July 31th and august 1th 2012 Paul Régnier, Pierre Olivier Blanc et Francois Ranise entered the foot (3092m) of the 3983m high Grande Pic de la Meije, to Climb the Allain- Leiniger route. This route is a beautiful almost 1000m rock climb on the south face of the Grand Pic de la Meije in the massif des Ecrins south of Grenoble – France. Rated TD (Tres Difficile/Very difficult), it consist of numerous pitches in 5 and one famous icy chimney in 6.
The La Meije was one of the last peaks to be climbed in the French Alpes due to the technical difficulties. It’s an 8 to 10hours climb up and a 4h decent of the glacier on the north side. Paul, Pierre and Francois had a late start waiting for the sun to warm them up, and then they entered the route and climbed up with heavy back packs containing the necessary gear. Having some difficulties finding the route, they were happy to be able to make a bivy at the edge of the squared glacier at 3600m (10.800ft).
……and up the chimney we go!
Just before sunset, after a memorable night, Paul shoot a video at the bivi, as all happened to have spent the night in their Valandré bags. Paul in a Swing 900, PO in his old time Lafayette and Francois in a Bloody Mary. After summiting, Paul sent the video to us in Belcaire.
The famous BLING sticker!
Paul, Pierre Olivier and Francois have received a Bling sticker and our Flipper booklet containing all information’s of the 14 8000m peaks to thank them for the video.
The booklet is “super gear” to bring along. It allows you to play “the 8000m peak quiz” in the bivy or in the camp – EX: Who was the first to climb Kanchenjunga in winter, and what date? and….Who was the first wonan on Nanga….with or without ox?
Send us a Valandré video, and you will receive a BLING STICKER and the FLIPPER BOOKLET!
We at Valandre salute all the athletes who made it to the games. The sacrifices made in daily training, and the discipline imposed on all athletes, will for some payoff during the games: Let the competition start and may the best win!
The Olympic champion has to combine several virtues. A disciplined Seoul, drives the body to higher performances on a daily scale, always within the personal maximum (Individual sports), a zen like kind of constant meditation.
Those who the next coming weeks, becomes Olympic Champion in their specialty, represent the summit of their generation.
But the summit of the summit is Mount Olympus, rising up to 2.917m (9.570ft) and the highest mountain in Greece. House to the twelve Olympian gods, this mountain is the mother of all SPORTS. And to the Olympian gods, those who summit are: Olympian sports men…..in other words Alpinists!
Saturday 26th at 05:30pm (17:30) Hirotaka Takeushi (竹内洋岳) summited his final 14 8000 Dhaulagiri (8167m/26.795ft). Kenro Nakajima (Climber and cameraman) was due to take part in the summit push, but apparently he turned around between CII (6600m) and CIII at 7400m.
Hirotaka collected all the necessary gear, and carried on alone. An interesting fact, as Hirotaka is nick named “Solitary man” in Japan.
We are now waiting for his summit images, and eventually summit videos. According to information’s, Hiro should air in the “NEWS ZERO” on NTV today at 22:54h (Japan time)
A BIG congratulations to MISTER Hirotaka Takeushi for his final 14 8000, and the fact that the question who would become the first Japanese to complete this task, has now found the final answer.
Generally this year was bad on the south side of Everest. Abnormally high temperatures in badging sunlight, radiated the Khumbu icefall and the Lhotse wall, increasing the risk of avalanches. The icefall, was and is unstable and with a very high risk as it was moving from day to day.
Russel is an experienced old timer now, and his judgment stands clear. If there are a major collaps in the Kumbu icefall, not only can this have fatal consequences in the BC, but it can also block the “bottled climbers”, descending from a summit attempt.
Chilian climbers heading for the South Col May 17th.
Ralf Dujmovits did try his “topless” Everest attempt. Climbing without oxygen, solo from CIII, and carrying all his personal gear up to the South Col just the way it should be done. Suisse speed climber Uli Steck, was in Ralf’s tracks and arrived later at the South Col. Together they would go for the summit next day (May 18th).
A “Burned out” Ralf at the South Col of Everest
During the night, Ralf realized that he had burned out, and with his experience of 27 8000, he knew his new heading: Down. It’s obvious that Ralf had not completely recovered from the sickness of sinusitis during the climb…..so a burn out at the South Col is not surprising. Uli Steck however, summited topless the 18th.
During the decent, Ralf crossed the organized expeditions heading for the summit. “Climbers” bottled up in CII, heading to become the first boy on the block, to climb Everest.
Climbing Everest? No comments.
Summit window is reported open from the 24 to 27 May. And the Khumbu Icefall is roasting in the sun…
Old friendships are important, so I had the pleasure to meet with Ralf Dujmovits who introduced me to his new wife Gerlinde Kaltenbrunner at the 2012 winter ISPO show in Munich. Ralf reached his last 8000m peak (Lhotse) in 2009 and became the first German on the 14 8000 and number 16 in the line:
Ralf is a strong and dedicated DAV Guide, and his record contains numerous successful expeditions, guiding clients to a 8000m summit. A true pillar in German High Altitude climbing, and a great man.
Gerlinde Kaltenbrunner is a Austrian climber, out of the “old school”, extremely attached and sensitive to the notion of “The mountain”. August 2011 Gerlinde and Ralf engaged a climb of the Japanese route of the North Pillar of K2. Here Gerlinde summited her final 8000m peak and became the first woman to complete the 8000m without supplemental oxygen:
1998 — Cho Oyu,
2001 — Makalu,
2002 — Manaslu,
2003 — Nanga Parbat,
2004 — Annapurna I,
2004 — Gasherbrum I,
2005 — Shisha Pangma,
2005 — Gasherbrum II,
2006 — Kangchenjunga,
2007 — Broad Peak,
2008 — Dhaulagiri,
2009 — Lhotse,
2010 — Mount Everest,
2011 — K2.
A full report of the K2 climb 2011, will be published in a 32 page report in NATIONAL GEOGRAFIC, translated and published worldwide, and due to appear in April 2012.