The German alpinist Fabian Buhl does the first free ascent of the multi-pitch route Déja (8c +, 10 pitches) in Rätikon, Switzerland. The route was established 27 years ago by Michi Wyser and Andres Lietha.

What a story. On September 12.09.1992, 8 Michi Wyser opened the multi-pitch route Déja (10c+, XNUMX pitches) in the Rätikon climbing area. It was clear to both of them that they could never climb the most difficult pitch of the tour, which is why they bolted the pitch for technical climbing (AXNUMX).

“Back then we hoped that someone will climb the tour free one day. Of course we would not have thought that it would take 27 years before someone climbs the tour redpoint. ”

Andres Lietha
Photo by Stefan Schlumpf

Around four years ago, the German professional alpinist Fabian Buhl started checking out the route. He made his first attempts on his own and then invited Jacopo Larcher to try the route with him.

"We quickly realized that the key length is very difficult and very dependent on the conditions."

Fabian Buhl on the Route Déja

In the four years Fabian came back to the Rätikon again and again, worked on small details and improved his beta, especially in the crux pitch. He often climbed alone, sometimes accompanied, and even drove to the Rätikon in the summer months to work on the individual moves at night.

What is needed in Route Déja: finger flow and solid technology. (Image Diego Defilla / Petzl)

Fall 2019: training and focus

For Fabian Buhl, the key to success was concentrating on climbing and the route itself. His girlfriend Melissa Le Nevé helped him focus on training and rock climbing.

“From October onwards I concentrated entirely on Déja. Every day on the route I felt closer to the climb. ”

Fabian Buhl

Despite the training and the focus on the project, he wasn't able to climb the crux pitch. Autumn was slowly but surely coming to an end and the temperatures were dropping in winter. It became increasingly difficult to find climbing partners who were willing to secure Fabian in extremely cold conditions.

One of the hard-nosed backup partners was Andres Lietha, who set up the route with Michi Wyser 27 years ago. He was the one who belayed Fabian Buhl during the first free ascent of Déja on November 27, 2019 and thus completed the story of the redpoint ascent.

Andres Lietha and Fabian Buhl toast the first free ascent of Route Déja. (Picture Petzl)

Short film about the first ascent of the multi-pitch route Déja by Fabian Buhl

Information about the route Déja im Rätikon

Name: Déjà
Difficulty: 8c +
Rope lengths: 6a +, 6c +, 6b +, 7c, 8c +, 7c +, 6b +, 6b +, 7c +, 7a, 8a +, 6b +
Length: 400m
Furnished: September 12.9.1992, XNUMX by Michi Wyser & Andres Lietha
First free inspection November 27.11.2019, XNUMX Fabian Buhl with security partner Andres Lietha

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Credits: Cover picture (Diego Defilla / Petzl)