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Zangerl and Larcher Repeat Eiger’s Hardest

It seems there's nothing this pair can't do!

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A few weeks ago neither Barbara Zangerl nor Jacopo Larcher had climbed a single route on the North Face of the Eiger. Now they’ve climbed a full three, including Odyssee, the hardest free route on the Alps’ most famous face at 8a+ (5.13c). Their four-day, ground-up ascent of Odyssee—all 1,400 meters and 33 pitches of it—was the first repetition of the route following the first ascent by Roger Schäli, Robert Jasper and Simon Gietl in 2015.

A post shared by Babsi Zangerl (@babsizangerl) on

Larched reported about the pair’s success on Facebook: “After 4 days we managed to both free climb this outstanding line, living another cool adventure together.”

Zangerl described on Instagram how the dicey conditions challenged them: “Some wet pitches scared us like hell and we were close to give up on some points. At the end the whole adventure went out pretty lucky.”

They each led the hardest pitches on the route, but swung leads on the easier terrain—the same approach they have used to free Yosemite big walls like Magic Mushroom (VI 5.14) and Zodiac (VI 5.13d).

Prior to repeating Odyssee, the partners climbed two other testpieces on the Eiger’s northern aspect: Magic Mushroom (5.13a, 600 meters) and Deep Blue Sea (5.12c, 250 meters).


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