Lisetta, new rock climb up Col dei Bos in the Dolomites
Last July Andrea Simonini, Giacomo Duzzi and Lorenzo Moretto made the ground-up first ascent of "Lisetta" (250m, IX-, 7b+) up Col dei Bos, Fanis, Dolomites.
After having established numerous new routes I was taken in by the thought of climbing a new line in the mountains... and so there we were, rucksacks laden with ropes and various bits of gear and a precise idea: forge a new route in the limestone paradise called the Dolomites. The SE Face of Col de Bos in the Fanis massif had caught my attention, wedged between the Tofana de Rozes and the Falzarego towers. A beautiful line climbs the righthand side called Francesa but I wanted to breach the unclimbed central, yellow section... off we went.
Lorenzo and I climbed the first two days, on 13 and 14 July, and during the approach we talked about the first ascent ethics in the hope that we wouldn't discover any unpleasant surprises, i.e. other routes nearby. We geared up and discussed our tactics, refined over the last couple of years thanks to the superb advice given to us by Nicola Tondini and Nicola Sartori: "free climb as much as possible, hang off a cliff-hook where necessary and place a peg. If this is bomber then continue, otherwise place a bolt". Safety is the name of the game, to make sure that the route is well protected and consequently repeated by others... Having said that, this approach certainly doesn't belittle the psychological commitment in any way, rest assured, as the run-outs are there for all to see. Friends 0,5-0,75-1-2 BD will be needed to integrate the in-situ pro, and the exposure is truly unique.
We quickly dispatched with the first two easy pitches, then the difficulties began. The yellow ocher wall steepened and the rock was so compact that the pegs bent as we tried to hammer them in, while the pockets were blind... but the drill made short work of this and worked like a dream to create the third spectacular pitch IX- (7b+). This was followed by an incredible flake (the bolt was placed later to avoid rope drag as the ropes slid into the flag and jammed on the Friends) and then a pleasant VIII (7a) pitch that led to to the base of an imposing final pillar, steep and defying the law of gravity.
I returned to this highpoint on 22 July with Giacomo, intent on finishing the route, so we repeated the lower section and freed it and then set off towards the summit. Following a stunning line we created three more spectacular pitches... Duzz was great and enabled me to recover as he established the beautiful 6th pitch graded VIII+ (7a+). We reached the summit of Col dei Bos at 19.00 and we are on the top of the Col dei Bos, took some pictures, sent a message to Lisa and Lorenzo (who couldn't come that day) and abseiled off
Joy, satisfaction and a fabulous sunset repaid us for the hardship and suffering, for what is our first route in the Dolomites! I suggested the name "Lisetta", dedicating our Dolomite rock climb to my girlfriend, overworked at home but close to us here on the mountain and far from home. I'm certain that those who repeat the route will have plenty of fun.
Thanks to: Patagonia, Wild Climb, +Watt and Risk Protect
by Andrea Simonini
TOPO: Lisetta, Col dei Bos, Dolomites