Mont Blanc

 

Mont Blanc stands at 4,810m (15,782ft) above sea level, has been the preparation and training ground for many Himalayan climbs. In the 1920’s Mallory made an ascent of Mont Blanc in preparation to climb the highest peak in the world, Mt. Everest. Mont Blanc is one of the most beautiful and iconic climbs in the Alps and it draws crowds from all over the world, attempting to stand on the highest summit in the Alps. Climbing Mt. Blanc is physically demanding so you need to make sure you have the right training, preparation and team available to help you achieve this amazing experience of standing on the top of Mt. Blanc.  Check out our 2015 climbing dates.

A little bit more about the trek

When you are on Mont Blanc, you are not only preparing yourself for the task ahead of you and acclimatising, you are gaining experience and knowledge of using crampons, ice axes and ropes. We do require that you have some previous mountaineering experience to join this trip. You will also need a high level of fitness which is essential and we highly recommend first completing one of our Winter Skills courses in Scotland or elsewhere.

From experience, we like to use the Cabane d’Orny Hut in Switzerland and the Italian Torino Refuge hut for our acclimatisation schedule. The Cabane d’Orny is a great hut in a fabulous area; it gives access to superb rock routes and allows the group to traverse from Switzerland back into France across the breathtaking Trient Plateau. The Refugio Torino gives a great taste of Italy, is accessible no matter what the weather conditions and very importantly it is a good altitude for acclimatisation. Its use also allows another amazing alpine traverse from the Aiguille du Midi in France across the amazing Valley Blanche to Italy.

Climbing Mont Blanc is a challenging, strenuous but an extremely rewarding experience for any avid trekker looking to take the next step to mountaineering. With the right training, preparation and team we can help your dream of climbing Mont Blanc a reality.

What people said

“Reaching the summit of Mont Blanc in 2009 was an amazing experience, especially as all 16 of us on the trip succeeded in getting there. This level of success among a group of novice mountaineers on Mont Blanc is almost unheard of. Ian was the primary reason we all made it, as he made sure everyone had the right training and equipment prior to departure. Nothing was left to chance. At the same time we all thoroughly enjoyed ourselves and there was great camaraderie among the group. Fantastic! Thanks Ian!”
Oisin Ryan, Mont Blanc 2009

“I have known Ian for years and heard about one of his Mt. Blanc climbs in work. Ian was an inspiration to me, being the youngest Irishman at the time to stand on the top of the world. I wanted to join him on one of his adventures and adventure it was. Our trip was climbing two 4,000m peaks in 6 days. We set out to climb Gran Paradiso and Mt. Blanc. The adventure in climbing was amazing, but the journey with the team was incredible. We are all still friends 4 years later. It was truly one of the best trips I have ever been on. What a rewarding, challenging and immense experience to have in my life. Ian was a great leader, friend and look forward to getting out on the hills with him again soon.”
Simon Boland, Mont Blanc 2009

“I’m 36 years of age and the best holiday in my life to date has been the time when we went with Ian and 15 others, on a one week trip to summit Mount Blanc and Grand Paradiso in June 2009. We all succeeded in summitting, it was the most out of this world experience, filled with adrenaline, fun, fear and adventure. My most memorable moment was when at 12 midnight 1 hour before summit day we were all singing in the dorm, the famous Irish Euro Vision song “We were the rock and roll kids” and laughing with anticipation.”
Johnny Maher, Mont Blanc 2009

Itinerary


View Mont Blanc in a larger map

Day 1

You will land in Geneva and transfer by bus into the Chamonix valley, France for the start of our journey through the European Alps.  Your Guide will meet you after dinner to brief you on the itinerary for the week ahead.

Day 2

The day will start with a drive to Italy and a hike through the Gran Paradiso National Park forest, with trails up towards the Rifugio Vittorio Emanuelle II hut (2732m). After lunch you will practice ice axe and crampon skills on the glacier above the hut. If you haven’t used crampons or an ice axe before, this is where your introduction will take place. You stay overnight at the refuge. Sleeping at altitude is one of the best ways to acclimatise.

Day 3

Today you will climb the Gran Paradiso, at 4061m the highest mountain entirely within Italy. This is a great way to acclimatise for Mont Blanc and summit a 4000m peak at the same time. After the climb we will descend to the valley and drive back to Chamonix.

Day 4

Today we will do 1 of 2 plans, depending on the group and the weather. We take the lift up to the Aiguille du Midi (3842m) to traverse the Vallée Blanche, in order to gain further acclimatisation and continue your practice with ice-axe and crampons. You will walk on a spectacular glacier to reach the Helbronner, taking the lift back to the Aiguille du Midi in the Panoramic gondola. Or, in the case of bad weather or needing to rest before the Mont Blanc ascent, we can take the Montenvers railway up to the Mer de Glace.

Day 5

Now that your training is over, you are ready for the ascent of Mont Blanc. You will walk up to either of the Tête Rousse (3167m) or the Cosmiques (3613mm) huts. You will be at the hut by early afternoon, giving you plenty of time to enjoy the dramatic location.

Day 6

The Big Day! Weather permitting you will aim to summit Mont Blanc today.The ascent takes about 6 to 7 hours. You will either return by the same route to the Gouter hut or to go down to the Cosmiques hut, where you will spend the night.

Day 7

If you have not summitted the day before, you will make the attempt today requiring a 1AM start. After summiting, we will have to descend all the way down to the valley and should be back in Chamonix by mid-late afternoon. Your effort will be celebrated in our office.

Day 8

We will have our last breakfast at the lodge before departing home. Please note that this itinerary is an example of a Mt. Blanc week. Itineraries are variable and subject to change due to conditions, hut availability, the weather and each group.  The itinerary for groups wanting to incorporate different climbs for their week in Chamonix we will tailor an itinerary to suit your needs.

Ready to go?

Does Mont Blanc excite you? Take the next step towards achieving your goals in the mountains?  If so, get in touch today.  We pride ourselves on making sure that our clients have every opportunity to succeed on the mountains, including professional training advice, gear lists and video links on how to pack your bag, and much more.  We are always available to answer any questions you may have by email, phone or skype, so contact us today!