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Christoph Schranz on the approach to the Kolosseum wall of Hohe Mund in the Tyrolean Alps. [Photo] Johannes Mair / Alpsolut Pictures

Christoph Schranz establishes a 300-meter 8c (5.14b), ground up, in the Tyrolean Alps

On May 8, Christoph Schranz freed Ocha-Schau-Schuich (“Fear of Heights,” in his Tyrolean dialect). It took him 20 days of work spread out over three years to establish the 300-meter, seven-pitch route. He explored the route ground up, as a rope solo, starting in 2018 and then began efforts to free the line starting in 2020, investing 10 attempts with support from partners before succeeding on his 11th attempt this past May. Ocha-Schau-Schuich is protected with a mixture of widely spaced bolts and natural protection, with difficulties up to 8c (5.14b).

The Brenva Spur at night, Mont Blanc. [Photo] Tim Oliver

Running Waters

During the battles of World War I, British alpinist T. Graham Brown had vivid, recurring dreams of an alpine wall he’d first imagined after reading a route description in a climbing novel and trying to locate it on a map. Years later, Brown completed his famous routes on the real Brenva Face of Mont Blanc only to find, as he wrote in his memoir, that the vertical landscape of his fantasies still haunted him: “The dream and its country persist.” In this Sharp End story from Alpinist 75–which is now on newsstands and in our online store–Editor-in-Chief Katie Ives explores the topographies of inner mountains.

Barbed wire and mountains in Afghanistan: Koh-e-Omah (5766m), left, and Koh-e-Hawar (6266m). [Photo] Matt Traver

Women, girls involved with Ascend program in Afghanistan are threatened by Taliban rule

The members, graduates and students of the Ascend program in Afghanistan need help. The nonprofit has offered leadership training for young Afghan women through mountaineering courses, and now that Taliban forces have seized control over much of the country, including the nation’s capital city of Kabul, people who do not adhere to the Taliban’s strict laws–such as organizations like Ascend that empower women–may now be in mortal danger. This article contains links for people who wish to help.

Sunset from below Mt. Sill, after Vitaliy Musiyenko stopped early because of 30+ mph winds (Miwok, Mono/Monache, Shoshone and Paiute land). [Photo] Vitaliy Musiyenko

Vitaliy Musiyenko completes 32-mile Goliath Traverse in High Sierra

From August 2 to 10, Vitaliy Musiyenko made the first traverse of Goliath–a linkup of gargantuan proportions along the Sierra Crest, in California’s Sierra Nevada Range. Over the course of eight days Musiyenko covered approximately 32 miles of mostly technical terrain, 80,000 feet of elevation gain, and 60 summits above 13,000 feet, including eight Fourteeners. It may be the longest ridge traverse in the Western Hemisphere.

Half Dome (Tisayac), Yosemite National Park, California, Miwok, Ahwahneechee, Paiute and Mono lands. [Photo] David Iliff. License: CC BY-SA 3.0, Wikimedia

The Climbing Life | Alpinist 75

Alpinist 75 will be available on newsstands soon. In the meantime, we’re offering a preview of The Climbing Life section, with a story by Douglas Brockmeyer about a 1970s magazine photo that inspired him to become a climber (and thus changed the course of his existence), poems by Katherine Indermaur about the fourth-century pilgrim Egeria and her ascent of Mt. Sinai, and fiction by Erin Connery that explores some of the many ways people think about high cliffs and walls.

Nina Williams--who is sponsored by Gnarly Nutrition--climbs in the background of the author's BCAA supplement at Rifle Mountain Park, Colorado. [Photo] Derek Franz

Gnarly Nutrition BCAAs: A dietary supplement geared especially for vegans, alpinists and older athletes

Mountain Standards Gear Review: Digital Editor Derek Franz has been using the Gnarly Nutrition Pre and BCAA (branched chain amino acid) dietary supplements for the past year. Though unable to definitively say how much of a difference, if any, the supplements have made for his fitness, he writes: “What I do know, is that my fitness has been on an upward roll lately, and Gnarly has been one of many ingredients along the way, so I can’t discount it.” As with most any dietary supplement, Franz notes, there can be serious side effects if they aren’t used properly. Four stars.

Hiking out to Wonder Lake after reaching both summits of Denali (20,310') via the Cassin Ridge and skiing down the Northwest Buttress to the end of the Peters Glacier. [Photo] Mike Gardner collection

A season of spontaneous commitment in the Alaska Range

Between late April and the end of May, Mike Gardner and Sam Hennessey added a new line on Denali’s Isis Face that they dubbed Anubis (Alaska Grade 6: AI5 M6, 6,900′); ascended the classic Bibler-Klewin on the North Buttress of Begguya (Mt. Hunter); and then finished by climbing Denali’s Cassin Ridge in deep snow with their friend Adam Fabrikant, reaching both summits of the mountain before skiing and walking a long way back to the nearest road This report is Gardner’s summary of their time in the range.

Vasu Sojitra. [Photo] Jason Thompson

Local Hero: Vasu Sojitra

In this Local Hero story from Alpinist 74–which is now available on newsstands and in our online store–Dani Reyes-Acosta celebrates the community-building work and mountain adventures of ice climber and backcountry skier Vasu Sojitra, co-founder of the Inclusive Outdoors Project.

The line of Cerveza, Pan y Acido (ED: 90 degrees, 700m) on the south face of Concha de Caracol (5640m) with the location of the open bivy marked near the top. [Photo] Courtesy of Anna Pfaff

US-Colombian trio complete a new route on Peru’s Concha de Caracol (5640m)

On July 13 and 14, Andres Marin, Anna Pfaff and Alex Torres completed a new route on Concha de Caracol (5640m) in Peru’s Cordillera Vilcanota. Cerveza, Pan y Acido (ED: 90°, 700m), which translates as “beer, bread and acid,” is the second route on the mountain’s south face. The climbers weathered an open bivy below the summit at 5500 meters and Marin and Pfaff suffered some frostbite on their feet, from which they are currently recovering.

Nejc Zaplotnik in Makalu Base Camp, October 1975. [Photo] Viki Groselj

Nejc Zaplotnik, Mountain Poet

As one of the first ascensionists of the West Ridge Direct of Chomolungma (Everest), Slovenian alpinist Nejc Zaplotnik (1952-1983) was among the great climbers of the twentieth century. To many, however, he is best known for his lyrical memoir, The Way (“Pot” in Slovenian), which gave voice to the dreams of his generation and beyond. In this feature story from Alpinist 74, mountaineering historian Bernadette McDonald recounts some of the key moments and mysteries of his vibrant life and shares translated passages of his book that still reverberate today.