Dru N Face…PA,Lesueur and N Couloir combination
Here’s some photos of a great adventure last Thursday and Friday on the North Face of the Drus. Arriving in Servoz on Tuesday evening a quick chat with Uisdean lead to a morning of packing and arriving at a bivi below the N Face Wednesday evening.
Uisdean had recently climbed a number of test pieces in the Mt Blanc range including the Brouillard Hyper Couloir and an amazingly sustained route called Ecaille Epique on the Droites…safe to say he was the rope gun!
Dawn arrived and we’d already left the easier start of the Pierre Allain (the classic N Face of the Drus I climbed many years ago with my mate Martin Chester). We followed the ramps of the Lesueur taking in some pretty chunky climbing until time and energy were running low at dusk a few pitches below the traverse to the Dru Couloir. We dug into a grim snow filled Chimney and rehydrated a little and shivered the night away with our single sleeping bag around our legs…whilst trying to maintain a sitting/slump position.
First thing brought faff and doubt as to where the route continued through the next barrier wall. A fair bit of aid up some minging cracks got us back on track and soon into the icy Dru Couloir. We finished 2 pitches up this and traversed out left on Icy ground to gain the ridge east of the summit and so it’s granite gendarme early afternoon in the warm sun! A fairly rapid abseil of the whole Dru Couloir got us back to base camp then a grim hike back up to the Grands Montets ski station for a sleep and ride down on the service lift first thing.
It’s fair to say I was proper shattered and immensely thankful to have Uisdean provide the momentum and strength for this climb. Good luck with all the big objectives this year!