Le Grand Capucin
How wonderful to manage to fulfil a highly improbable dream. I can't believe that the three days spent in the mountain were real. Indeed they were, owing to Liv Sansoz, Fabien Dugit and Cedric Lachat, Bertrand Delapierre up the rock , to the whole team of the base camp and to the carriers : Juliette Claye, Mathilde Emonet, Marcelle Emonet, Eliza Sprecher, Laurent Soyris, Boris, Paul Robach, Maxime Magnani, Sylvain Petrop, Stephane Gayraud, Thomas Bekker, Tim Green ( an rivalled pilot) I was able to climb up the Grand Capucin along the mountain track "l'echo des alpages ".We had to stop a few meters from the top because I could not climb any further up the stiff slope but we have done our upmost and enjoyed a great thrill, that's what matters.
Two weeks before, Cedric and Fabien had fixed the rope along the way up to make it easier for us.On sunday september the 6th, a team went up to the foot of the Grand Capucin to put up the base camp and fix the tyrolienne which will help me to go up the first three lengths not very stiff.They also materialized a landing area for the paramotor flown by Tim Green...
Yes indeed we had decided to do so in order to take me up to the base camp because it would have been a problem to go across the crevices with my sledge due to the state of the glacier.
On monday september the seventh at last I can launch into the adventure. We take the incredible Skyway.
There we are, we fly up to the base camp. An easy landing and a warm welcome from the team waiting for us.
Time flies quickly so we have to adapt ourselves to this long journey, nothing is like what we had expected , but I find what I like about alpinism : facing the unknown, reacting, doing one's best, keeping calm. I must confess my emotion when Fabien and Cedric decided to take part in the ascent; it is due to their great competence that we were able to fulfil this ambitious dream, adding to that the confidence of Liv... All this synergy made me feel safe in the middle of the mountains.
There, Cedric and Liv set up a hyper sophisticated engineering to enable me to climb 150 meters up the tyrolienne rope . I start climbing but strangely enough nothing is like what it was at the gymnasium... The rope seems 15 times longer!
I can't find the correct position to climb, my ribs are slashed so Fabien and Cedric hoist me up the rope.
At the end of the tyrolienne Fabien takes me on his shoulders and Cedric stays behind to hold my legs up to the platform where I will bivouac with Liv and Bertrand.
I wait in the sleeping bag with a thermos bottle and some food. As soon as Liv arrives, she starts preparing the meal. After a good night and a good breakfast, the only thing I want is to climb.
At last I find myself hanging on to the rope, Cedric keeps pulling me away from the slope to enable me to climb. He will do that all day long and at the end of the day he wonders why he is out of breath!
It was also good to find the quiet strength and confidence of Fabien .
Bertrand also helped us between 2 snapshots ! We climbed quickly enough to get to the top of our possibilities. Just in time to enjoy this moment, then a vertiginous descent clinging to Cedric down to the platform where we spent the night.
The following morning , a quiet wake up , breakfast served in the sleeping bag by Liv and Bertrand. In spite of his very bad night , Cedric will carry me down on a camping chair to the foot of the big Capucin . I am pleased to find Maxime there , full of good humour and energy , he had believed in this adventure right from the beginning.
At the base camp , a royal welcome, Juliette treats me to tea and cake .Watch out ! Take off is imminent....
I put on my ski suit, sit on the sledge and off we go over the mountain ! It's so beautiful. At that time, I feel a strange emotion.
I have enjoyed those 3 days spent in the mountains and I am happy to be in the paramotor now but I would have loved to stay up there...However, moving, going further on, that's life , isn't it ? So I decide to enjoy it all, to appreciate the energy that they have all required to finish......in a quite improbable landing of Tim and me in our skisuit on the...grass!
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