Together with a friend from Munich I climbed my first alpine couloir last weekend, the so called Goulotte Chéré (D-, 4, 250 m), at the Triangle du Tacul in Chamonix:
The conditions are very dry at the moment, but still perfect and the alpine ice felt much easier to climb than waterfall ice in a comparable grade (WI 4). Two other parties were following us and, therefore, after 6 pitches we abseiled from the top of the couloir in order to avoid any stonefall.
The Goulotte Chéré is a great and relatively easy climb and now I am really motivated to climb more and also longer couloirs in the future.
Goulotte Chéré in summary:
|Location||Chamonix, Triangle du Tacul, ~3700 m|
|Character||alpine ice couloir|
|Difficulty||overall: D-, ice: 4, up to 85°, 250 m, 5-6 pitches|
|Conditions||very dry but still good conditions, enough ice|
|Protection||2 bolds on each abseil point, no bolds in between, some slings might be present|
|Material||2x 50m rope (60m preferable), a few ice screws, a few mid-size friends|
|Remarks||After ~5 pitches a top out to the Triangle du Tacul is possible, but due to the high danger of knocking off stones, no other parties should be below. It is therefore recommended to abseil at the top of the couloir.|