ApproachWe left Belgium by car on thursday night, July 5th. It was raining, as it had been for the last few weeks. The weather prediction for the weekend looked positive. We would have two sunny days to climb the Allalinhorn.
Fridaymorning, nine hours later - we put the car on the train in Kandersteg and drove through the Lötschberg tunnel (more info on www.blsalptransit.ch)- we arrived in Saas Grund, where we had breakfast.
We parked the car in the parking of Saas Fee (Payed 11€ for 24Hrs parking) and took the Cable car to Felskinn.
If you plan to climb the Hohlaubgrat and descent the normal route the sheapest cable car ticket combination is to take a two way ticket to Felskinn and a one way ticket from Mittelallalin station down to Felskinn. It seems that you can get a discount if you show an Alpin Club membershipcard, but we forgot to ask :-(
From the Felskinn station, there's an easy hike to the Brittaniahut. With icy conditions or fresh snow, you could need ice ax and crampons to get to the hut.
From the hut and if weather permits, you have a beautiful view on the Strahlhorn and the Hohlaubgrat of the Allalinhorn.
The Brittaniahut is very well organised, depending on your plans for the next day and the size of your party, you will be appointed a room and a suggested wake up time. For the Strahlhorn, wake up time is 2:45 a.m. and for the Allalinhorn 3:45a.m.
The climbLittle did we know, that we shared a lager with people that where climbing the Strahlhorn. Otherwise we would have ignored the first wake up call by the wirt. It's only when we were all geared up and ready to go, that we realized that we got up an hour earlier than we were supposed to.
So we didn't have to worry about the time.
When you leave the hut, it will take you 15 minutes to hike down on rocky terrain to reach the glacier.
Once on the glacier, you have two choices, you can eather head directly towards the Hohlaubgrat by immediately crossing the glacier and scramble up the rocky ridge or you can keep left on the side of the glacier, avoiding some crevasses until you gain some 200 meters of altitude, and than cross the glacier to head up to the ridge via a snow field. We chose for the latter, it is a bit longer, but it gives you more time to get into your ritme, before the steeper sections start. Once on the ridge, you see the entire route in front of you.
When you arrive at the Feejoch (3826m), this is a good spot for a short break, before you head on to the crux. If you have several ropeteams in front of you, it would be wise to wait here for your turn, rather than standing on 50° snow for an hour or so.
Once you climb the rockstep, you will be at the top after a few minutes.