Roger Schäli and Bernd Rathmayr add new mixed climb to Kandersteg
Swiss alpinists Roger Schäli and Bernd Rathmayr have made the first ascent of Fäderliecht, a new mixed climb at Kandersteg in Switzerland.
For decades Kandersteg in Switzerland has been recognised as one of the best ice climbing areas in the Alps and despite its popularity, every year someone manages to discover something hitherto unclimbed.
In mid-January Bernd Rathmayr teamed up with Michael Berger to try a 70m crack which, probably due to the loose rock, had discouraged others from attempting it in the past. The due were forced to retreat but on 6 February Rathmayr returned, this time with Roger Schäli. After dealing with the first M7+ pitch protected with trad gear and only two bolts, Schäli then tackled the centerpiece of the route, and M9 protected by just 2 bolts. Rising temperatures forced the Swissman to remove all the loose icicles. After squeezing through a 30cm chimney he belayed Rathmayr who then led on through and breached the large icy overhang (M8, 1 bolt). The final pitch ended on a large ledge from where they descended via the classic Allmenalpfall, opting agains a possible 2 pitch extension due to loose ice on the rock and fading batteries in one headlamp.
The new climb has been called Fäderliecht and its danger should not be underestimated, as Schäli explained: "loose rock, bad possibilities for a retreat, ice fall in particular from the large hanging dagger at the start of the route."
Links: rogerschaeli.ch, La Sportiva, Petzl, FB Roger Schaeli