Type: Trad, Alpine, 1640 ft (497 m), 9 pitches, Grade II
FA: André Contamine, Pierre Labrunie and Robert Wohlschlag on 30 August 1959.
Page Views: 4,165 total · 38/month
Shared By: Priti Wright on Aug 4, 2015 · Updates
Admins: Luc-514, David Riley, Bogdan Petre

You & This Route

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Description Suggest change

Two starts: Climb either directly up the traditional start, right of a dihedral, via a splitter crack which leaves directly from the glacier (French-6a+/US-5.10b), or on the left side of the dihedral up some nice hand cracks (5b/5.8, requires traversing back to the right to regain line).
Above the direct start, climb a slab on the left (4a/5.5) to reach a broad crack that you climb until a large ledge, Pitch 1 (5b/5.8).
Then climb a small dihedral (5b/5.8) to reach a quartz ledge, P2.
On the right, a 40m crack (5b/5.8) leads to the ridge. Halfway up this pitch, there is a variant via another crack on the left, then on the right, which leads to the same belay, P3 (same difficulty).
Stay on the edge of the ridge for one pitch (4c/5.6), P4.
You then reach a large ledge on the right of a 50m high slab wall. now come the Money Pitches: Traverse to the left (5c/5.9) to reach a crack and use this to climb the wall (2 pitches, 6a+/5.10c or A1, with some pitons in-situ).
Continue near the ridge via 2 pitches (4a/5.5). Climb onto the ridge for a final pitch (4a/5.5) and follow this to the summit of the route by easier rocks.

Decent:  Rappel down the neighboring route (near Harold & Maud) with 2x 50m ropes, or if you carried your gear with you, walk from the top of the route to the Aiguille du Midi tramway.  For more info: https://www.camptocamp.org/routes/54576/fr/pointe-lachenal-voie-contamine

(Corrections include subbing "French" for UK (grades are not UK but French), adding descent information.  Based on both personal experience and checking for consensus from Camp-to-Camp: https://www.camptocamp.org/routes/54576/fr/pointe-lachenal-voie-contamine)

Location Suggest change

You can also do a direct start 5.10c, excellent quality crack.

Protection Suggest change

Crampons and ice axe for the approach, 2x50m rope, helmet, 1 set of friends and 1 set of nuts, 10 quickdraws, slings.