The new route on the Eiger north face, Merci La Vie, is repeated two times within a week: The two Swiss Nina Caprez and Sascha Lehmann climb the route rotpunkt.

A few weeks ago the Oberlander succeeded Roger Schäli the first free ascent of the difficult multi-pitch route Thank you life on the north face of the Eiger. Now the route was repeated twice within a week. Roger's statement to LACRUX that the route could become a classic seems to be true.

Nina-Caprez_Merci-La-Vie_Eiger_Genferpfeiler_Credits-Mountain-Feeling --- Severin-Karrer
Nina Caprez during the red point ascent of Merci La Vie on the Eiger. (Photo Severin Karrer)

First repetition by Nina Caprez

The first contender for a rerun was Nina Caprez. The Swiss developed together with Roger Schäli and Sean Villanueva the 8-pitch tour on the Eiger in autumn 2019. Her motivation to be the first to repeat the route was accordingly high. She succeeded when she started the route in mid-August with the support of Roger Schäli.

A few days after their inspection, the Burgdorfer also announced Sascha Lehmann his red point ascent. Accompanied by Tobias Suter, he climbed all pitches and got the second repetition of the route. On his ascent, he climbed up to pitches 1, 3 & 8, Sascha climbed all pitches in the lead.

Sascha Lehmann and Tobias Suter at the exit from Merci La Vie. (Photo Sascha Lehmann)

Via the multi-pitch route Merci La Vie

The route Merci La Vie has Roger Schäli envisaged years ago and set up a first pitch. In 2019 formed together with Nina Caprez and Sean Villanueva a strong team that set up seven more pitches on the Geneva pillar of the Eiger north face and with it the route Thank you life opened. Because the season was coming to an end, the three had to postpone a free ascent to the current season.

In terms of distances and security, it is currently the most difficult route on the Geneva Pillar. The difficulties are distributed as follows:


  1. Rope length: 6c
  2. pitch: 7b +
  3. Pitch length: 8a
  4. Pitch length: 6c +
  5. Rope length: 7c + / 8a
  6. Rope length: 7c / 7c +
  7. pitch: 7b +
  8. Pitch length: 4+


8 pitches (300m, 8a max, 7c mandatory)
Material: 10 quickdraws, 4 x 60cm tape slings, 2 x 120cm tape slings, 1 set of totem cams
First ascent: Roger Schäli, Nina Caprez, Sean Villanueva, August 2019
1st red point ascent: Roger Schäli, July 2020

Topo of the Route Merci La Vie on the Geneva pillar of the Eiger north face

Topo of the multi-pitch route Merci La Vie. (Credits: Roger Schäli / Nina Caprez)
Topo of the multi-pitch route Merci La Vie. (Credits: Roger Schäli / Nina Caprez)

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Credits: Cover picture Severin Karrer