The Haute Route Chamonix to Zermatt

This is the classic ski tour. Everybody has heard of it. Although it can be busy at times it deserves its classic status. It links the two mountaineering and skiing capitals of Europe. It links Mont Blanc and the Matterhorn. It travels through 3 countries and follows the high plateau that straddles the Swiss Italian Border. Although popular it is not easy. There are some technical cols to climb, a complex crevassed glacier and some long hikes. But that’s one of the reasons behind its classic status.

Typical itinerary:

Day 1. Shakedown and preparation day in Chamonix

We check all the equipment is working and suitable for the week ahead. We have some time to do any adjustments and buy or borrow any extra items. we also get to ski together for the first time and get to know the team. Working together on this trip and building a cohesive team is part of the success criteria. Arriving to the trip fit, prepared and with the appropriate skill level for the week is your personal responsibility. We can help you prepare prior to the trip with our training and preparation programs and courses. We also run some easier and shorter ski tours so that you can build towards this ultimate goal.

Day 2. Argentiere to Trient Hut

Normally we take a cable car to the top of the Grand Montet then descend to the Argentiere glacier. From there we then traverse via the col de chardonnet our the col de passon. Both Cols have their pros and cons. Then it is onward over a few more cols to arrive at the Trient hut situated above 3000m. This is a challenging day and we generally feel the impact of the altitude.

Day 3. Trient Hut to Mont Fort Hut.

Leaving the hut just after dawn we ski down the Trient Glacier then climb up over another col then make a long and satisfying ski descent down the Val d arpette to Champex. We can get some lunch in this picturesque village then head on by reliable Swiss public transport to le chable, where we join the ski area of Verbier. Some mechanical uplift and a bit of piste skiing bring us to the Mont fort hut and restaurant where we overnight.

Day 4. Mont Fort Hut to Prafleuri Hut

A slightly easier day with a spectacular view from the summit of RosaBlanche followed by a great ski down to the hut

Day 5. Prafleuri to Dix Hut

A day of mainly hiking. Beautiful wild terrain. Following the banks of the Lac de Dix the climbing up to arrive at the Dix Hut.

Day 6. Dix Hit to Vignettes Hut

Another challenging day where reach the highest point on this ski tour, The Peigne d’Arolla. Weather is often an issue on this day and we need very good weather to be able to travel this high. If this happens we are rewarded with views from Mont Blanc to the Matterhorn and many of the summits in between. An excellent and challenging ski from the summit brings us to the spectacular Vignettes hut perched precariously on the edge of a cliff.

Day 7. Vignettes to Zermatt Village

This is the day we have been waiting for. An early start brings us to the glacier. Then throughout this long day we traverse several cols of various levels of difficulty until finally, we arrive at the col de Valpelline. There before us we will see the amazing pyramid of the Matterhorn. We take the skins off for the last time and prepare for the long, challenging but enjoyable ski all the way to Zermatt. This must be one of the longest and most spectacular ski descents on any of the classic alpine ski tours. We normally arrive in Zermatt in time for a well-deserved lunch and cold beer ( or whatever takes your fancy). Then we have the choice of an overnight in Zermatt or onward travel ( usually by train or taxi to Chamonix or some other destination of your choice.

 

 

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