After two ascents in the North Faces of Grande Rocheuse and Aiguille Carrée (see previous posts), Anna and I enjoyed a sunny day on the Cosmiques Ridge (Arête des Cosmiques) of Aiguille du Midi. On this first day of 2011, we were alone on the route, enjoying the perfect weather and condition on the route.
Grade: AD / II / 60° max / 4a
First ascent: G. Finch, M. Finch on August 2nd 1911.
Anna in the Cosmiques ridge. Grandes Jorasses and Dent du Geant behind (© P. Gatta)
Cosmiques ridge in the foreground, Mont Blanc du Tacul behind (© A. Gatta)
Access: take the cable car of Aiguille du Midi. Descent along the normal route, pass under the South Face of Aiguille du Midi to the Abri Simond (hut). The Cosmiques Ridge starts right above the hut.
Skiers descending toward the Vallee Blanche (© A. Gatta)
Philippe in the Cosmiques ridge. Cosmique hut behind (© A. Gatta)
Cosmiques ridge: climb the snow slopes and mixed terrain above the Abri Simond up to the top of the Cosmiques Spur. Avoid several Gendarmes through the right side (South). On top of the Spur there are two rappels (2 good anchors); the first one is very short (<10m), the second one is ~20 meters high. Traverse on the South side 2 big towers to reach the base of a small wall. Climb the short crack (4a, 1 piton) to reach the anchor above (1 piton + 1 bolt) and continue up to a large shelf. Cross to the North Face and climb a Chimney up to the top of the ridge. Climb the ladder leading to the cable car.
Philippe rapping down in the Cosmiques Ridge (© A. Gatta)
Anna in the crux of Cosmiques ridge (© P. Gatta)