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Les Droites

 
Les Droites

Page Type: Mountain/Rock

Location: France, Europe

Lat/Lon: 45.93180°N / 6.98940°E

Object Title: Les Droites

Elevation: 13123 ft / 4000 m

 

Page By: Orphanage

Created/Edited: Mar 25, 2001 / Feb 24, 2006

Object ID: 150261

Hits: 32767 

Page Score: 87.31%  - 24 Votes 

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Overview

The Droites (meaning 'right ones' because they appear to be on the right side when looking at the ridge from the valley) is a peak in the Mont Blanc region, that just reaches the magic 4000 m border with it's east summit.
The most special thing about this peak is it's north face: It is considered to be one of the longest and hardest Rock&Ice undertakings in the Alps.It's 1000 vertical meters are very impressive if you are standing in front of the face. The other side (south) is somewhat friendlier, and the final steep parts looks quite small but still it is not very often climbed : The easiest route is already AD mixed rock and ice.

Please note: If you find any errors or outdated info on this page or want to add
more information, please send me an eMail, so I can correct it, or I can give you editing privileges.

Getting There

The closest International Airport for this region is Geneva. 
Most first time visitors will certainly want to see Chamonix and the Mt.Blanc before going on to the Droites. 

Transport:

  • Train: Railway station in the town. The Saint Gervais to Vallorcine line connects to the high-speed TGV line 
    in Annecy (in peak season the TGV runs directly to Saint Gervais) +33-(0)450 53 1298; +33-(0)8 36 35 35 35
  • Bus: Mont-Blanc Bus: Regular bus service covering all of the Chamonix valley +33-(0)450 53 0555 
    Daily services to Annecy, Geneva, Grenoble, Courmayeur, Aoste and Turin, as well as to all the principal
     towns in the Mont-Blanc region +33-(0)450 53 0115
  • Car: From:
     - Switzerland: starting from Martigny and passing by the 'Col des Montets', Cham is only a mere 16 km from the border.
     - France: Geneva is connected to Cham via a Toll-Higway and normal roads.
     - Italy: The Mont Blanc from Courmayeur makes the access very fast and easy year-round. 
Depending on the side you want to climb, you either start from
  • Chamonix for the easier south-side From Chamonix you can take the train up the 'Mer de Glace', continue over the glacier (crevasses!) and stay overnight in the 'Refuge de Couvercle' From there it is about 4-5 hours to summit
  • Argentiere for the north-face, which is just a few miles north of Cham. From Argentiere, you can take the 'teleferique' Grand Montets up and walk down again over the glacier (easy) to the "Refuge D'Argentiere". From there it is 7-12 hours to the top depending on the route
For more Details see the Approach to the Huts section below.

Red Tape

There is no limitations whatsoever: Climbing, camping, beeing happy: just enjoy !

When To Climb

A real winter ascent would be extremely difficult, but the conditions e.g. even beginning of November 2001 were just fine. The North Face is so steep that usually there is not much snow sticking to it. After a strong snowfall, one should wait for the next time it gets a little warmer, and the avalances will clean the face out again.

Staying Overnight

Hotels: Plenty in Chamonix and Argentiere, prices rather steep. Huts: The Refuges should be reserved during most parts of the year. Prices: ~50 FF = $7 US for Members of (Euro)Alpine Clubs ~100 FF = $14US for others Camping: Also possible in Chamonix on official Campground. Camping on the Mountain can be done, but try not to annoy anyone.

Mountain Conditons

Sorry, but most up-to-date information is only available in french :-(
  • www.chamonix.com Genereral Tourist and Weather Information
  • Office de Haute Montagnes (OHM) (+33-(0)450 532 208) offers a comprehensive information service about routes and weather conditions. Located in the building adjacent to Èglise-St.Michel church, 9:00-12:00 & 15:00-18:00 during the summer.
  • Information can also be gotten from the Bureau des Guides in Chamonix (+33-(0)450 530 088).
  • Tel. weather bulletin +33-(0)836 680 274
  • Tel. state of snow +33-(0)836 681 020

Approach to the Huts

To the Ref. d'Argentiere
There are 3 choices (depending on your time and energy)

