Piolet d'Or


Piolet d'Or

The Piolet d'Or (French for "The Golden Ice Axe") is an annual mountaineering award, given by the French magazine "Montagnes" and The "Groupe de Haute Montagne" since 1991. Nominations are selected by GHM and "Montagnes", and the award is chosen by a jury consisting of Guy Chaumereuil (the chief editor of "Montagnes" when the award was inaugurated), (until 1998) Jean-Claude Marmier (president of GHM when the award was inaugurated), the current president of GHM, the current editor of "Montagnes", the previous year's winners and three members invited by GHM, one of whom becomes the president of the jury. The criteria for the award are:

“La sélection des lauréats potentiels, ainsi que les conditions d’attribution du trophée obéissent à une éthique stricte, qui est dans la droite ligne des valeurs fondatrices du GHM. Haut niveau technique, engagement constituent certainement les principaux critères auxquels les membres du Groupe éprouvent tant d’attachement. L’originalité dans le choix de l’objectif, le caractère novateur dans la manière de conduire une ascension sont également des elements d’appréciation importants. La pratique de l’alpinisme est en effet en perpétuelle évolution, et cette dimension ne doit pas être oubliée. C’est par la transgression de certaines étapes qui furent considérées comme infranchissables que les mentalités ont évolué, et que des ascensions réputées impossibles sont devenues courantes… Le respect des montagnes qui nous entourent, la beauté du geste et l’esprit dans lesquels on les gravit sont ainsi devenus une des conditions primordiales dans l’attribution du prix. On ne peut en effet léguer aux générations futures de sommets meurtris au nom d’une éthique alpine dévastatrice sans altérer profondément l’esprit même de cette activité.” Yves Peysson Président du G.H.M. (Montagnes-Magazine, Janvier 1999) [http://www.grivelnorthamerica.com/headlines.php?id=27] . 14th Piolet d'Or. "URL accessed June 25 2006."]
This translates to
The selection of potential laureates, as well as the conditions of awarding the trophy obey a strict ethic, which is in line with the founding values of the GHM. High technical level and commitment certainly constitute the principle criteria to which the GHM members feel so attached.The originality in the choice of the objective and the innovative nature of the manner of conducting the ascent are equally important elements of appreciation. The practice of alpinism is in effect in perpetual evolution, and this dimension should not be forgotten. It's by the crossing of certain stages that were considered impassable that mentalities have evolved, and ascents reputed to be impossible have become commonplace…Respect for the mountains that surround us, the beauty of movement, and the spirit in which people climb those mountains are also primary conditions for the awarding of the prize. We cannot in fact pass down to future generations summits mutilated in the name of a destructive climbing style without profoundly altering the spirit itself of this activity
Controversy has surrounded the award, due to the non-quantifiable nature of climbing accomplishments, and the varying interpretations of 'alpinism' and 'respect for the mountains.' Controversy has been magnified when the award recipient completed the climb in 'heavy' style, spending large amounts of time on the ascent and leaving gear behind, as in the cases of the 1997 and 2005 awards. In 2005 Ian Parnell withdrew his nomination, as did Alessandro Beltrami, Rolando Garibotti and Ermanno Salvaterra in 2006 for what might be the first ascent of the north face of Cerro Torre. Marmier left the jury in 1998 explaining that "the decision of the jury has been a real disaster." [cite journal | last = Parnell | first = Ian
authorlink = | coauthors = | title = Victors of the Unwinnable
journal = Alpinist | volume = 16 | issue = Summer 2006 | pages = 58
publisher = Alpinist Magazine | location = Jackson, WY, USA | date = July 1, 2006
url = http://www.alpinist.com/doc/ALP16/unwinnable-parnell | doi = | id =
accessdate = 2008-02-09
]

2008 award

For 2008, the Piolet D'Or was canceled. The co-founders of the award decided to initiate a new process for selecting the nominees and winner, and the process could not be completed on a timely basis for 2008. [cite web
last = Griffin | first = Lindsay | authorlink = | coauthors =
title = 2008 Piolet D'Or Canceled | work = Alpinist
publisher = Alpinist Magazine | date = January 23, 2008
url = http://www.alpinist.com/doc/web07-08w/newswire-piolet-2008-cancel
format = | doi = | accessdate = 2008-02-09
]

