Gross Chärpf (2794m), attempt, returned from ~2605m

Ok, I'm officially pissed at the weather now. We had rain pretty much every single day of July. Today was no different. The trail is rated T5 (challenging alpine level hike) with the last leg on the ridge having no trail at all and requiring some easy climbing. It turned out difficult for all the wrong reasons:

  • I was sloshing through deep mud created by cows using the soaked trail
  • visibility was next to nil so finding trail markers turned out to be quite difficult
  • ever tried walking on dripping wet grass on a steep incline?
  • patches of heavy wet snow hid even more of the trail and presented another slippery slope
  • apparently the mountain is famously dangerous for its rock falls. I can confirm this. Pieces of rock would come off the wall regularly

Anyway. I'm adventurous, not suicidal. Soaked to the bone with a feeling as if I was walking in buckets of water instead of hiking boots I decided to turn around after reaching the summit ridge and climbing parts. Incredibly frustrating.

Near the top it was windy with temperatures just above freezing. I'm glad I did bring my gloves this time ;-) ~1550m elevation gain, ~1700m descent, ~20km in 8.5 hours. At least the Swiss public transportation system didn't let me down. 5 minutes after I reached the road a bus picked me up and I was on my way home.

Sooo close!

All pictures:

2011-07-30 Gross Chärpf

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