Oct 22, 2018

Petit Flambeau - Via Laurent Grivel

 From Punta Helbronner there is a number of great alpine routes, which some are easily accessed then others. One of these is via Laurent Grivel on Petit Flambeau.
A new modern alpine route that follow ledges and ridges from the south side of Petit Flambeau up to the summit above col des Flambeaux (3407m)

Start from the Helbronner lift, take the lift down to the old Torino Hut, depending on season it might be possible to go direct out from the lift station to the glacier.
Head towards the Flambeaux col, but take the south side descent´ding down the glacier, but stay close to the rock. Not to far out on the glacier, a lot of crevasses, big ones!!

Aime for a red section of the cliff with a drilled bolt/hanger, which appears just when you might start to feel unhappy to descend any further!
Go up the first section of quite loose rock, tip toeing on easy feets...with grade 3-2 scrambling.
To the base of higher quality rock that goes up a steeper section over a crack formation. An other bolt in place. Just stay in the middle section of the rock face and the route is obvious.
After this you get to the "Mezza Luna" a short but really nice crux section over a half moon shaped crack. Also protected with a bolt.
The next section is again a little harder, but always good protection, bolts in place and good cracks to put in own gear.
The last short pitches follows more the ridge up towards the very exposed summit ridge.
Feels like climbing on bricks and lego...!

From the summit, easy scrambling back towards the glacier and the Flambeaux col but this time on the north side. And the last bit over the glacier to the best coffee in a high place at the bar at Helbronner.

  -We had a short but beautiful day out on this route. The access is very easy, but still we needed to take care avoiding the crevasses that at this time, beginning of October had opened up quite a bit.
The first section of scrambling is still an interesting undertaking, cause of all the loose rocks and its a big risk of a massiv rock fall. So better avoided in warm conditions!
Finally, getting up to the first section of "real" climbing was a relief. And my lead up the Mezza was just as beautiful climbing as anywhere on the Mont Blanc granit of friction. 
Then staying concentrated up the last sections and traversing the "Lego Ridge", well its spectacular enough for a rest day!

Via Laurent Grivel.  Petit Flambeau - Italy, Courmayeur

30-40m rope, best made in short pitches
4-6 QD´s
Red Alien
Green & Red Omega Cams
Small set of mid size wires
Slings for bealy
Glacier equipment
Link to Gulliver.it - Route

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