Our goal was to climb The Fly in Lauterbrunnen in the best style possible – free, in one push from the ground. Climbing photos are often taken after the climb is completed, but for me, as an expedition photographer, I felt the most fitting style was ‘realtime’, capturing the moments as they occurred, with no photos shot afterwards – a difficult mission.
We needed an extremely strong climber, so I asked Alex Megos. For him this journey was into an unknown realm – his first big wall. His ability would be crucial for the hard onsights.
Our tactic was simple: to move as fast as possible, climbing ground-up in two teams and fixing rope up to our portaledges, then to see what happens. I initially tried to climb behind Alex, carrying a small photo setup in my backpack. This created a challenge for me, as I was always below Alex and therefore unable to take good photos. So we switched the teams on several pitches, enabling me to arrive at the belay first and shoot the leaders doing a hard lead from above.
This photo was taken while Alex was returning after his first attempt on the crux pitch (8c). Having run out of water, we were all totally f*cked. It was clear that if he didn’t succeed the next go we would have to go down, as there was another 100m of unknown terrain above. I shot this while rappelling down from the top of this pitch, which shows how overhung it is. Alex succeeded on his next go, and carried on to free the entire route, that same day!