Thursday, July 16, 2015

Climbing Team Begins Ascent of "Arctic Dawn Wall"

A talented team of climbers has set their sights on an incredibly difficult and remote wall in Greenland which has been dubbed the "Arctic Dawn Wall." The team – which includes climbers Leo Houlding, Matt Pickles, and Joe Möhle, along with filmmakers Matt Pycroft and Waldo Etherington –  departed for a seldom visited region of Renlan where they will attempt a climb of a massive granite peak known as the Mirror Wall.

At 1200 meters (3937 feet) in height, the rock face of the Mirror Wall is even taller than the famous Dawn Wall in Yosemite. It is said to be incredibly smooth and difficult, with an approach that is guarded by snow and ice seracs. The team has scouted a route to the summit, but will have to inspect it to ensure that it is safe and that it will provide the access that they expect.

Just getting to the Mirror Wall is an adventure. Located in a remote region that is only accessible by helicopter this time of year. Before they could begin the expedition, the team had to first ship all of its gear and supplies to Iceland in June, and than have it airlifted to what would become their base camp by light aircraft. The men followed on earlier in the week, and have started working on establishing their BC before starting the ascent of the wall.

The expedition is sponsored by Berghaus, and regular updates will be posted to a special section of the company's website that can be found here. Unfortunately for those of us who live in the U.S., that site is redirecting to the local version of the Beghaus website, which does not have the updates just yet. I'm told they are trying to work out this issue, so hopefully we can follow the progress directly soon. In the meantime, updates are also being posted to Facebook as well.

According to recent reports, Leo and team have experienced some bad weather to start their adventure. That weather is disrupting communications to a degree, and preventing them from launching their climb. Hopefully conditions will improve soon, and they can start their ascent.

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