Mont Blanc Climber's Log
[ Sign the Climber's Log ]
|dankras||Route Climbed: Via Mont Blanc de Tacul and Mont Maudit Date Climbed: September 16, 2003|
|Good but blistery day.|
|Posted May 24, 2004 2:34 am|
|Gumpie||Route Climbed: Grand Pilier d'Angle - Bovin Vallencant Couloir, TD+/ED 1 Date Climbed: summer 1992|
|Perfect conditions that day. Started about 4 AM from the biouvac and reached the route at daybreak. Fantastic ice climb through the couloir and over the 80-90 degree serac above (broke my ice axe there). Mt Blanc peak as overcrowded as usual, lots of trafic down the ridge to the Vallot. (not a welcome place-lot's of rubbish). We stayed there only a few minutes, couldn't stand it, and continued to the Grand Mulet. Had a monster dinner and lot's of Vin Rouge to "rehydrate". Slept there for 12 hrs before we returned to Chamonix.|
Great climbing partner!
|Posted May 19, 2004 8:54 pm|
|Mathias Zehring||Route Climbed: several Date Climbed: 1987 - 1992 - 1999|
|1) September 14th 1987: normal route|
With a group of german alpine club. Though we had a reservation at the Gouter hut, we had to sleep just on the floor, without any matress or blanket., because the hut was totally overcrowded.. Thank god the night was finished at 2 a.m. The ascent was very cold, above 4500 m I felt the height, but we reached summit at 8 a.m. Weather was hazy, no clear sight.
2) August 21st 1992: traverse
A friend had left me durning our mountain holiday, so I booked "on last minute" a guided week at MB. Since last time, the hut had received an additional sleeping building where we as prefered guests slept very well, while other again had to use the floor. I felt a bit ashamed.
Again we started at about 3 a.m.. I was lucky that my recently injured knee did not cause problems and we reached summit at about 7a.m. Only our team (out of 3) did the descent to the other side, crossing the shoulders of Mont Maudit (where we met Hans Kammerlander with a television team) and MB de Tacul. A final ascent brought us to Aiguille du Midi station. It was a great trip, but just following a guide and not having own responsibilities was not that what I was looking for.
3) June 3rd 1999: ski route
After we had made trips for acclimatization on Alphubel and Allalinhorn we took the Aiguille du Midi cablecar to it's mid station. On the last remaining snow we traversed to Bossons glacier where we had to use the rope because of the many crevasses at the Jonction before climbing to Grand Mulet hut. There we stayed 3 nights! The next day -as expected - the weather was cloudy and windy. We started though and reached the Grand Plateau. After a thunderstorm in the late evening there were stars on the sky and it was very cold when we started at app. 3 a.m. A french group with guide were ahead of us and did a track in the fresh snow. Using ski crampons was very important because of the hard snow below the little fresh snow. At the slope from Grand Plateau to Col du Gouter we came into heavy storm. We fixed skis on an iron stick and climbed the last meters to Vallot hut with crampons. The hut was cold inside but we were happy to get out of the storm for a while. There we took all clothes we had and made the final ascent on Bosses ridge. This was not difficult but safe walking with crampons, even in the storm was very important. The french group had turned because of the storm so we four and two from austria where the only climbers on that fine day to reach the summit. After we had reached our ski agan we had still a nice downhill to Grand Mulets hut where we stayed another night. So climbing MB was almost like an expedition
|Posted Apr 25, 2004 8:38 am|
|sokolxxx||Route Climbed: Gouter Date Climbed: 24 Juli 2002|
|Weather was perfect...over the clouds|
|Posted Apr 25, 2004 7:27 am|
|Antonio Giani||Route Climbed: via normale Date Climbed: 1973|
|dal rifugio Gonella|
|Posted Apr 13, 2004 2:28 am|
|maria grazia s||Route Climbed: normal france route Date Climbed: July 1977|
|Posted Apr 9, 2004 1:38 pm|
|Farmer||Route Climbed: normal route from Aig.midi Date Climbed: juli 1998|
|Nice mountain with a lot of crazy people on it!!!!|
|Posted Apr 9, 2004 9:40 am|
|Phillip Stasiw||Route Climbed: Dome du Gouter Date Climbed: 15 August 2002|
|Bivied at Tete Rousse first night,above Gouter hut at tent city on the second,easy walk but had to pop into Vallot Hut to sort out someones crampons out,not a great place to spend half an hour!Great view from summit,and a mad rush all the way back down to Les Houche for a beer.|
|Posted Feb 17, 2004 8:12 am|
|Eelconl||Route Climbed: Dome de Goûter Date Climbed: August 2003|
|With 3 Belgian guys and 3 Husky dogs we reached the top on a fantastic day!!!|
|Posted Feb 16, 2004 1:37 pm|
|Dan Bailey||Route Climbed: Grands Mulets Date Climbed: Summer 1998|
|Stormed off and had to retreat from the wee bivvy hut on Gouter Ridge. Big crevasses and seracs on the Grands Mulets route - may not be a wise ascent in summer|
