The Swiss mountain guide and climber Yannick Glatthard repeats this in the French Annot Le Voyage (E10, 7a). The line, first climbed by James Pearson in 2017, is considered one of the most difficult pure trad routes in France.
It was a short trip, but one that had it all: In the French climbing area Annot succeed Yannick Glatthard a quick ascent of the tough Trad route The Journey (E10, 7a). "Speaking of trad climbing in Europe, Le Voyage is definitely one of the most beautiful lines," enthuses the Bernese Oberlander. The scenery in the sector King's Chamber, the rock and how the route pulls itself up, that is very powerful.
Little time, fast progress
Yannick Glatthard checked out the route in the top rope for two days. "Even if there are two or three runouts, the placements are all solid." Challenging was the key point for him because his fingers almost didn't fit into the small three-finger hole.
After two days of project planning and one rest day, there wasn't much time left to dry things out. "It was a stressful situation for me," says Yannick Glatthard. Especially since after the short detour to France it would go straight to Greece.
A non-binding attempt leads to success
On the following day, the Oberlander starts the route without any great ambitions. He tried without pressure and just wanted to feel how things were going. "I already found a great flow in the first part, which is rated 7a," says Yannick Glatthard.
When the crux came up well, he realized that it was going to be a serious attempt after all. "I then continued climbing and, thanks to two or three good rest positions, was able to get out surprisingly easily."
Annot's King-Line is certainly one of the greater achievements of Glatthard's climbing career to date. The fact that Green Spit (8b+) in Valle Dell'Orco is still his personal highlight shouldn't hide the importance of his most recent ascent: "Le Voyage is something huge for me".
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Credits: Cover picture and article pictures: Yannick Glatthard