Andy Turner and Tony Stone rounded off an impressive weeks climbing; with the first winter ascent of Sassenach on Monday 9th March.
This Brown-Whillans classic, sports a steep and punishing start to access a prominent chimney-corner system to finish on the crest of the Carn Dearg Buttress. Much eyed by Nevis devotees the line was an obvious contender for a winter ascent, but favourable conditions are rare making the timing just as important as the technical difficulty alone.
For Andy, three visits to the crag spread over two seasons finally resulted in success; the route being climbed in storm conditions. Sassenach weighs in at IX,9 (with individual technical pitch grades of 7,9,8,7,7,5).
This route was the culmination of a busy week for Andy following ascents of Centurion (VIII,8) the fourth ascent with Tony Stone and Iain Small. Along with the modern classics of Central Grooves (VII,7), Babylon (VII,7), and Darth Vader (VII,7) climbed with visiting international climbers from ‘Team Petzl’.
Also during this week of climbing on Ben Nevis the accomplished speed alpinist Ueli Steck climbed The Secret IX,9, confirming it’s addition to the mountain as a Scottish or arguably an international classic of it’s genre.
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