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~ Tuesday 5th August 2014

The Tsalion west ridge is definitely one of the best rock routes in the valley, if not the Valais, with good rock, lots of good climbing and great positions. It is graded "AD" but beware! Local guides have recently added some bolts but it's worth taking a few friends and wires (and knowing how to use them!) The crux pitches involve committing and serious grade IV climbing, especially when wet.

Although it's a shame to not stay at the lovely Tsa hut, if you only have a day spare it's climbable from the valley with an early start - and a fit team - and so we found ourselves leaving Evolene at 5.30am. It's a stiff 2 hours to the foot of the route and we were dismayed to find it running water - un-forecast overnight rain and snow-covered ledges had left some very "damp" rock.

The first few pitches are tricky, especially when wet, but we soon managed to commit ourselves to a position where up seemed easier than down...

There are 2 bolts on this pitch (keen blog readers may remember...) but today 2 wasn't quite enough. This is a committing pitch

Aspirant guide Kenny Grant pulls onto the summit.