down in the morning - a memorable way to spend my 38th birthday!Reaching the Zmutt ridge

                        

Thanks to Stu McAleese and Rich Cross - well worth missing your flights!

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