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Piolets d’Or Releases Long List of Significant Climbs from 2018

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The Piolets d’Or have released the long list of 58 notable ascents from the calendar year of 2018, from which will be culled a select few to receive the climbing world’s biggest honor later this September.

Rock and Ice reported on many of the climbs on this list, from David Lama’s solo first ascent of Lunag Ri to Romeo Popa, Zsolt Toroko and Teofil Vlad’s new line on Pumori; from the two separate attempts on Latok I—one by Sergey Glazunov and and Alexander Gukov, the other by Ales Cesen, Luka Strazar and Tom Livingstone—-to Graham Zimmerman and Chris Wright’s new line on the north face of Mt. MacDonald. 

Perusing this long list inspires both admiration—for the vision and dedication these climbers mustered to bring their ascents to life—but also sorrow: more than a few of the individuals on this list—David Lama, Jess Roskelley, Hansjorg Auer, Sergey Glazunov, Ryan Johnson, Marc-André Leclerc, Tomek Mackiewicz—died in the mountains, whether on the climbs they are recognized for here or on a subsequent adventure.

The Piolet d’Ors website explains: “The following is a representative list of significant, innovative ascents in most mountain regions of the World, climbed during 2018, in alpine style, and without using drilled equipment. This is not a list of nominated ascents for the Piolets d’Or and should not be confused with such. Grades are those quoted by the first ascensionists and remain unconfirmed. The number of bivouacs noted is for the ascent only.”

The list was put together by Lindsay Griffin, senior editor of the American Alpine Journal; Dougald MacDonald, editor in chief of the American Alpine Journal; and Rodolphe Popier, of the Himalayan Database.

The Piolets d’Or will be awarded at the Ladek Mountain Festival in Poland, to be held September 19 to 22, 2019.

See the full list of significant climbs below.


Kishtwar Himalaya, Cerro Kishtwar (6,173m)

Genki Narumi – Yusuki Sato – Hiroki Yamamoto (Japan)

Northeast face, Aal Izz Well, 1,500m, VI WI5 M6. One bivouac (September).

Kinnaur, Baspa Valley, Peak (6,050m)

Hansjorg Auer – Max Berger – Much Mayr – Guido Unterwurzacher (Austria)

First ascent via southeast face, 1,000m on face. Two bivouacs above base camp at 3,200m (October).

Gangotri, Janhukot (6,805m)

Malcolm Bass – Guy Buckingham – Paul Figg (UK)

First ascent via southwest buttress and upper south-southwest ridge, 1,700m, ED1, Scottish IV. Three bivouacs (June).

Garhwal, Changabang (6,864m)

Leo Billon – Sébastien Moatti – Sébastien Ratel (France)

North face (not to summit), 1996 to 1997 British link, 1,200m (40 pitches), AI5 M6. Two bivouacs (May).


Kachqiant (6,015m)

Danny Schoch – Bas Visscher (the Netherlands)

First ascent via northeast ridge, 1,000m, TD-, 60-70°. One bivouac (June/July).

Nanga Parbat (8,125m)

Tomasz Mackiewicz (Poland) – Elisabeth Revol (France)

First complete ascent of the northwest (Diamir) face (some new ground), ca 4,000m from base camp. Five bivouacs (January). Mackiewicz died on the descent.

Luphgar Sar West (7,157m)

Hansjörg Auer (Austria)

West face, ca 1,000m, M4 55°. Solo, in a day (July).

Latok I (7,145m)

Ales Cesen – Luka Strazar (Slovenia) – Tom Livingstone (UK)

North ridge/face and south face, 2,400m ED+. Six bivouacs (August).

Latok I (7,145m)

Sergey Glazunov – Alexander Gukov (Russia)

North ridge (not to summit, high point on meeting summit ridge), 2,300m. 10 bivouacs (July).

Suma Brakk (6,166m)

Fabian Buhl – Alexander Huber (Germany)

South ridge, The Big Easy, 1,100m but 2,200m (56 pitches) of climbing, 5.10+ R A1 M6. Two bivouacs on final ascent, some rope fixed (August).

