Larcher and Zangerl flash/onsight Eternal Flame 7c+ MP in 6 days

25 July 2022

Press release: "On Saturday the 23rd of July 2022, Babsi Zangerl and Jacopo Larcher succeeded in free climbing ‘Eternal Flame’ (VI 7c+ [5.13a], 650m) on the south face of Trango Tower (6240m), also known as ‘Nameless Tower’, in the Trango Group of Pakistan's Karakoram range. The big-wall route is widely regarded as one of the world's hardest free climbs above 6000m.

The pair spent 6 days on the wall, from July 18th to July 23rd, and managed to free climb each of the 24 pitches. They climbed without a single fall during their ascent, which was made in one, continuous push. Something never achieved on the route, until now. All but the first two pitches can be considered as onsight flashes. They had already free climbed those first 2 pitches (also flashed) on their previous expedition, in Summer 2021. Babsi and Jacopo chose to ‘swing-leads’ - meaning they each led alternate pitches. However, they also decided they would both lead the four hard crux (7c-7c+) pitches on the route. All removable protection was placed on lead, as they climbed. They worked their way up the wall, over the 6 days, freeing each pitch consecutively (in the right order). On the 2nd, 3rd and 4th day of their attempt, they made limited progress up the route, due to the warm sun melting the snow and ice and causing the route to become wet. They chose to be patient and were rewarded with good conditions on the 5th day - leaving just 3 easy pitches to climb on the final day, before they were standing on the summit.

Joint statement from Babsi and Jacopo:
“Eternal Flame – A Dream came true!
An incredible line through the stunning 6240m high Trango Tower.
A sequence of 5 star pitches which we’ve rarely seen before, with the crux pitch being above 6000m. What a journey!
We are both exhausted and baked by the sun, but we’re super happy to have climbed this iconic line, without any falls.
Now it’s time to recover in Basecamp and enjoy our last days in this beautiful country.
Big congrats to Edu, for also realising his dream!"

Barbara Zangerl should be considered the best female multi-discipline climber in the world, by a country mile. When it comes to big wall climbing there's very few individuals that have a tick list as impressive as hers as well as Jacopo's. In 2019, she was given The National Geographic Adventurer of the Year award. Barbara has done four routes 8c+/9a and harder and Jacopo seven. When it comes to trad climbing, Jacopo has established what is potentially the only 9a+ in the world and Barbara has done 8c+.

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