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North America, Greenland, Ingolffjeld, Attempt on South Face

Ingolffjeld, Attempt on South Face. The weather was unusually poor, making access to the fjord a problem because of excessive ice. Leader of this British-Danish group was Dolfi Rotovnik. The climbers involved were Bill Tweedale and I, British, and Niels Ole Coops Olsen, Kaj Olesen, and Peter Christensen, Danes. We spent two weeks on the south face of Ingolffjeld mostly in bad conditions with frequent snowstorms of two to three days’ duration. Technically we met no insurmountable obstacles. The 1000-foot entry chimneys were UIAA grade IV to the first bivouac. Above was some grade VI and we moved left into the central couloir with a pendulum. All this zone from the bivouac to the central pillar (1000 feet) was exposed to rockfall and avalanches. After excessive snowfalls, we retreated to attempt the right pillar. The climbing was at most grade V up to our second bivouac 3000 feet up. Once again we were forced to stop by heavy snow which coated the whole face in snow and ice. With only a week left we abandoned the attempt for lesser summits. With better weather a splendid route could be made up the central pillar and a less direct, but probably harder one on the right one. The other faces of the mountain are equally impressive and hold even more snow. Tweedale and I climbed Angdan Tower (7300 feet), a southwest outlier of Ingolffjeld via the 4500-foot-high snow and ice southeast couloir and the east ridge for the last 500 feet.

Anthony Howard, Alpine Climbing Group