The two alpinists Dani Arnold and Roger Schäli report the first ascent of an ice climbing route on the Mürrenfluh in Stechelberg: Exocet (Wi 6+, Expo, M6, A1).
A report by Roger Schäli
On Tuesday January 19, Dani Arnold and Roger Schäli climbed the first ascent Exocet (300m, Wi 6+, Expo, M6, A1) in Lauterbrunnen valley. The line is at the very back of the valley on the east wall below the Mürren-Gimmelwald Bahn. The first two 60 meters are easy and are in the areas Wi3 and M3. However, it is a highlight to climb under this large block.
Dani Arnold and Roger Schäli have both climbed the Exocet route on Cerro Standhardt in Patagonia in the past, where you climb under an almost identical block. And so it was immediately clear to both of them how they would christen the new route on the Mürrenfluh.
Mentally demanding climbing
The third pitch begins in an overhanging chimney with moderately good rock. After two Artif climbing moves from a pecker and a bad hook, the rope length changes to three-dimensional cone climbing. The stand is safely in a niche. The fourth pitch is with Wi 3+ the most psychologically demanding length. Dani led the length of the rope and could not attach a safety device over the entire length of the cone, since the cone was never solid enough to attach to the rock, even high up.
The route then continues over vertical ice until you reach a solid pillar by means of a spectacular traverse and can thus get off the route. From the exit we rappelled five times (60 meters each) to get back to the entrance. The stands and abseil stands are drilled.
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Credits: Image material Roger Schäli