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Asia, India, Himachal Pradesh, Miyar Valley, Toro Peak, south Face; Point JAMES, Australian Route, Second Ascent

Toro Peak, south face; Point JAMES, Australian route, second ascent. Elizabeth Fredell and I climbed two routes in the Miyar. On Toro we repeated the first few pitches of the 2008 López- Pfaff Direttissima, as far as the diagonal trough, rating the crux section 5.8+. We then moved slightly right and climbed directly up the slabs above and through a prominent roof that is visible from the valley. In the main this new ground was fun 5.5, but there was a fine, thin-hands crack through the roof at 5.9. We then climbed Pt. JAMES, more or less following the same line on the slabs below the northeast ridge climbed earlier by Australians Natasha Sebire and Gemma Woldendorp [see above]. The obvious way, up a couloir/depression, was snow-covered, so we climbed 200m of broken slabs to the right, at around 5.6, except for a section of 5.8 60m below the summit. The summit block has to be down-climbed. About 15m below the block we discovered an old rappel anchor and started a series of rappels down the route. [Editor’s note: on the first ascent, in 2002, Vlado Linek and Igor Koller scrambled just below the crest of thenortheast ridge from the col at its base. The climbing, both up and down, was straightforward, and no rappels were needed.]

Brandon Lampley, U.S.