At the end of September, Olov Isaksson and Michael Rüter completed what they reckon might be a new route on Pointe Young on the north face of the Grandes Jorasses.
In his blog post, Isaksson explains:
“Michael and I were back at the Jorasses planning to either have a go at the Bonatti/Vaucher or a line that I’d spotted on Pointe Young last year. I couldn’t find the route in any topos but it looked like it could go.”
“Conditions were generally great but with some longer sections of thin unprotectable ice. About 400 meters up (where the routes splits into Knez-Skok [1980, 4c, A1, 55°, 750m] & Desécures/Robach) we continued straight up through a system of narrow steeper gullies with thin ice. After ca 350 additional meters we topped out at a notch on the NNW spur of Pointe Young. … We simul-climbed the route in 5 pitches encountering no difficulties higher than M5. It goes without saying that we found no traces of previous ascents but that can of course not be excluded.”
In the end, it’s refreshing to see climbers like Rüter and Isaksson with the unpretentious attitude of the increasingly rare, gentlemen alpinist. Their knowledge of the face leads them to ask about the possibility of, rather than claim, a new route, and draw a zen-like conclusion about its importance in the overall experience. Bravo.
“Who can be naive enough to believe that they’ve climbed a new line on the north face of Grandes Jorasses in 2011? Still, whether a line has been undocumentedly climbed or not doesn’t change the adventure and fun of heading up into the unknown.”
To see more photos and read the full blog post, go to www.olovisaksson.blogspot.com.