Friday, June 20, 2008

Climbing with the Girls

We did a really nice alpine bolted route on the German side of our "Haus Berg", the Untersberg, on Thursday. Valerie, Sabine, Jennifer and I climbed the 7 pitch/320m/V- route "Anfängerfreuden" on the Berchtesgadener Hochthron. Everything worked out very nicely; the route was dry, weather cooperated, the climb fit the experience and fitness of the group, and everyone moved efficiently.

The approach is around 1000 meters of elevation gain and then you have the climbing with a short bit of easy scrambling to link up pitches 2 & 3. In total there is about 1350 meters of hiking and climbing involved. We climbed as two 2 person rope teams. We shared the belay anchors so that the lead climber of the second team could directly follow the second climber of the first team. for the two crux pitches we needed about 30 minutes, and for the others a bit less. Efficient, clean, uncomplicated climbing.

Jennifer and Sabine making a short slab traverse just before a steep bit in the fourth rope length.

Coming up to the belay in the fourth rope length. The climbing is a slight bit overhanging with big and plentiful holds.

Valerie exiting at the end of the last pitch. The last rope length is a slab with cracks and water runnels.

We were finished at about 14:30. Te weather held for us and there were no problems while underway.

The route tops out at about 1950 meters, not too far away from the hut "
Stöhrhaus". This was the second alpine climbing route for my wife, Jennifer. Valerie and Sabine have done some multi-pitch climbing, but are also still gaining experience. With the long approach, including scrambling on steep grass and rocky slopes (with lots of loose rock), to get to the start of the route - Plus the long hiking descent - the whole endeavour was serious and demanding for everyone. The smile on my face says it all; we had a great, very full, day.

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