After three seasons of work, Matteo Della Bordella and Fabio Palma have completed Coelophysis, a 21-pitch 5.13c on the 2,000-foot-high Mahren sector of Switzerland’s Wendenstöcke cliffs. Della Bordella, 24, redpointed the crux fourth pitch, “a very technical 8a+ (5.13c).” Coelophysis is now the longest route on the 9,980-foot mountain’s water-carved limestone walls.
Palma, 43, spent 18 days over three years working on the new route, which was equipped “trying to use as few bolts as possible.” Most pitches require cams for protection, often in the flaring runnels characteristic of Wenden. There are two possible bivouac sites, atop the third and thirteenth pitches.
In addition to the crux fourth lead, Palma said, “the rest of the route has several challenging pitches, from overhanging to slab style.” The climb has mandatory free climbing as hard as 5.12b.
In 2005, Della Bordella and Palma, plus Domenico Soldarini, opened Portami Via (5.13a) on Wendenstöcke, a seven-pitch route that has seen only one known repeat, by Simon Anthamatten and Ueli Steck.
Date of Ascent: August 2008
Source: Fabio Palma