I always had troubles trying to understand why ice climbing is so tempting. Bunch of layers, thick mittens and metal tools make this activity look so dissuasive compared to t-shirtless bare hand climbing on a sunny rock of Spaniards. Also, getting cold, wet and damn scared contribute to all this irrationality.
Anyway, this year I’ve decided to join IceCamp organized by some Lithuanian friends. The camp took place in Bernese Alps nearby one of the famous Swiss ice climbing spots called Kandersteg. Weather forecast didn’t look promising. High temps meant that some waterfalls might not be in good conditions which was true, but only for the beginning.
During the first two days we earned some mileage on easier stuff. Later, together with Aras and Vytas we managed to tag classical line Arbonium. The climb was rather enjoyable, especially the very first pitch which involved some drytooling on a steep ice. Later on, me and Aras decided to take rest day after three days of climbing. To help our bodies recover we did some sledding. Aras managed to document our experience quite accurately. Next day, I tried to climb Namenlos, but unfortunately the upper part was not in conditions. Instead of climbing direct line, I took a variation to the left which ended up in memorable experience on thin ice in a couloir to the left. Last day of the camp brought us two local heroes with whom I climbed a really nice line in Oschinenwald called Pingu.
At the time of writing, the camp is over and I am back in Zurich which is getting ready for spring. Hope, my psyche will stay high not only for climbing, but also for writing a thesis that I will start soon. Yey!