Japanese Couloir on Grandes Jorasses

Roger Cararach Soler, Marc Toralles and Bru Busom have climbed the big and difficult Japanese Couloir that heads up the middle of the Grandes Jorasses.

The three strong Spanish climbers repeated the rarely-climbed 1,100-metre line between Pointe Whymper and Pointe Walker in a 24-hour push.

First climbed over 10 days in March of 1972 by Japanese climbers Yasuo Kato, Toku Nakano, Yasuo Kanda, Hideo Miyazaki and Kazuhide Seito, as reported by planetmountain.com, with a grade of VI 5.10 A2.

The 2018 Spanish ascent had to move fast over an unformed mixed route because the thin ice veins weren’t “in.”

The second ascent was in 2008 by Arnaud Guillaume and Julien Desecures and the third was in 2014 by Adam George and Jon Griffith.

After their ascent, Griffith (one of the world’s top alpine photographers) wrote on his blog here, “Above reared the meat of the climb, a series of steep corners that would be desperately hard if it wasn’t for the thin smearing of placage ice that had gradually built up layer upon layer from the wet weather during the summer.

“As I seconded Adam up these ice pitches I actually found myself having the most fun I’ve ever had on the Jorasses. The ice was the exact perfect mix of steep, thin, but bomber placements.

“Thin hooks in squeaky ice all the way up and out- I thought back to Julien’s words and understood what he was talking about now.”

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