In 1980 there was a partial collapse of the central pillar. So the huge dièdre on the left side of the prominent pointed pillar is partially destroyed by rockfall, in the centre of the W face. The line is very direct but needs a prolonged dry spell to render it climbable with a modicum of enjoyment. It has seen very few repetitions though the upper section would provide an alternative finish to many of the routes on the lower wall.
R Desmaison and P Mazeaud, 4-5 September 1959
The foot of the face can be reached easily in 1h 30 min from Plan l'Aiguille. From the station follow the patch towards the little lake, passing N of it and crossing the moraine to reache the Blaitière glacier. Traverse the dry, level glacier and reach the crest of the far moraine at 2.475 m. The path continues across the next moraine (good bivouac sites at the top, 2.525 m) to the Nantillons glacier wich is crossed almost horizontally to the base of the Rognon (1h 15 min). This point can also be reached from Montenvers in 2 h.
Generally the "Narrows" to the left of the Rognon is a chaotic icefall though occaionally it can be a straightforward ice slope wich allows the Rognon to be bypassed completely. Get onto the Rognon from the left and climb steep but easy rocks reaching the crest at about half-height.
Climb the dièdre directly (cracks and chimneys IV and V) with an exit to right to the top of the pillar from where the terraces are easily reached. Climb up the terraces on the left to their apex at the foot of some overhanging walls. Climb a widening jamming crack on the left (V) then slant right up a rampline for 2 pitches to a flake on the left (V). Traverse right to a big chimney-dièdre coming down from the NW ridge. Climb it to the upper section of the ramp (V). Follow this up and right, eventually moving round a corner to gain a steep cracked slab (IV+) above the overhanging walls of the buttress. Now climb straight up, following a series of cracks, dièdres and chimneys (IV, V and 1 pitch of VI with a few aid moves) to join the upper section of the Cordier Pillar, 2 pitches below the N summit and Brèche 3.421 m
Harness, ropes, pegs, friends, cams, karabiners and all the necessary gear for a high-technical rock climb.