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The Climbing Club • View topic - Climbing in the Western Alps

The Climbing Club

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PostPosted: Tue Aug 23, 2005 2:27 pm 
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I just returned from 6 days of climbing in the Western Alps. First we drove to Grindelwald (Switzerland) to climb the Jungfrau (4158 m) in the Eiger-Mönch-Jungfrau region. This was basically a warm-up trip to get used to the altitude.

Then we drove over to Courmayer (Italy) just south of the Mont Blanc massif. We wanted to climb Mont Blanc (4808 m) but did not want to do it via the terribly overcrowded route from the Refuge du Gouter. So instead we ascended via the less travelled Italian Route (Pope Route) and descended via the very scenic Trois monts Route to the Aiguille du Midi, which made this an awesome (although long and tiring) traverse.

I'll post some detailed trip reports soon. Here are some photos:

This is on the Jungfrau in the early morning:


The first day on Mont Blanc, approaching the Refuge Gonella. Looking down at the Glacier du Miage:


On the summit day, after ascending the Glacier du Dome. Here the route joins the Gouter route and goes over the Bosses ridge to the summit:


On the spectacular Bosses ridge leading up to the summit. The ridge is really long and exposed so one has to take special care when passing other parties:


Obligatory summit shot (Benjamin, me, Claus-Dieter):


This is on the third day, after spending the night at the Refuge des Cosmiques. This snow ridge leads up to the Aiguille de Midi that is served by two cable cars. Here is where climber meets tourist:





While chilling out amongst the tourists on the observation deck we watched some climbers on the Aiguille du Midi traverse, a very popular alpine climb:


The Mont Blanc massif is a great playground for climbers. Huge glaciers, plenty of rock spires with a lot of great alpine climbs. We went there at the hight of the season, but the area is pretty big and so the crowds actually weren't the problem I had expected them to be. I'll definitely be back.


Last edited by Daniel Arndt on Sun Feb 12, 2006 10:22 am, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Wed Aug 24, 2005 4:26 pm 
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Nice pics. Nice work gettin' up Mt. Blanc esp. via up a less crowed route - that's always laudable. If I was going to Scotland for longer I would definately give that mountain a try.

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PostPosted: Wed Aug 24, 2005 4:27 pm 
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Oh, yeah. I'm thinking about going to Munich for Oktoberfest... You think it's worth it?

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PostPosted: Wed Aug 24, 2005 8:48 pm 
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Way to go, Daniel. That is a good roundup for six days in the Alps. When I climbed Mont Blanc I wish I had done the Tacul-Maudit-Blanc enchainement, but I have to agree with you that the Bosses Ridge was cool. Your descent was a good plan instead of facing the crowds. Congrats on a great climb.

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PostPosted: Wed Aug 31, 2005 2:34 pm 
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James, I don't know, haven't checked it out myself yet. But I heard that the Octoberfest has gotten pretty touristy recently. This year the price for a "Mass" of beer (1 liter I think) is 7 Euros...


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