Schweizerland, Asta Nunaat. The drill finally hums. “On belay,’’comes the shout from above. Our rain-soaked drill, chilled by the polar wind, has reached operating temperature again. However, by the time we reach the next hanging stance, the drill has refrozen. A fall at this point would have deadly consequences. A glance over the gaping emptiness at the glacier below, the fields of rubble that lead down to the fjord, and the fjord itself, covered in icebergs, is sobering. Our only means of transport back to civilization is by small, shaky fishing boat, and sometimes these cannot penetrate the fjord due to ice. In any case we are unable to make radio contact with them from here, and it would take days on foot to reach the nearest Inuit village.
Andi Fichtner, Christoph Hainz, and I flew to Kulusuk with Iceland Air and traveled four hours by boat to the village of Tinitequilaq. From there it took seven hours up an unnamed glacier to reach base camp. We had information from a friend in South Tyrol, who had married a local girl. From mid-July to mid-August we climbed a previously unnamed rock peak. Despite considerable bad weather with heavy rain, we completed a fine crack system up the compact west face. We have named the mountain Asta Nunaat and called our route Tartaruga (18 pitches, 7b A2).
Roger Schäli, Switzerland