ApproachNorth ridge of Lagginhorn starts at Fletschhornjoch pass (3694 m) between Fletschhorn and Lagginhorn. Reaching this point directly would be (because of loose rocks, seracs and stonefall) a dangerous and difficult option
The only reasonable way to get there is the descent from the summit of the Fletschhorn (3993 m)
So the approach to this ridge is the normal route to Fletschhorn. From the summit just follow the easy rocks / talus to the east until you enter the gentle slope that you can walk down directly with crampons to the pass. I admit that we did this without rope but I did not feel well – at least at the plain of Fletschhornjoch there are some crevasses.
Route DescriptionFirst option is to gain the rocks of the north ridge via the bergschrund and some steep meters that require front work with crampons (45-50° I guess).
Then you just have to follow the ridge as directly as possible and necessary. Some steep sections can be avoided with short traverses in the flanks but especially the west flank may be icy so that you don't have his option. Then rock difficulty is UIAA III, otherwise UIAA II is sufficient. We had good conditions end July 2004 and were able to climb without rope.
Near the summit a nice firn ridge leads to the final rocks
descenton the normal route. If there is no ice, then it is much talus and almost no climbing needed. At app. 3450 m turn left and follow the cairns in a curve to enter the glacier. Cross the glacier to the bottom left where a path starts that leads down to Weissmies huts. The glacier can be avoided with going down the west ridge in total
Essential GearHarness, rope, ice axe, crampons, helmet
Rough timetableWeissmies hut – Fletschhorn 5 h
Fletschhorn – Fletschhornjoch 0,5 h
Fletschhornjoch – Lagginhorn 1,5 h (shorter when possible without belaying)
Lagginhorn – Weissmies hut 2,5 h
Together 9,5 h