Rappelling - directly from the car park - via the route "Morning Sun" into the gorge Ova del Vallun at Silvaplana. A toprope was already attached to it and the group split up into the introductory group and those who are already climbing. The Eiskletterkurs Raus and Rauf were in full swing.
Frozen water, vertical
I'll tell you one thing: the wall, or the icefall, did not look so steep from below. Alright feasible. But if you hang in there .. uiui! The "70-80 ° steepness with short, vertical upswings" (so the Ice climbing guide Hot Ice Switzerland East) are very steep! Then you fight with the unusual equipment, the unfamiliar movements, with the cold ...
The fingers are cramping around the ice tools, and after a few meters of altitude, the forearms are thick, one can no longer feel the fingers anyway. And yet there is only one thing: high! Do not fall! Quickly somehow rest somewhere, as soon as the opportunity offers. Press down the sewing machine, load your feet! Feet is actually wrong, because you are not, you are in the ice. With a minimal tip of crampons. Hang his heels, so the theory. But theory is patient!
Fought off, I'm drained. Proud but quite exhausted, and with a huge grin on my face, I sit down and feed calories, watch, drink tea. Actually, it is always eaten. Fortunately, we have some experienced ice climbers, who conjure up all kinds of high calorie delicacies from their backpacks. Includes cooker, of course. Thank you guys!
Markus go up, prepare the right side of the icefall, turn the eggs, loosely hanging on one arm, build the stand. When drained, he then turns even more egg screws. Then the brave ones go into the lead. I'll leave it at Toprope for today, tomorrow is another day. There are probably even less steep routes, and I'll climb there too.
After much romp we drive through our frozen food Salecina, Salecina is a very own house number: a self-managed domicile, with all sorts of services and tasks for the guests, evening planning round and pi-pa-po. But nice. Getting used to, community-friendly, but nice. Since Salecina is a foundation, non- or low-income earners are promoted, there are three price categories: normal earner, the cost recovery price and the low-income earner. You give as much as you want and can. The concept works, various studies and self-experiments on the subject "pay what you want" confirm that people rather give more than less. In the evening there was quite a delicious pizza for all - usually the guests cook in Salecina itself, but on Saturday night we were cooked. Thanks for that! We did the tidying up, the washing up and afterwards we made ourselves comfortable on the cuddly corner in front of the open fireplace, browsing all kinds of alpine literature brought by Markus. The next morning, we prepared breakfast for all Salecina residents and part-time residents and set off.
Unfortunately, the icefall in Surlej, which should be it for today, already occupied by a Zweierseilschaft, the icefall itself was pretty snowed. For safety reasons, we rescheduled and went back to Ova del Vallun. There was a lot of snow at night, the way into the gorge was quite difficult. First take-home message: rather freeze than sweat! Freezing after sweating is a lot worse than freezing while walking! And: good, breathable clothing is extremely important! The DirectAlpine Guide Jacket did its job steaming good. The Jack Wolfskin Do not wear over-rain pants.
All suitable icefalls were occupied today, so we marched on to the end of the accessible part of the gorge. The snowfall became stronger. Somewhat unmotivated we practiced building stands, bored hourglasses. Then, a huge shock: J. broke down to the belly button in a snow-covered and frozen pool! It went off lightly, his clothes kept off most of the ice water. Worried, we all made schomal change clothes. It was not necessary, fortunately. Slowly it got uncomfortable, more and more snow thawing on clothes. Cold wetness gets into all the cracks. There were no beautiful, climbable icefalls here, just short pieces between lots of snow and scrub.
At two o'clock we made our way back. Only there was no way to see! The trail was snowed in and could only be guessed at. Powder snow avalanches sprayed down into the gorge from left and right. A beautiful sight and cruel at the same time. The snow of the avalanches lay meters high on the suspected path. Sinking up to the navel, occasionally breaking into the stream, I tracked half the way. S. then took over the last half. But hey, that was pretty fun and then let the adrenaline level rise again a little 🙂