We arrived in Chamonix to find Jonny Copp and Micah Dash two-thirds of the way up an attempted new route on the Dru getting thrashed by a storm. Seems like every place we go with these guys there is heavy weather, epic suffering and gallows humor (see the previous post, “Shut Down.”) Needless to say, it is hard to film. But that’s the deal with fast and light, first ascent, on-sight alpine climbing, which Jonny and Micah have refined to a cutting edge and slightly demented art form.
The not-so-petit Dru in storm (photo: Jonny Copp)
In climbed-out Chamonix, where new routes are hard to come by, a window of opportunity opened up when the west face of the Petit Dru collapsed twice over the last eight years (see the massive white patch in the photo), erasing the existing routes and leaving a brand new face for two enterprising American climbers like Jonny and Micah.
They were forced to descend in the storm, nearly got crushed by a collapsing bergshrund, and after a couple days partying in Cham, they are planning to go back up there. Meanwhile we will be shooting some cool footage on the Aguilles, and of course, joining in on the fete.