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~ Thursday 18th June 2015

2 days in the Oberland with a huge team from GORETEX Europe. As part of their ongoing relationship with GORE, the BMG provided guides for a big, international group of competition winners hoping to make the ascent of the Balmhorn. I say "hoping" because the weather was looking doubtful, and the Balmhorn is a 1700m ascent from the hut - a tough challenge for people who'd flown in yesterday from all over the world!

The Oberland seen fro the Balmhorn.

The pre-dawn saw us leave the hut in damp, cloudy conditions. Not ideal. Reaching the glacier a couple of hours later after a long and confusing ascent through moraine, and we were still in the clouds. Luckily, as we joined the summit ridge at 3000m, we climbed above the clouds into a stunning inversion! Good snow conditions, stunning views, and a fine summit were a well-earned reward!

Emerging into the sun on the start of the summit ridge

Resting before the final part of the ridge

Nearing the top, with fine views to the South

The last 15 minutes of a long ascent!

Teams above a sea of clouds