Ascent of Fletschhorn on 1966-07-14

Climber: Frederick Johnson

Others in Party:Josef Biner
guide; George ? (guide)
Joachim Grueger
----Only Party on Mountain
Date:Thursday, July 14, 1966
Ascent Type:Successful Summit Attained
    Motorized Transport to Trailhead:Bus
    Elevation:13100 ft / 3992 m

Ascent Trip Report

The plan was to do the Fletschhorn-Lagginhorn traverse from the Weissmies Hut, followed the next day by an ascent of the Weissmies (4023m). Yesterday I took the train from Zermatt to Stalden and the bus to Saas Grund (1559m),followed by the pleasant hike to the Weissmies Hut (2726m). Josef arrived around 5:00P with his cousin George and a young German client, Joachim Gruger.

This morning the four of us left the hut at 3:45 for the Fletschhorn, following the moraine,a small glacier, then up steep rubble to ridge which connects the Jägigrat with the Fletschhorn. We roped up here, proceeding along the rock ridge to another col, where we put on crampons for the traverse of the final snow ridge to the summit (7:45AM) in a stiff, cold breeze with misty clouds all around. Because of the dubious weather, which could quickly bring storm conditions, we decided, wisely I’m sure, to forego the planned traverse to the Lagginnhorn (4010m). We retraced our steps to the Weissmies Hut, where we lazed around the rest of the day hoping for better weather tomorrow.

On July 15 the weather had not improved, and the outlook was not encouraging for our planned climb of the North Ridge of the Weissmies. So we checked out of the hut and returned to Zermatt, where, by mid-afternoon, the weather had cleared.
Summary Total Data
    Total Elevation Gain:4156 ft / 1266 m
    Route:NW Ridge
    Trailhead:Weissmies Hut  8944 ft / 2726 m
    Route Conditions:
Open Country, Snow on Ground, Exposed Scramble, Snow Climb
    Gear Used:
Ice Axe, Crampons, Rope, Guide, Hut Camp
    Weather:Drizzle, Cold, Breezy, White-out
Poor but not terrible
Ascent Statistics
    Time:4 Minutes

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