There were several big first ascents in the Greater Ranges over the past few months, including this one by Paul Ramsden and Tim Miller. The two made an alpine-style first ascent of The Phantom Line, a 1,200-metre ED+ up the north face of a previously unclimbed 6,563-metre peak which they called Jugal Spire in the Jugal Himal area of Nepal.
Ramsden, known for his dozens of first ascents in the Himalayas over the years, said he thinks it’s one of the steepest walls in the country. The line they took is the only weakness up the 1.2-kilometre tall granite face. They spent five days climbing.
Ramsden said that he’s mentoring Miller on big mountain routes and that their 37-pitch climb is the first of likely many.
About the grade, ED+ stands for Extremely Difficult in the European alpine grading system. There is only one grade harder on the scale, which is EDx or beyond extremely difficult, but few routes have ever been graded that severe.