Asia, India, Western Garhwal, Gangotri, Bhagirathi III-IV col, West Face

Publication Year: 2011.

Gangotri, Bhagirathi III-IV col, west face. A team of six young French alpinists, under the guidance of Frederic Gentet and Christophe Moulin, hoped to repeat classic rock routes on Bhagirathi III. Snowfall of one and a half meters at base camp prevented any attempt on these objectives, but several members of the group, including Thomas Arfi and Simon Duverney, took advantage of a short weather window toward the end of September to climb a 900m ice line on the west face, leading to the 6,100m col between Bhagirathis III and IV. The crux, early on the route, was a 60m pitch of maximum angle 90°. The exit, on soft snow, was difficult, and, as the continuation to the summit of Bhagirathi III was considered too dangerous under the conditions, the team descended from the col. La Fée Clochette (ED) was a tribute to team member Chloé Graftiaux, a young Franco-Belgian who was killed in a fall on the Aiguille Noire de Peuterey that summer.

Lindsay Griffin, Mountain INFO