This high altitude trek links Chamonix to Zermatt on the Haute Route. These two are each part of the greatest mountaineering places around the Alps and Europe. having a walk throw the alps between Chamonix and Zermatt is entering a piece of History. We’ve made the altitude trip this week, called « Chamonix Zermatt through the glaciers ». Crampons, rope and alpinists skills are required.
What’s in this post Haute Route Chamonix Zermatt
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Mont Blanc range, Haute Savoie, France, and Valais, Switzerland.
- Guillaume CHRISTIAN
You have done this traverse Haute Route Chamonix Zermatt. You can download high resolution pictures of the week :
Saturday 22nd july 2017
The trip starts in Chamonix. In fact, the walk starts on top of Le Tour resort, after two lifts that dropped us upon the mountain close to Col de Balme. We started after having checked our gear, shoes, crampons, axes, harnesses and helmets.
Refuge Albert 1°
It is not a long walk to Albert 1° Hut. We get there quite quickly to spend some time to rest in the hut, appreciate the landscape and the close glacier view. We just hope the luck we had with the weather today will last tomorrow : no rain !
Sunday 23rd July 2017
Col supérieur du Tour
Breakfast is at 5 o’clock. We manage to leave the hut a bit before 6:00 AM to reach the glacier and put the crampons on. Clouds are over our heads, put no rain this morning. At the Col superior du Tour a strong wind is blowing ! Our chance is having nice sun on the other side, on the Swiss side, and Trient Glacier.
The way down the glacier is gentle, not very steep, and we can have a nice time starring at the landscape. After a nice pic nic below Orny Hut, the trail leads to the top of télésiège de la Breya. A short break waiting for midd-day pause to end, nice for a drink at the local restaurant, and it’s time to go down using the lift. Champex is a small pretty and cosy village on a lake’s shore. Time is now spent resting and swimming in the lake before the night !
Monday 24th July 2017
Taxi to Mauvoisin dam
Rain has fallen during the night and it is now lowering down…. This morning our first walk will be in the taxi ! It was arranged that we will reach Mauvoisin Dam with the taxi going throw the lower valleys of Val de Bagne. The randonnée starts at Mauvoisin Dam.
Col de Tsofeiret
We’re lucky it is still dry at the moment for the first par of today’s walk. Today is a hiking day with no glaciers. We hoped this morning a nice pic nic and a swim in tsofeiret lake, but rain caught us just before getting there. So the aim is just now to reach Chanrion hut for a rest a dry clothes !
Tuesday 25th July 2017
Today the weather is bad again. We are hoping every morning for a better day, with heavy sun as the forecast says in the evening before. But every morning our wishes are disappointed ! We start from Chanrion Hut under snowfalls with strong wind !
Web re lucky to get some sun and less wind for the long climb up along Otemma Glacier.
Cabane des Vignettes
At the top of the glacier the clouds are back, with light snow fall. The problem is finding the route to Cabane des Vignettes ! Some crevasses are disturbing our route finding, and after some long time in deep fog the hut appears in the wind : here we are !
Wednesday 26th July 2017
Snow is falling this morning, deep fog is around the hut. The best we can do now is to go down to the valley instead of crossing Col de l’Eveque to Bertol Hut. In the valley at Arolla we will have a look at the last weather forecast to decide whether we are continuing the trip or not.
Cabane de Bertol, top of the Haute Route
Weather forecast is quite good for tomorrow, so we have the wish to carry on to cabane de bertol. Sun is even helping us at Plans de Bertol for the pic nic break. The climb to Cbane de Bertol is quite long, and finishes with steep ladder that leads on the flank of Clocher de Bertol where the hut is built.
In the evening sun comes out and we’re going to bed with a nice and good feeling for tomorrow, last day of our glacier trip to Schonbiel Hutte.
Thursday 27th july
Bad luck again. At 5:00 AM when I open hut’s door, snow and wind blowing just spread on my face.
We have breakfast waiting for the day to come and have a nicer idea of the situation. We manage to get a forecast on swiss meteo around 5:30, that says « cloudy all day long ». At 6:00 we decide to go down to Arolla. Glaciers to Schonbiel Hütte can only be crossed in clear weather.
We had a nice week with problems of weather, trying every day to carry on despite of the hard conditions. It’s time now to stop. I can just say « bravo » to everyone because it was not so easy this week and we manage to keep on with line as far as the mountain says »no ». Bravo again !