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30.06.2011

Grandes Jorasses & Rochefort Ridge

At the 23rd of June I drove to Chamonix together with Peter Ortner. Because Peter had just time for a few days we took the cog railroad to Montenvers and made our way to the Leschaux Hut.
When we arrived there and wanted to dry our equipment, we got to know the host of the hut, Nadia: „Why didn’t you call? The hut is full! Please go out!“

We tried to explain, that we just wanted to dry our things and eat something and that we could easily sleep on the floor but she just gave us a tent and said: „Please go outside!“

So we slept outside in our tent and froze when our alarm clock rang at 4 o' clock the next morning. We cancelled the plan to climb the Northface of Grandes Jorasses.  Instead we spent the time drying our equipment.

In the afternoon  a few other climbers and friends of Nadia reached the hut. They said: „Grandes Jorasses is too dangerous! Bad conditions – you should go home!“ and „Be more friendly to Nadia!“

In the evening we talked to the other climbers and they asked us which route we chose to go. Peter explained that we planned to do the MacIntyre – Colton and that we will start at four in the morning. Again they attacked us and insulted: „The MacIntyre-Colton is too dangerous!“ „You will kill yourself! Get up earlier! We will start at midnight! And we will only do a 300m route!“

To smooth the ruffled feelings we started at 3 o' clock in the morning and reached the start of the route two hours later. The conditions in the wall were pretty bad. Loads of snow and not much ice. It was a big challenge but after thirteen hours we reached the top – but it was still a far way to our goal. It took us until the evening to reach our bivi at the Rochefort Ridge at the Col des Grandes Jorasses. The next morning we climbed to the Dent du Geant, a 150 metres high rock spire. We took the normal route to the peak and rappeled down towards the ridge. A few hours later we were sitting in the cable car to Chamonix again.

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