Hainabrakk East Tower (5,650m)

Pete Fasoldt – Jonathan Schaffer (USA)

Southeast face, Heinous Broccoli Robbery, 1,100m, 5.11+ A1. Two bivouacs (summer).

Gasherbrum II (8,034m)

Felix Berg (Germany) – Adam Bielecki (Poland)

Southwest ridge and southwest face (partial new route), ca 700m from last camp on normal route. In a day (July).

Changi II (6,250m)

Nelson Neirinck (Belgium) – Jess Roskelley – Kurt Ross (USA)

South face and west ridge, Hard Tellin’ not Knowin’, M6 AI4. One bivouac above high camp (August). Other routes in Lachit Valley.


Himjung (7,092m)

Vitus Auer – Sebastien Fuchs – Stefan Larcher (Austria)

West ridge and traverse of mountain, ca 2,200m from base camp, 55° UIAA III. One bivouac (October/November).

Langdung (6,386m)

Jesus Ibarz – Edu Recio – Pablo Ruiz (Spain)

Southeast ridge, Bihana, 700m (but 1,500m of climbing), 6c+. In a day after fixing a small amount of rope (October).

Drangnag Ri (6,757m)

Iñaki Arakistain – Alberto Fernández – Joseba Larrañaga -Mikel Zabalza (Spain)

Southwest ridge, Bizipenak, 1,500m, ED-, AI5 UIAA V. Two bivouacs (October).

Lunag Ri (6,895m)

David Lama (Austria)

First ascent via west ridge, 90°. Solo, two bivouacs (October).

Kyajo Ri (6,151m)

Zdenek Hak – Marek Holecek (Czech Republic)

West face, north ridge, and northeast face, Lapse of Reason, 1,200m, ED+, M6 WI4+ UIAA III+. One bivouac on route (May).

Pumori (7,161m)

Romeo Popa – Zsolt Torok – Teofil Vlad (Romania)

Southeast face, Le Voyage du Petit Prince, ca 1,400m, ED, M6 AI4 R. Five bivouacs (October), descent southwest ridge and west face.

Sharphu II (6,328m)

Spencer Gray – Aivaras Sajus (USA)

First ascent via east face, Samsara, 730m, ED2 AI5 M6. Two bivouacs (October), traversed the mountain.


Daxue Shan, Minya Konka (7,556m)

Li Zongli – Xiao Hai (China)

North spur and northeast ridge, 2,800m alpine style from base camp. Three bivouacs (October).


Western Kokshaal-too, Kyzyl Asker (5,842m)

Evgeny Murin – Ilya Penyaev (Russia)

Southeast face, ca 1,150m (31 pitches), 6B/ED2 7a+ A2 M5. Seven bivouacs (July).

Djangart Range, Pik Alexander (5,290m)

Line van den Berg – Wout Martens (Netherlands)

North face, Dutch Direct, 800m, TD+, 90°. Descended new route on south side of mountain. Other routes. One bivouac, (September).


Shkhara (5,203m)

Archil Badriashvili – Giorgi Tepnadze (Georgia)

New route and first winter ascent of south face, 2,500m (60+ pitches), ED2 M5 WI5 75-80°. Seven bivouacs (February).


Korzhenevskaya (7,105m)

Roman Abildaev – Alexey Usatykh (both Russian) – Semen Dvornichenko – Sergey Seliverstov (both Kyrgyzstan)

South face, Ol’cha, ca 2,000m, 60-80°. Five bivouacs (January).



Cabinet Mountains, A Peak (2,632m)

Scott Coldiron – Jess Roskelley (USA)

Central Couloir, 800m, M7 AI5, and other routes. One bivouac (November).


Revelation Mountains, Mt Jezebel northeast summit (2,880m)

Uisdean Hawthorn – Tom Livingstone (UK)

East face, Fun or Fear, 1,200m, M6+ AI6 R 90°. One bivouac (April).

Revelation Mountains, Hydra Peak (2,380m)

Thomas Auvaro – Jeremy Fino – Antoine Rolle (France)

Northeast face, Fa Pa Caou Per Aqui, 600m, ED, M8. In a day (April), and other routes.

