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North America, Greenland, Italian Expedition in Staunings Alps, East Greenland

Italian Expeditions in Staunings Alps, East Greenland. National Ski- Mountaineering Weeks have been organized by Italian Alpine guides since 1951 to climb all the most rewarding 4000-meter peaks of the Alps in the period from March through June. In 1966 a ski-mountaineering expedition went to the Caucasus. The first Italian Ski-Mountaineering Expedition to Greenland went to the Staunings Alps, 72° North Latitude, from June 15 to July 5, 1967. Participants were Irene Bozzi, Cicci Turati, Augusto Bianchi, Umberto Caprara, Walter De Stavola, Giorgio Di Giorgi, Renato Fabbri, Luigi Mariani, Bruno Uggeri with ski guides Renato Petigax, Giorgio Colli, Mario Senoner and myself as leader. Base Camp was established on June 20 on the right bank of the Bersaerker Glacier at 2600 feet at the base of Piccadilly Peak. After reconnaissance, on June 24 Fabbri, Mariani, Uggeri with Petigax and Senoner climbed Granite Peak (7284 feet) via the rocky northeast ridge and descended the east-southeast ridge, second ascent and first traverse. On the 27th Bozzi, Turati, De Stavola, Di Giorgi with Colli, Petigax and me climbed the north face of Dunnottar Bjerg (8038 feet), also a second ascent, and descended on skis. On the 29th Caprara and Senoner made the first ascent of Panoramic Peak (5905 feet). On June 30 Turati and Bianchi with Colli and me made the second ascent and first ski-mountaineering ascent of Kensington Peak (8333 feet) by its southeast flank and not easy west ridge. Descent was on skis.

The second Italian Ski-Mountaineering Expedition to Greenland also flew to Reykjavik and Mesters Vig and on to Base Camp at 3100 feet on the left side of Bersaerker Glacier where the Dunnottar Glacier enters. Bad weather not only delayed seriously our getting to Base Camp but also prevented a grandiose ski traverse over various glaciers and passes of the region. Though we left Italy on June 18, 1969, we did not get to Base Camp until June 30. The participants were Cicci Turati, Giulio Azzaroli, Armando Colombari, Giorgio Franceschi, GianDomenico Ganassini, Paolo Grunanger, Leonardo Lenti, GianPaolo Nannelli, with ski guides Oliviero Frachey, Franco Garda, Mario Senoner, Luigino Henry and myself as leader. On July 1 Turati, Lenti, Azzaroli, Colombari, Franceschi, Ganassini, Grunanger with Frachey and me climbed the north face of Dunnottar Bjerg. On the 2nd Franceschi and Lenti with Garda made the first ascent of Punta Raffaella (c. 7560 feet) in the Achanau Needle ridge via its west face, while Turati, Colombari, Grunanger, Azzaroli, Ganassini with Frachey, Henry and me ascended previously climbed Elisabethtinde (7218 feet) via the northwest ridge. On July 4 Turati, Franceschi, Lenti with Garda and me made the second and first ski-mountaineering ascent of Islington (7612 feet) by the north face and west ridge; there were notable difficulties in our ascent to 6500 feet on skis, because of the steep slopes and icefalls, but the delicate ski descent gave us great satisfaction. That same day Azzaroli, Ganassini, Grunanger with Frachey and Henry climbed Kensington, an ascent repeated on the 8th by Colombari, Franceschi, Lenti with Garda and me. Also on the 8th Azzaroli, Ganassini, Grunanger with Frachey, Senoner and Henry climbed Beaumaris Fjeld (6398 feet) by the south face and west ridge. (Peaks may be located on Imperial College East Greenland Expedition map, 1963.) We returned to Mesters Vig on July 11 and Italy on the 13th. We are proud of our ski-mountaineering ascents in the Staunings Alps. While other expeditions have used skis, primarily to cross flat glaciers and approach the base of climbs, we used them on imposing slopes as a part of the actual ascent. The Staunings Alps are very well suited to ski-mountaineering.

Toni Gobbi, Club Alpino Italiano