Via Classica, Fleischbank

Via Classica from Fleischbank, Wilder Kaiser, day 6

This was the day when Mihaela was completely conviced that we’re going to spend a day and a night on the route, the we’re going to spend ages getting down from the mountain and other doomsday scenarios. At the same time in the previous days I saw that if we set our minds to it we can be decently fast on comparable routes, and I was pretty sure that the route is really worth it. In Romania it’s not every day that you get the chance to climb 15 length 600m route on good rock.

 At the same time coming from Romania, the experience of alpinism and of climbing in general is a solitary one. We don’t like a crowded rock face, or sharing the same belay with more than one team, with all the entangled ropes which come with the entire experience. Maybe it has something to do with Romania, where currently climbing doesn’t have the same popularity as in other western countries (one could also say that there was a downfall in it’s popularity after the 80s).

Either way, in Wilder Kaiser, as well as in other parts of the Alps, in a normal route people start around 8, maybe a bit earlier for the long routes. So if you want to be a alone, you need to start either really early or rather late (the later options means that you need to move fast). During weekdays in Wilder Kaiser that tends to be a minor issue, but on weekend it can become problematic.

Taking advantage of Mihaela’s doomsday predictions we manage to get up with the sunrise and around  5:30 we leave the parking place towards the Westwall from Fleischbank. We start with the same climb towards Stripsenjochhaus, and it’s interesting to think that so many figures in the history of alpinism have stepped on the same road, on the same rock in another century. Different people, different times but perhaps the same dreams and the same enjoyment of spending time in the mountains.

We get to the start of the route, between the wall and a snow slope, and we start to move quickly on the first easy pitches, gaining altitude fast. If it’s one thing which I dislike about alpinism, is the feeling of being tied to the wall when the difficulty increases and when you start moving slowly on the wall. But today, on Via Classica the difficulty of the pitches (all bellow a classical V) enabels us to move fast, and it’s really  a nice feeling. If training in a gym has benefits, one of them is that it enables you to move fast on harder and arguably nicer routes. But on the other hand spending too much time in an indoor gym isn’t my dream, and we’re glad that we can live our small adventures on easier routes.

 The pitches flow one after the other, with nice dihedrals and cracks, on good rock with a logical and clear line. Without knowing it we get to the middle of the route, where the hardest and nicest 3 pitches follow, ending with with a vertical chimney which is climbed o a series of vertical cracks.

The route is realy nice, and I’m glad that we both can enjoy the route. Most likely there will always be differences between us from the physical possibilities, on one  hand due to gender differences or maybe because we have different opinions about training. But on the routes which we climbed this holiday we could both enjoy what we’re doing.


The last 3 pitches are once again easier, and we reach the end of the route after 7 hours, unexpectedly quick, so we get to relax a bit before starting the long descent. The day isn’t over yet, and we have to find a way to get down from here.

And it doesn’t seem to be so simple, as we have to climb and descent another peak, abseil down some dubious, climb once again, abseil once again, and start the long descent on Elmauer Tor. Even though during the entire holiday we usually moved quicker than the climbing guide said, the constantly needed more time on the descent. 
But still the place is incredibly spectacular, and I take some photos which seem brocken from a kingdom of rock. On the way dow we passed the east wall from Fleischbank, which has one of the hardest routes in Wilder Kaiser, and which is sort of the equivalent of the “Valea Alba” wall in Romania. 

Towards the end of the descent a summer rain starts, enough to dampen our spirit but fortunately enough it’s followed by a rainbow, the perfect crowning of a perfect day.


The east wall from Fleischbank.

The gate to Elmau (Elmauer Tor)

Climbing on good rock.


At the end of the route.

On the way down.

The upper part of Elmauer Tor.


An almost double rainbow.

The many colored arrow.




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