Alpine Conditions Report

by Jon Griffith, Alpine Exposures North Face of the Grandes Jorasses Chamonix, France: Unseasonably warm temperatures over the last 10 days has turned excellent North face climbing conditions into a bit of a nightmare.What were once gleaming ice lines quickly turned into rotting slush on anything not North facing. A climber on the Eperon des Cosmiques (3700m) in shorts yesterday helped to confirm how hot it has been. However what´s bad now is actually good for the future and once it starts getting cold again the lines should get very fat.There have been multiple ascents of the classic north faces around the Alps, from the Grandes Jorasses to the Matterhorn. Most of the classic lines (Colton-Macintyre, Ginat, Charlet-Platonov, Cecchinel Nomine) are in pretty good nick it´s just a case of getting them in the cold. It´s not all doom and gloom though as there is cold weather on the way and those tired of the big walk-ins and outs of the last month can enjoy the delights of mechanized transport as the Montenvers (Jorasses, Verte) and the Grand Montets (Droites, Courtes, Verte) are open again on the 25th. Otherwise the Rebuffat on the tour Ronde and Filo D´Arianna on the Maudit are seeing regular ascents. Pelissier and M6 Solar on the Lachenal are also in good nick for those who want minimal effort getting to and from the climb. More conditions reports