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 The Piolet d'Or 2002 Festival

The prestigious Piolet d'Or award will be given out this week in the organized this year by the French Magazine Montagnes. The award is given to the most important Alpine achievement of the year. Chris Bonington is the lead juror this year. 

And the Nominees are:

Yuri Koshelenko and his team of 11 climbers for the first ascent of Lhotse Central [Our favorite]

Marko Prezelj and Stephen Koch for the first ascent of Lund on the SW Face, Denali

Mauro Bole, Mario Cortese and Fabio Dandri for the first ascent of the east face of the Trango Towers

Patrick Berhault for Alpine Traverse

Valeri Babanov for the first ascent of the North face of Meru Central Peak 

Jim Bridwell and Spencer Pfingsten for the 1st ascent of the East face, Dent Moore Alaska.

Recent past winners include such climbers as Vania Furlan & Tomaz Humar from Slovenia and  Thomas Huber from Germany.

Update: and the winner is: Valeri Babanov for the first ascent of the North face of Meru Central Peak !

Valeri Babanov is the winner of the Piolet d'or for 2002 for the first ascent of the North face of Meru Central Peak! This true solo first ascent of the 6310 meter peak was accomplished by climbing a 2000 meter section of mountain over a 5 day period, alone and without support. This was his second attempt on this route after failing in Spring 2001. Sir Chris Bonnington gave the award to Valeri.

His route on Central Meru

Pictures copyright© www.babanov.com

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