From May 8-15, 2024, we spent a week in Ticino at the Bigwallcamp - the focus was on tapping our fingers and pulling ourselves up on dizzying placements. We were accompanied on our expedition by experts Robert Jasper and Jörn Heller.

Our meeting point on Wednesday evening was the campsite in Gordevio. Robert, who had already scouted potential first ascents, found interesting routes on the Parete di Sonlerto, which were to become our program for the next few days. Together we wanted to open up two possible routes in big wall style.

The next day, we were given an introduction to aid climbing before slowly working our way through fine cracks and intersections. It became clear that aid climbing can be strenuous and takes a lot of time. The laboriously climbed meters were secured with static ropes and after a long day we returned to the campsite.

The following day, we first had to jumar up the fixed static ropes before continuing with aid climbing. Although the procedure was monotonous (set the placement, clip in the Fifi, test the placement, pull up and set the next placement), the placements were always different and required an intensive examination of the rock and its structures. Some of the placements were windy and there was a lot of air below us, which kept things exciting. So the day was very entertaining and there was no room for boredom. In the evening, Jörn, our second instructor, joined us and we listened to an exciting talk about Thomas März and Fabian Hagenauer's trip to Patagonia.

On Saturday, we split into two groups. One part of the group alternated between listening to a workshop on portaledges and sleeping on the wall, while the other half continued to work on our routes. There was also time to get some free climbing meters in the Super Cirill and to explore and plan a trad route at the base of the wall. After a long day, we spent the night on the wall in our portaledges. Thanks to the clear starry sky above us and the great atmosphere in the team, we almost felt like we were camping in luxury.

On Sunday morning, we started early to complete our routes and dismantle the fixed ropes, as rain was forecast for the evening. We prepared everything so that potential repeaters could also have fun. Dismantling the fixed ropes proved to be quite time-consuming. In total, we opened a trad project in 4 days and extended two techno routes, namely "La Scimmia tecno" with its extension to "La Scimmia tecno estensione" and the "Zecken-Highway". Only the stance hooks were set. Our trad project, on the other hand, is still waiting for a successful redpoint ascent.

The next morning, as the weather deteriorated, we started to draw the topos for our routes. In the afternoon, we took advantage of a short break in the rain to improve our Jümar technique. It turned out that one-arm pull-ups are quite exhausting in the long run, but after a few rounds of Jümarn on Ponte Brolla it suddenly felt a lot easier!

In the evening, Robert and Jörn told us about their exciting expedition experiences, which meant that it was quite late before we went to bed. But that wasn't so bad, as the weather was going to be bad the next morning anyway. In changeable weather, we concentrated on efficient hauling and setting up fixed ropes again on the last day at Ponte Brolla. Despite the rain, we were able to climb a few overhanging routes in the afternoon that had remained dry before the course came to an end.

Perfectly equipped for your next bigwall adventure...