  1. From Croix de Lognan (1970 m) in 3 - 3,5 h,
    to Croix de Lognan with cable car from Argentière: From Croix de Lognan, you go on foot up over
    the moraine crest till about 2250m. Than you continue horizontally to the glacier, which you follow on the orographically left side. After about 1 km, the glacier becomes steeper and more torn. You climb onto the morain of the Rognons, first over a slippery shelf, than via a marked way which you follow until you reach the upper end of the ice break. You climb the glacier with SE-direction and reach the hut above the moraine .
  2. On foot from Argentière in 5 h:
    From the ground station of the cable car, you follow the wide aisle of the ski-run. You leave it at the height of about 1750m and reach the way of the middle station of the cable car (2 h). Now, you need 3 h to the hut.
  3. From Aiguille des Grands Montets (summit station of the cable car from Argentière; last train up: 4:45 p.m.) in 2 h:
    From the summit station, you go via a stairway to the Col des Grandes Montets. You traverse a bergschrund (maybe with the help of a rope) and go up the steep hang to the Glacier Rognons.
    You go with ENE-direction on the western side along P. 3000 to P. 2754m. You go down southeastern to the glacier d'Argentière, which you reach above the icebreak. From here in 2 h to the hut.

To the Ref. de Couvercle

  1. You reach the hut from Montenvers in 3,5 h over the glacier:
    From Montenvers to the starting point of the hiking way to the Ref. d'Envers des Aiguilles:
    You have to follow the way with direction to Les Echelles which goes slightly down to the western side of the Mer de Glace. But before you enter the Glacier, you have to follow the way on the western side of the glacier for about 20 min. Now you have to go up the glacier first more on the western side, then just through the middle with SE direction to Les Moulins. Now you do not follow the marking signs to the moraines but
    continue with S and then E direction to the steep passages at Les Egralets (partly a little bit like a way).
    You go the steep passages up and via a good way through grass hangs to a moraine, from which you reach the hut soon.
    You can reach Montenvers:
    • Either with the special Montenvers-train from Chamonix. The train goes the whole year except from the middle of November till the middle of December. The first train starts during the season often not before 8 a.m., the last train down not after 6.30 p.m.
    • Or on foot from Chamonix on the marked way via Biollay in 2,5 h.
  2. Via a new climbing track below the Flammes de Pierre and the ends of the Aig. du Moine:
    Note: Because of ice avalanches, some passages of this route have become very dangerous.
    You have to ask for the actual conditions.

Routes

Check out this supercool page with clickable routes: http://www.montagnes.com/us/mount/droite.asp

External Links

Additions and Corrections

[ Post an Addition or Correction ]
Viewing: 1-2 of 2    
mamoUntitled Comment

mamo

Hasn't voted

Route description


From refuge de the Couvercle, to catch up the glacier of Talèfre for the track that it crosses towards and down the morainic 's steps . To go back it towards DOPING and then towards the contour line 3000m turning DOPING in direction of the East spur . To catch up the binding of the oblique corridor toright that cuts this last spur . To go back it (200m, 45° of average), and earns the arete. Or to exceed the spur and to climb the great slope of the Les Droites's pass being kept itself the most possible neighbors to cliffs of the same spur , in order then to follow left back (climbing) the first or the second ascent ramp corridor that allows to approach the spur and (solution easy, better if the oblique corridor is in bad conditions).


- To continue in oblique to right and scaling easy full of rocks terraces (max II°) until the base of the difficulties of compound and cliff.


- To continue large way towards right (being climbed) in order to exceed this barrier of approximately 100m. towards a large wall rossastro, than one lets on the left. Sequences do not obligate to you.


Over a snow slope is caught up (45/50°) that allows to earn a snow arete that leads to the feet of I lock full of rocks summit. To go around it to right, and finally with a length of easy compound, is arrived in point (locks full of rocks).





Configuration and route type comments :


The two accesses to the buttress, from the oblique corridor, and the great slope of the Les Droites's pass(+ easy) become dangerous for rolling stones from the late morning.





Specific equipment :


Some "friends" small medium measure /, nuts and accessory cords and "fettucce".





Route description (descent) :


On the ascent route, where series of anchorages for abseils from25 are present . Avoid the oblique corridor to the afternoon and the great slope of the Les Droites's pass in the late morning (rolling stones 's danger ).


Material for ice.
Posted Dec 16, 2005 5:46 pm
UlrichPrinzRe: Untitled Comment

UlrichPrinz

Hasn't voted

Hi Mamo

thanks for the description! I have added it to the south ridge route!

Regards, Ulli
Posted Feb 24, 2006 9:24 am

Viewing: 1-2 of 2    

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