29th July to 1st August 2012 Bramois and the Oberland

Photo 1. Climbers returning to the Jungfraujoch station with the Monch on the right.

Photo 2. The Aletschorn (4195m) from near the station.

Photo 3. Climbers descending one of the knife-edge ridges on the Monch.

On Sunday I visited Bramois Crag. This crag is located near Sion in the Rhone valley and is often dry when it is raining in the mountains.

For the last three days I have been in the Bernese Oberland. On Monday we attempted the South Ridge of the Eiger but had to turn back due to large amounts of snow on the route. We would have had to retrace this route late in the afternoon by which point the snow would have been very bad. Following a coffee at the hut we climbed the Monch (4099m). This route is climbed by an excellent ridge involving mixed climbing and some very narrow snow aretes which are best completed when still frozen.

Today, we climbed the Jungfrau (4158m). This is a brilliant mountain involving a steep snow pitch over a bergschrund, some mixed ground, rock scrambling and glacial work. We completed the descent of the steep snow pitch by 9am this morning. It is essential at the moment due to the warm temperatures in the Alps, to complete routes involving snow early in the day.

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