Echo Wall First Ascent

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Dave MacLeod has led his Echo Wall Project.

The route first gets mentioned on Dave's blog back in 2006, and it's been a long road to get here. Progress gained momentum after Dave and Clare moved from Dumbarton up north to sunny Fort William, and this summer saw Dave getting really stuck into the route. Preparations have included soloing Darwin Dixit 8c and plenty of hard Glen Nevis bouldering. Even Lingering snow wasn't allowed to be an obstacle, Dave spent 4 days back in May digging out snow at the top of the route to stop it causing seepage as it melted.

Route Description

Echo Wall **** 100m Grade: Harder than Rhapsody (or anything else I’ve been on)
Dave MacLeod. July 28th 2008
Ben Nevis, east aspect of Tower Ridge, about 1100m alt.
A spectacular route taking the huge sharp arête of Echo Wall, well seen from Tower Ridge or when ascending Observatory Gully. Poorly protected in general with groundfall potential at 20 metres near the end of the crux section.

  • 1. 30m Climb easy slabs to a belay at the foot of the grossly overhanging arête of the buttress.
  • 2. 70m Pull into an overhung groove and exit this with immediate difficulty. A hard and poorly protected boulder problem leads to the roof and an upside down rest. (wires, poor camalot 6). Pull leftwards over the roof with desperate climbing up the wall just right of the arête to a shakeout (RP & Skyhook in suspect rock). Move left to the arête and make very serious moves up this to a good spike and reasonable gear. Continue with more ease up the arête (runout) to a small ledge (drop your left hand rope to relieve drag). Continue up steep flakes in a great position to gain easy ground and a short solo to reach Tower Ridge.

Read More

You can read more on Dave's blog and on wife (and camera woman) Claire's blog

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