Grandes Jorasses : Hard Winter Ascent for Léo Billon, Seb Ratel and Benjamin Védrines

Directe de l'Amitié

The summit of the Jorasses ©Billon-Ratel-Védrines

Barely back from a second North Face in a row, Léo Billon is enthusiastic: It’s the most beautiful mountaineering route I’ve ever done in the Alps!” With Sébastien Ratel and Benjamin Védrines, the mountaineer who is a member of the Groupe Militaire de Haute Montagne has something to be happy about: after the Directissime Harlin completed at the Eiger a week earlier, they are back from the Grandes Jorasses, yesterday, via the Directe de l’Amitié, an itinerary often mentionned as the toughest of the Jorasses. By telephone, Léo Billon gave us the story of those dense days, of those suspended bivouacs, with the Matterhorn already in sight. To complete this great trilogy.

Léo Billon is savoring his return to the valley after three nights out, two of which were suspended on the north face of the Grandes Jorasses, with his companions Sébastien Ratel and Benjamin Védrines. A pizza to celebrate this Directe de l’Amitié, a well-named route when, two weeks in a row, we share icy lengths and bivouacs under the stars in the middle of winter. No doubt he, like Léo Billon, should not love his couch too much to venture into the north face of the Grandes Jorasses, a week after having spent four bivouacs on the north face of the Eiger.