Super Rare Ski Mountaineering Line Gets Skied In French Alps | “Once In A Lifetime Conditions”
On April 10, 2016 Yannick Boissenot, Stéphane Roguet, Nicolas Brunel and Titi Gentet skied the Austrian route on the North Face of Les Courtes on the Mont Blanc massif above the Argentiere basin in the French Alps. The north face of Les Cortes is an 800 meter route ranked ED+, 50°/55°. Impressive line indeed.
Here’s the video the team made of skiing the North Face of Les Courtes on the Mont Blanc massif:
According toPlanetMountain.com, this is an extremely rare ski mountaineering line that was first climbed in August 1961 by Austrian alpinists Helmuth Drachsler and Walter Gstrein. It was first skied on July 3, 1977 by Daniel Chauchefoin then again in 1995 by Pierre Tardivel, Emmanuel Ballot and Edouard Cottignies. The first snowboard descent was pulled off in 2006 by Roch Malnuit with Yohan Courcelles on skis. That’s not many people who have skid the Austrian route on the North Face of Les Courtes.
PlanetMountain.com writes that “Conditions in the Mont Blanc massif are truly exceptional at present, described as being “once in a lifetime” by insiders due to recent extremely damp snowfall that has literally plastered the north faces white.” It’s time to get after it.
Stef Roguet and Yannick Boissenet ascended via the face while Titi Gentet and Nico Brunel climbed the northeast face. Both parties met at the top of the North Face of Les Courtes at 3856 meters and skied the route together. A bit of sluff, a couple of rappels, and some steep turns later they completed a big ski mountaineering line that rarely gets skied. Congratulations!
Read more about the ski descent of the North Face of Les Courtes on PlanetMountain.com.