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Five Kilometers of Climbing in Greenland

This summer Caroline Morel, Andres Lietha, Michi Wyser, Tom Holzhauser, Michi Tresch and Toni Lamprecht climbed over five kilometers of new terrain on ten different routes in the south of Greenland. [Photo] Toni Lamprecht

A Swiss-Bavarian group of climbers established over 5000 meters of climbing in ten new routes in Southern Greenland this August on the island of Quvnerit. The group consisted of Caroline Morel, Andres Lietha, Michi Wyser, Tom Holzhauser, Michi Tresch and Toni Lamprecht. Southern Greenland offers the potential for many more first ascents; Lamprecht compared the rock quality with that of the Alps.

Quvnerit Island is located at the very southern tip of Greenland and has recently seen a lot of attention from the alpine community, though it’s first documented visit from climbers was in 1971. In 2010 Quvnerit got attention from the Piolet-d’Or winning trip that included Nicolas Favresse, Olivier Favresse, Sean Villanueva and Ben Ditto. For more info on this Greenland trip visit this link.

At the end of July this year the Swiss-Bavarian team began their six week trip, which was the second trip to the island for many of them, having visited and climbed there in 2004 when they put up nine first ascents. Blessed with good weather, the climbers divided into smaller groups and and went to work establishing routes ranging from 5.10 to 5.12 and seven to sixteen pitches.

On August 1, Morel, Lietha, and Wyser climbed Via Corradojillo (5.11, 300m) while Holzhauser, and Tresch climbed Private Universe (5.11d, 550m). The following week three more ascents in the Itivdliap-Pularia Fjord included El Martillo (5.10b, 500m) and Bondola (5.10b, 450m) by the Morel, Lietha, Wyser team and Rascana (5.11a, 450m) by Holzhauser, Lamprecht, and Tresch.

The perfect granite led Morel, Lietha, and Wyser to complete three more first ascents before the end of the trip which were Lucky Mushrooms (5.10d, 600m), Northern Comfort (5.10b, 600m) and Waslala (5.10b, 600m). Caroline Morel was injured during the ascent of Waslala due to rock fall.

Tom Holzhauser following on Serratit (5.12b, 600m). [Photo] Toni Lamprecht

Holzhauser, Lamprecht, and Tresch climbed the longest route as well as the hardest in the Sivinganerup ima Fiord. On the Golden Pillars on August 11, they completed Another Wallhalla (5.10b, 800m). Serratit (5.12b, 600m) offered difficult but excellent climbing finishing with “an incredible 120 meter dream-dihedral and crack climbing from finger to hand to fist and off-width near the summit,” reports Toni Lamprecht.

All the routes were climbed in alpine style one-day pushes. The walls were accessed via boat from base camp which was located on the north side of Quvnerit Island.

Sources: Toni Lamprecht,

Lamprecht, Holzhauser and Tresch after topping out on Serratit (5.12b, 600m). [Photo] Toni Lamprecht