Frendo Spur

Aiguille du Midi

Chamonix

Skyway Monte Bianco

This highly sought after mountaineering line is perhaps the most aesthetic ski line on the North Face of the Midi.

Freeride Skiing Extreme

Distance
1.4 km
Ascent
2 m
Descent
1.3 km
Low Point
2.4 km
High Point
3.7 km
Gradient
56˚
Frendo Spur Map

If you are planning on skiing this, you probably don't need to refer to FATMAP for help. However, the route goes as follows: ski into the North Face as for the Mallory or Eugster. Instead of continuing to traverse, ski down the fall line and then head skier's right. This brings you to a permanent streak of black ice up against the Frendo Rognon. Make one short abeil on a v-thread to cross it or if conditions and skill allows, go for the straightline (if you think this could never be possible, Antoine Montant straightlined it). Ski down the iconic Frendo Arête. From the top of the rock spur there are three options. 1.) Continue down the hanging glacier, traversing back onto the rock spur before the serac cliffs out. Once on the rock spur, climb and/or abseil leftwards until established on the lower snow covered rock slabs. In good conditions you can ski down the remainder without any further abseils. 2.) Make four 30-60 meter abseils down the steep gullies which dissect the central section of the rock spur. As of 2013, there were in-situ anchors there. 3.) Climb back up to the Midi.

Description

From the 1970s through to the late 1990s, it was possible to descend skier's left side of the rock spur after skiing the arête. This was more logical and eliminated a lot of abseiling. However, global warming has drastically thinned out the permanent snow and ice cover on the North Face of the Midi, an area which has been particularly vulnerable to summer heat waves.

Difficulty

Extreme

Extreme skiing terrain above 45 degrees. These routes are reserved for experienced experts.

Extreme Exposure (E4)

4 out of 4

In case of a fall, the skier faces certain death.

Remoteness

4 out of 4

In the high mountains or remote conditions, all individuals must be completely autonomous in every situation.

Best time to visit

May

Features

  • Cliffs
  • Glacier

Equipment required

  • Rope
  • Ice axe
  • Crampons

Similar routes nearby

Guidebooks in this area