French Alps : new big route on the south face of La Meije

Nicolas Jean dans Le Crux 7c+, la 27e et dernière longueur de Pulsations à la Meije. ©Benjamin Védrines

French Alpinists Benjamin Védrines, Nicolas Jean and Julien Cruvellier de Luze opened a new 650-meter, 27-pitch route on the south face of La Meije. For Alpine Mag, Benjamin Védrines looks back at the birth of this project and its completion two years later, with a detailed topo.

After two years in the making, Pulsations is born. The project to open the south face of La Meije by Benjamin Védrines, Nicolas Jean and Julien Cruvellier de Luze, which began in September 2021, has just been completed at the top of the fourth tooth, at 3953 meters above sea level.

A long-held idea for Benjamin Védrines, who has already completed a dozen rock routes on this south face: “Since I’ve been climbing on the Meije, I’ve realized that there’s still a lot of potential. There are quite a few routes by Jean-Michel Cambon, Christophe Moulin and Benjamin Ribeyre recently. But there are plenty of parts of the wall that have yet to be exploited. So the idea came to me to create my own line. When you have that mountaineering and adventurous spirit, you want to create something unknown.”

Nicolas Jean, Julien Cruvellier de Luze and Benjamin Védrines at the summit of Pulsations, 4th dent de la Meije. ©Benjamin Védrines

The 650-metre route, rated ED+, 7a obligatory and 7c+ max, took them four days to open over two years. “We had opened the second part in gneiss with Nicolas two years ago. And we wanted to open the bottom before promoting