A British rock climbing team led by Leo Houlding completed the first ascent of the northwest face of Greenland’s Mirror Wall on July 22, according to expedition sponsor Berghaus.
Along with Houlding, Joe Möhle, Matt Pickles, Matt Pycroft, and Waldo Etherington spent 12 nights on the wall and free-climbed 23 of the 25 pitches before topping out on the 1,200-meter peak, the Berghaus website reports.
The team faced snowstorms, crevasses, and polar bears, as well as technical difficulties that forced them to aid-climb two pitches, according to Berghaus. After summiting, the climbers descended quickly to meet a helicopter that picked them up from base camp on July 28.
“After spending a lifetime climbing in the Arctic, I believe that the main face of Mirror Wall is the single most impressive unclimbed wall in the whole of Greenland,” said Paul Walker of Tangent Expeditions, the leading operator of mountaineering and ski touring expeditions to Arctic Greenland, according to Berghaus.