2007 award

The 2007 Piolet d'Or was awarded on January 26, 2007 in Grenoble, France. The winners were:
* Slovenians Marko Prezelj and Boris Lorencic, for the first ascent of Chomolhari's northwest pillar. [cite web
last = Lambert | first = Erik | authorlink = | coauthors =
title = Prezelj, Lorencic Win 2007 Piolet D'Or| work = Alpinist
publisher = Alpinist Magazine | date = January 29, 2007
url = http://www.alpinist.com/doc/ALP18/newswire-piolet-d'or-2007-winner-prezelj-lorencic | format = | doi = | accessdate = 2008-02-09
]

Other finalist were:
* Kazakhs Denis Urubko and Sergey Samoilov, for a new route opened in alpine style on Manaslu's northeast face
* Slovenian Pavle Kozjek, for leading a new route on Cho Oyu, and for submitting images of the Nangpa La killings
* Ukrainians Igor Chaplinsky, Andrey Rodiontsev and Orest Verbitsky for a first ascent on the north ridge of Shingu Charpa
* Britons Ian Parnell and Tim Emmett for climbing the Southeast Pillar of Kedarnath Dome [cite web | last = | first =
authorlink = | coauthors = | title = Sharpening the Piolet d’Or: Nominations pick fast, alpine-style climbs - and civilian courage
work = Mount Everest dot net | publisher = ExplorersWeb Inc.
date = Dec 12, 2006 | url = http://www.mounteverest.net/news.php?news=15379
format = | doi = | accessdate = 2008-02-09
]

List of Recipients

*2007 Slovenians Marko Prezelj and Boris Lorenčič, for the first ascent of Chomolhari's northwest pillar
*2006 Steve House and Vince Anderson for the first rapid alpine-style ascent of the Rupal Face of Nanga Parbat
*2005 Russian team led by Alexander Odintsov for the first direct ascent of the North Face of Jannu
*2004 Valery Babanov and Yuri Koshelenko for an ascent on the South Face of Nuptse
*2003 Mick Fowler and Paul Ramsden for a new route on the North Face of Siguniang (6250m) in China
*2002 Valery Babanov for a solo climb of Meru Central
*2000/2001 Thomas Huber and Iwan Wolf for the first ascent of the direct north pillar of Shivling (6543m)
*1999 Lionel Daudet and Sébastien Foissac for the ascent of the Southeast Face of the Burkett Needle
*1998 Andrew Lindblade of Australia and Athol Whimp of New Zealand for the first direct ascent of the North Face of Thalay Sagar
*1997 Russian team from Ekaterinburg led by Sergey Efimov for the first ascent of the West Face of Makalu
*1996 Slovenians Tomaž Humar and Vanja Furlan for a new route on the East Face of Ama Dablam
*1995 Andreas Orgler, Heli Neswabba and Arthur Wutsher Germany for numerous new routes in the Ruth Glacier area of the Alaska Range and especially a new route on the South Face of Mount Bradley
*1994 Francois Marsigny of France and Andy Parkin of England for the new ice and rock route up the Esperance Col on Cerro Torre
*1993 The youth high altitude expedition of French Alpine Club (median age 20 years) for ascents in the Pamir Mountains
*1992 Michel Piola and Vincent Sprungli for the ascent of the East Face of Torre South del Paine in Patagonia (the name of the route is "Dans l'Oeil du Cyclone")
*1991 Slovenians Andrej Štremfelj and Marko Prezelj for a 3000m ascent of the South Pillar of Kanchenjunga's South Summit, 8476m, in the Himalaya

External links

* [http://www.huberbuam.de/archiv/e_index.htm Concerning Huber's 2000 Piolet d'Or]
* [http://www.grivelnorthamerica.com/headlines.php?id=27 Steve House's thoughts on the 14th Piolet d'Or and explanation of criteria for the award]
* [http://www.risk.ru/eng/mount/reports/chamonix/pioletdor/index.html List of winners until 1997 from risk.ru]
* [http://www.baskcanada.com/News/ice_axe2004.htm Partial list of recipients from baskcanada.com]
* [http://www.ghm-alpinisme.com/ Website of the "Groupe de Haute Montagne"]

References


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