This classic ski traverse begins below Mont Blanc in the beautiful Chamonix Valley. Traveling through the heart of the Alps, each day we are treated to spectacular scenery and great skiing.
A classic descent in Chamonix from the Aiguille du Midi to the valley bottom down the famous Vallee Blanche. A perfect day to get into the swing of things, review our avalanche system, check our gear and get into the swing of things. We will ski big glaciers and outstanding terrain that can not fail to thrill. We return to Chamonix and spend a second night there.
From town, we ride lifts to the Col de Grande Montet and ski into the valley of the Argentiere glacier. Now we are on the route and we will spend our first night in an excellent recently refurbished mountain hut. A shortish day to allow for snafus and logistical delays; there is plenty of slopes near this hut to occupy our time.
An early rise gives us excellent conditions to skin up and over the Col de Chardonee and to one of a few locations when we actually use a rope; depending on conditions anything from a steep ski to 60m lower will be required, fantastic. Down and up and into Switzerland where we can stay at the Trient hut or if time and conditions allow we can tour longer and spend the night in the village of Champex.
We will travel through the ski area of Verbier today and take advantage of it’s lift to get us to the top of Mt. Fort where we will be able to see a lot of the terrain that over the next days we will be able to venture through. Down a long run of this legendary area to below the Rosa Blanche which we skin up (sometimes to the very summit!) and enjoy a long run down into yet another valley where we find that nights repose in the Prafleuri hut.
Another early start as we cross a lot of south-facing slopes above the Lac Dix and travel into the heart of the mountain in the Arolla district. We spend the night below the spectacular view of Pigne de Arolla in the Dix hut.
A fantastic day that begins with an ascent of the Pigne de Arolla (3796m) one of our high points on the route and truly a ski mountaineering adventure. Then we get to ski down the other side to the Tolkenesk refuge of the Vignette Hut. The ear to ear grin almost hinders our feasting on the multi-person Rosti that can found there!
A long day that delivers. Upon ascending the final col near the peak of Tete Blanche we receive jaw-dropping views of the north face of the Matterhorn – and then we get to ski down, down below it and into our final valley leading to Zermatt. A truly rewarding day to finish upon.
An extremely important day for the success of the trip as this is our cushion. A multitude of things beyond our control can be thrown at us but with flexibility being the key and having this cushion we can sidestep a little and carry on with the grins never wavering. If all goes according to plan however then we have an extra day of skiing in the Zermatt area where there is enough to fill another ski vacation all on its own or strudels and café to your heart’s content.