Posted on: 2016-05-27 22:30:54 by davidof

A legend falls

The Linceul, the Shroud, it is on every climbers bucket list but amongst skiers it is a myth. Skied by Jérome Ruby on snowboard and Sam Baugey on skis in 1995 it has never been repeated. The suspended snow field varies between 50 and 60 degrees, the entry goulottes around 80 degree. There are no photos of the first decent, hence the myth, but climbers on the route a day after witnessed the tracks.

With the best skiing conditions in the high European Alps for a decade, bizarrely perhaps the consequence of global warming (warmer but more precipitation) a number of routes have been repeated this season, including the Linceul but in generation Go-Pro we have the pictures to admire the adventure. In the words of Yann Borgnet

"An extraordinary day, niggled by doubts and uncertainties and finally crowned with a superbe descent. Even if the ski-able section is not very long and even if the approach is unending for 40 turns we were never the less on THE great climber's north face. The Shroud is a unique adventure, beyond a ski descent. Apart from the extremely steep and vertiginous slope there is the history, the location, the fact it is a "big route" with 10 pitches on ice slopes that tire you both mentally and physically. It is for all these reason's we rate it 5.5. In a word, a slope to ski"

Talking of history, the slope was only opened by climbers in 1968 - none other than René Desmaison and Robert Flematti at the height of their powers.

And to complement this descent guides' Luca Rolli and Francesco Civra Dano have skied the Major Route down the East Face of Mont Blanc. This is the the first repeat of Stefano de Benedetti descent on the 7 September 1979. Nearly 40 years.