Ice Trilogy by Robert Jasper
For many years Robert Jasper dreamt of climbing a trilogy of icefalls: ”I wanted to climb very special routes one after another. For the choice of the routes I laid more importance on the aesthetic of the lines than on pure difficulties. The lines should be ice- and mixed routes of different times of the evolution in the history of this sport. I wanted to span a personal bow over the fast developing ice and mixed climbing of the last 15 years.” The experience to climb during several days is challenging; endurance, team spirit and motivation are as important as weather, luck and good conditions of the chosen routes.
On January 3 – 5 Robert Jasper and Bernd Rathmayr made a successful attempt of climbing three ice routes in the Swiss region of Bernese Oberland. The first route they chose was a new route called B.A.S.E. on the icefall in Lauterbrunnental. The icefall is characterized by its extraordinary beautiful line and exceptional length of over 420m, nearly vertical from base to the top.
The second part of the project was Allmendudler. In spite of the strong Föhn blowing the following day, the two ice climbers accompanied by the photographer Klaus Fengler headed to the base of the icefall. “Only if you are standing below the icefall you can say if it’s save to climb it or if it supports your health better to go and have a couple of beers in the village. That day the lake of cold air in the valley of Kandersteg withstood a long time to the Föhn and the ice conditions were just perfect. Because of the length of the route and the time consuming difficulties fast climbing meant a great advantage and for sake I knew the most difficult pitches from other attempts. With such tired arms a red point ascension would not have been possible in the grade M9+/10-“ recalls Robert Jasper. Everything went perfect and after 7 hours the first ascent was completed.
The party completed their ice trilogy by climbing the line Crack Baby, one of the best icefall climbs all over Europe first climbed by Xavier Bongard and Michael Gruber in winter 1993. The party reached the base of Breitwangflue with backcountry skis in the morning of the next day. Tired but motivated they started climbing the dream line of a huge 340m stream of ice. They got to the top after 4,5 hours of continuous climbing.
WI 6+, 420m
Valley of Lauterbrunnen, Buechenbach
1st one- day ascent: Robert Jasper & Bernd Rathmayr, January, 3, 2008, 7,5 hours, OS.
1st ascent: Ralph Jörg und Peter von Kanel in two days - 29. and 31. of December 2007 (on 29th reaching from base pitch 8, abseiling again, then on 31. abseiling from top to the end of pith 8 and finishing the route)
M 9+/10-, 350m
1st ascent: Robert Jasper & Bernd Rathmayr, January, 4, 2008, 7 hours; the route was equipped in 2003 and 2008.
3. Crack Baby
WI 6, 340m
1st ascent: Xavier Bongard und Michael Gruber in1993, nowadays an absolute extreme classic.
Source: Robert and Daniela Jasper