West Kahiltna Peak (3,912m)

Nik Mirhashemi – Kurt Ross (USA)

Southwest face, Ride the Bullet, 1,200m, AI5+ R M6+ C1. One bivouac (April).

Mendenhall Tower, Main tower (2,106m)

Marc-André Leclerc (Canada) – Ryan Johnson (USA)

North face, 750m. One bivouac (March), both climbers died on the descent.

Devil’s Paw (2,616m)

Brette Harrington – Gabe Hayden (USA)

West face, Shaa Teix’i, 1,300m, 5.11a. In a day (September).


Selkirk Mountains, Mt MacDonald (2,883m)

Chris Wright – Graham Zimmerman (USA)

North face, The Indirect American, 1,000m, WI4+ M7. Two bivouacs (November).

Rockies, Mt Temple (3,547m)

Alik Berg (Canada)

East-northeast face, The Milkwater, 1,250m, V WI4 M4. Solo, in a day (December).

Rockies, Mt Slesse (2,439m)

Marc-André Leclerc(Canada) – Tom Livingstone (UK)

East face, Navigator Wall, first winter ascent, 700m, ED1 M7+ R (Scottish VIII/IX). In a day (January)

Rockies, Mt Blane (2,993m)

Brette Harrington (USA) – Rose Pearson (NZ)

West face, Life Compass (a winter-conditions repeat of the 1957 Kahl-Schotten summer route), 980m, TD+, 5.10a, M4+ 80°. In a day (April).



Torres del Paine, Cerro Almirante Nieto (2,440m)

Felipe Bishara – Christian Barra Munoz (Chile)

South-southeast face, Linea de Libertad, ca 700m, 75-90° ice, unstable snow. In a day (August).

Southern Patagonia, Cerro Riso Patron Sur (2,350m)

Matteo della Bordella (Italy) – Silvan Schupbach (Switzerland)

First ascent, southwest face, King Kong, 900m, M7+ 90°. In a day (February).

Cerro San Lorenzo, south pillar (El Faro, 3,150m)

Martin Elias (Spain) – Francois Poncet – Jerome Sullivan (both France)

La Milagrosa, 1,200m, 6a M7 A3. One bivouac (October).

Northern Patagonia, Punta Pantagruel (2,410m)

Felipe Cancino (Chile) – Max Fisher (Canada) – Willy Oppenheim (USA)

First ascent via east face, Brisa Suave, 350m, M6 C1 70°. In a day (September). In a day (February).


Sajama (6,542m)

Robert Rauch (Bolivia/Germany)

Solo, in a day (August).

Mururata (5,871m)

Ethan Berman – Brian Houle (USA)

Southwest face, Power to the Process, 750m, WI5 M5. In a day (July).


Cordillera Vilcanota, Campa II (ca 5,650m)

Luis Crispin – Macario Crispin (Peru) – Duncan McDaniel (USA)

West face, 600m, AI3 M4 85°. In a day (August).

Cordillera Huayhuash, Jurau A (5,640m)

Jose Maria Andres – Samuel Gomez (Spain)

Northeast face, Chanchos y Chacras, not to summit, 1,000m, 6c M4+ 65°. In a day (September). Two bivouacs (June).

Cordillera Blanca, Nevado Huantsan (6,395m)

Devin Corboy (USA) – Macario Crispin (Peru) – Nathan Heald (USA) – Arttu Pylkkanen (Finland) – Javier Reyes (Chile) – Johannes Suikkanen (Finland)

South ridge – west summit to main summit, Apus Circus, 1,200m, ED, WI4 M5. One bivouac on final push (July). Several ropes placed on initial section.



Darran Mountains, Mt Suter (2,094m)

Ben Dare (NZ)

South face, Elysium, 750m, AI5. Solo, in a day (July).

Southern Alps, Mt Percy Smith (2,465m)

Ben Dare (NZ)

Southwest face, The Promise, 700m, WI4 M5+ A0. Solo, in a day (October).

