Mont Blanc Range, Italy

Discovering a hidden pearl on Grandes Jorasses

A few impressions from the first ascent of the Diamond Ridge on Grandes Jorasses through the tremendous Tronchey Wall – the largest wall in the Mont Blanc Range.


Let’s see where it is:

First ascent:

July 28th – 30th, 2016, together with Simon Richardson (Scotland)

Starting point:

Pra Sec/Val Ferret, Italy

GPS coordinates of the approach:

N 45° 50' 51", E 7° 0' 42", Height: 1635 m Google Maps)


2500 m climbing distance, 1600 m vertical elevation (1200 m Diamond Ridge + 400 m Tronchey Ridge to the summit of Pointe Walker/Grandes Jorasses, 4208 m).


French 5c/A0, TD


Starting at Pra Sec for an approach of 965 vertical meters/3,5 h. Varied climbing on the south spur of Punta Grassi, crossing under the west branch of the Tronchey Glacier to the Diamond Ridge. Climbing the Diamond Ridge on exceptionally good and solid granite with many natural structures and holds. Combined climbing at the last 400 vertical meters of the Tronchey Ridge to the summit.

Climbing gear:

50 m double rope, 1 set of C4-Camalots up to #3, small and medium Stoppers are important. Mobile protection is quite possible with a few exceptions.


The 1400 meter high Tronchey Wall draws on the Pra Sec Glacier to the summit of Pointe Walker and is the highest wall in the entire Mont Blanc Range. The bastion is one of the wildest and least climbed walls in the Alps.

» Topo with route description

» Reports about this first ascent

» Climbing guidebook with additional information

» Annuals with reports about this route

» Press reports about this first ascent

Photo credit:

Image #12: “Grandes Jorasses” by Alfred Walter Williams (1823 – 1905), The Alpine Club Collection, London