Monday, 28 January 2008

La Grave...part 5

For our last route of the trip we ventured to Vallon du Diable. This was a new area for us though we had been in for a look in the past. The climbs on the south facing cliffs were deteriorating and we saw and heard avalanches of ice and rock coming down the gullies. At one point, the path was affected by avalanche debris from both sides.
We picked out routes and saw climbers on L'Autisme, Les Hermos a Godo and some folk on a south facing route who were either very brave or mad! Ron and I climbed Les Larmes du Chaos (II,4) on good ice with some typically Scottish spindrift on the third pitch which made us feel very much at home! We found that the belays differed a bit from the guidebook description as it seems that some new belay chains have been added on the left (as you climb) for the top of the first pitch and again at the top of the third pitch.
Our last day was spent back at Alpes d'Huez skiing the black runs of the Tunnel and Sarenne. Both are lovely long runs with Sarenne giving a great trip through the ever narrowing valley back to a lift which gives a bit of an up and down return right to the car park.
We ended of the trip with a good meal at a local restaurant before an early start the next day to get to Grenoble and a bit of an Easyjet epic to return to Inverness!


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