Southern Alps, Mt Cook (3,764m)

Caleb Jennings – Kim Ladiges (NZ)

South (Sheila) face, Pilgrim, 900m, WI5 M6. In a day (September).

Southern Alps, Mt Cook (3,764m)

Rose Pearson-Sam Waetford (NZ)

South (Sheila) face, Ministry of Silly Walks, 800m, M4 WI4. In a day (September).


Pirrit Hills, Mount Tidd (2,244m)

Antoine Bletton – Sébastien Moatti (France)

North face, Coming in from the Cold, 800m, TD, WI4 M4. In a day (January), and other routes by the GMHM expedition.




Senja, Breitinden (1,001m)

Greg Boswell (UK) – Jeff Mercier (France)

North face, 600m, ED; Finnkona, northwest face, 400m, M8 WI5+. Seven hard routes in eight days (February).

Lofoten, Stortinden (866m)

Sami Modenius (Finland) – Chris Wright (USA)

North face, Way Out West, 800m, M7 A0 95°. One day (February).

Gudvangen Region, The Kraken

Phillipe Batoux – Aymeric Clouet – Michel Coranotte (France)

800m, VI/6+ M6. One day (February).


Mont Blanc (4,808m), Miage (northwest) face

Simon Richardson (UK) – Micha Rinn (Germany)

Perfect Storm, 700m, ED1, 6a+. One bivouac on pillar (August), traversed mountain.

Grandes Jorasses (4,208m), east face

Max Bonniot – Pierre Labbre – Manu Romain (France)

Groucho Marx FFA, 700m, ED+, 7b. In a day (June).

Gross Grunhorn (4,044m)

Dani Arnold – Stephen Ruoss (Switzerland)

Northeast face, Exile on Main Street, 600m, M7 6b+ bolted belays. In a day (May).

Cima Brenta, east face (3,150m)

Alessandro Beber – Matteo Faletti (Italy)

CRAM, 550m, 14 pitches, AI5 M6 90°. One bivouac (December).

Watzmann (2,713m)

Luka Lindic (Slovenia) – Ines Papert (Germany)

First winter east to west traverse, ca 3,450m of ascent, M5 80°. In a day – car to car (January).

Sagwand (3,227m)

David Lama – Peter Muhlburger (Austria)

Sagzahn Verschneidung, 800m, M6 A2. In a day (February).


Other notable ascents during 2018 that do not quite fit the strict criteria for the Piolet d’Or

South America, South Avellano Tower (ca 1,900m)

John Crook – John McCune – Will Sim – Paul Swail (UK)

East face, 900m, E5 6a. One day in January, but after two days spent fixing rope to half height.

Greenland, Fox Jaw Cirque, Molar

Robert Jasper (Germany)

Southwest face – Stonecircle, 450m (12 pitches plus scrambling), 7c, , solo, with a little fixed rope and 30 bolts.

Dolomites, Cima Scotoni (2,874m)

Simon Gietl (Italy)

Can you hear me, 550m, 27 pitches, VIII+ A2. Rope solo, completed in June. No bolts but a total of eight days over two years.

Dolomites, Cima Scotoni (2,874m)

Nicola Tondini, with Lorenzo d’Addario (Italy)

Southwest face, Non Abbiate paura di Sognare, 24 pitches, bolts used only on nine belays, first single push ascent, 8b, 7b+ obl. one bivouac (September).

Pakistan, Kiris Peak (5,428m)

Massimo Faletti – Maurizio Giordani (Italy)

Northeast face, Waterworld, 600m (1,250m of climbing; 29 pitches), UIAA VIII A2 M3 65°. With fixed ropes on lower wall and a little bolting.

Pakistan, Pathan Peak (ca 6,000m)

Nicolas Favresse (Belgium )- Mathieu Maynadier (France) – Carlitos Molina (Argentina) – Jean-Louis Wertz (Belgium)

Pathan Pillar, 900m, 6b A1. Fixed rope and capsule style.

Greenland, Mythics Cirque, Ataatap Tower (ca 1,350m)

Philippe Batoux – Lionel Daudet – Patrick Wagnon (France)

Northeast face, 1,000m, 7a A2. Capsule style.