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Switzerland - September 2019
Climbing and Alpinism with Ewan in the Valais, Switzerland

 On the first day in Switzerland we did a multi-pitch route straight from Ewan's house. It was graded 6a in the local guide but turned out to be 6b if climbed free. The second day we headed for Dent du Velan so Ewan could teach me some alpinism.  This is Le Grammont from the approach with a cloud inversion over Lac Leman behind  Our wee ridge. You start on the near side of the big rock in the distance and traverse to the other side. It takes about 1.5-2 hours with the walk in being 2.5 hours.  The start of our ridge a bit closer up. The route starts at the left side.  Ewan on the summit  Me on the summit pretending to be a proper alpinist  Looking back to Le Grammont  Abseiling from the summit  On day 3 we headed out for a longer traverse. This time to do a S-N traverse of the Ecandies. The route starts at the col and goes across the lower section of ridge over several pinnacles to finish a bit to the left and below the moon (the obvious wee shady bit).  View back down the valley with the clouds rolling up towards us.  Looking over the other side of the ridge towards the Trient Glacier  Trient Glacier and Aiguille du Tour and others in the pitcture.  Clouds and mountains, it was a pretty stunning day.  One of the pinnacles. I think this is number 4. It's only about 15-20m of climbing then you abseil back down again.  More great views  Ewan on one of the pinnacles  Ewan led much of the first half of the route. His route finding and rope work is somewhat faster and slicker than mine. Later on he let me take over for a bit (once I couldn't get us lost).  Trient Glacier  Fiona leading one of the easier sections  Heh, I might make an aplinist yet. Although the less said about the beached whale approach I used to ascend the crack behind the better.  Direct belays on the rock, I've been entrusted to go first for a bit.  Admiring the views  Trient Glacier again  Abseiling at the end of the ridge  Rather a lot of blaeberries were consumed on the walk out.  Heading for Grand Chavalard, Ewan was leading a walk/scramble with the Swiss Alpine Club so I tagged along.  Grand Chavalard  We're heading up that scree... it looks horrendous but actually has a path the whole way.  Scrambling  Ewan looking out for everyone  It's like the Hilary Step :-)  More scrambling  View back along the ridge  Views from the hill  and again  and again  The descent, on a descent path, albeit steep.  The path goes through the avalanche barriers!  Descent route  The final day way a bit wet so we did a hillwalk above the Emmoson Dam. Nessie and Le Douche Eccossaise in the distance.  Mont Buet in the distance and various routes we did in the summer of 2019.  Lots more blaeberries today