With such a strong high pressure sat over the Alps at the moment it would be rude not to make the most of it. Especially as my driving work has all but stopped. We decided to head up to the Argentiere basin to check it out. We had our sights set on the Colton-Brooks on the north face Of the Droites. We had no idea what the conditions were like on the bottom half of the face as its impossible to see from the valley but we decided it was worth a punt!!
Sunset after the First day. 5 hours from any hut. Mont Blanc in the Background with Grande Pilier d'Angle on the left our Original finishing point.
…..That’s the words Ally said to me when we topped out on Pointe Walker at 5.45pm after climbing the Colton/ Macintyre (with Alexis Crux Variation).
Our plan was to traverse the Jorasses, after climbing the north face, to the Canzio Hut at the Col des Grandes Jorasses for the first day of our epic link. We wanted to traverse the Rochefort Arete to the Forche hut and finish up the Chechinel Nominee on the Grande Pilier d’Angle to Mont Blanc.
Little did we know just how long the first day was going to be……
I LIKE UR FACE! Can I climb it?.........But of course.
So after recent successes on the Ginat With Ally Swinton. Myself, Gav and Jim headed up to the base of the Grandes Jorasses. We had our sights set on the Colton/Macintyre which is the prominent ice line leading right to left up the middle of the face. It features steep thin Alpine ice VI and tricky mixed climbing to join up with the walker spur. The route is 1200m long and pretty steep. After a slight sketch out at the start of the ladders down to the mer de glace as a couple of northern european type people warned of deep soft snow we plowed on up to our bivy site without any hassle, wondering what they had been on (about). After a bit’o smash and cheese we bedded down, waiting for the call of the alarm…..