|Posted Feb 10, 2004 11:54 am|
|carruthersneil||Route Climbed: Dome du Gouter Date Climbed: 1992|
|My first glaciated peak. Equiped with leather boots, strap on crampons, a millets anorak and a walking axe attached with bungy cord. Quite amazing we didn't die!.|
|Posted Jan 28, 2004 9:27 pm|
|David_Holland||Route Climbed: Normal route dome du gouter Date Climbed: 07-08-2001|
|Tree words: Cold, Sun, Great!|
|Posted Jan 22, 2004 2:02 pm|
|George66||Route Climbed: Route via Grands Mulets by skis Date Climbed: 17-June-1988|
|learned the semantics of the sentence "réveillé à minuit" at Grand Mulet, gone to refuge vallot with ski, then walked to the summit |
very cold wind on top
|Posted Jan 21, 2004 7:14 am|
|Josh||Route Climbed: Aiguille du Midi Date Climbed: August 2003|
|We didn't make the summit due to weather conditions, but it was still increadible! Next time....|
|Posted Jan 19, 2004 5:01 pm|
|Nyle Walton||Route Climbed: Dome du Gouter Date Climbed: Late July, 1959|
|During my first big summer of hitchhiking around Europe, I got rides from Oxford to Pamplona via Paris and Barcelona. For one action-packed week, I ran before the bulls every morning and smoozed with Ernest Hemingway every afternoon at the Bar Xoco after the bullfight. I got drunk on cheap wine and lay down with drunk women in my sleeping bag at the sports grounds after midnight. The fiesta of San Fermin was a blast and it was a relief when I got a ride with an American school teacher across Spain to Lisbon. Gradually I made my way north to Santiago and across northern Spain to San Sabastian and then northeast across France to the Alps. By late July, I was in Chamonix staring up at the highest peak in the Alps. I rented an ice ax and crampons and took a telepherique uphill and hiked to the base of the Aiguille du Gouter. It was a steep scramble up to the Refuge du Gouter following dots on the rocks. |
The hut was crowded with climbers. I found a place to lay my sleeping bag and went to sleep. At three am, I awoke to find a female leg curled around mine. A French women had mistaken me for her boyfriend lying on the other side of her. I silently wondered how to exploit this opportunity. Instead I got up and put on my boots and crampons and roped up between two officers in the Luftwaffe from Hamburg. We set off in the darkness up toward the Dome du Gouter following the light of head torches. As the sunlight lowered on the Dom, we cleared its crest and continued up the narrow corniced ridge to arrive on the spaciously level summit of Europe by seven am. The day was perfect. On the horizon we could see the Matterhorn which I had climbed four years before clearly to the northeast. I felt that I had accomplished something significant and spent the rest of the summer hitchhiking to Zermatt and Vienna and into Yugoslavia.
|Posted Nov 8, 2003 12:38 pm|
|flearreta||Route Climbed: Dome du Goûter Date Climbed: August 22, 2003|
|August 2003 was a pretty bad month for alpine climbing in the Mont Blanc Massif. Lots of rock falling in the "classic" routes of most peaks. Beacuse of the increased risk conditions and to discourage climbers of going up, CAF closed the Gouter Hut since mid August (no guard or food/water, front door was left open as well as two dormitories).|
Nevertheless, having checked the Grand Couloir's rock fall conditions a day before my friend Jim and I give it a try very early in the morning of Wednesday 20 (took first tramway to Nid d' Aigle) and by 11AM we were crossing the 15 second, 40-meter traverse dash in 20-25º terrain of Le Grand Couloir (the crux of the climb). Doesn't sound as much of a deal but trust me, they are the scariest 15 seconds of your life. Once we've crossed, it tooks us 1.5 hours to scramble (max. II) to the Gouter Hut at 3800m. Thursday 21 was spent in the hut as the weather was really bad for a summit attempt (wind, snow, fog, the works). Conditions on Friday 22 morning were completely the opposite from what we experienced the day before: completely cloudless, windless and a very bright moonlight. We departed at 3:50 AM from the Gouter (no need to get up earlier as the mountain was almost empty). The mountain was ours! By 8:20 AM we were first for the day at the summit! A great experience! By the time the last group arrived about half hour later we were ONLY A DOZEN PEOPLE IN THE SUMMIT! A unique and probably unrepeatable moment! We stayed for a full hour taking pictures and enjoying our uncrowded summit. On our way down we did a half-hour stop at Vallot to drink/eat and by noon we were back at the hut.
By 2:00 PM we were heading down the couloir ridge and an hour later taking our chances in the Bowling Alley for the last time. But this time it was different: it was 3:00 PM (hotter), instead of 11:00 AM (colder) when we crossed the first time, and the rock fall sounded like a continous symphony of bullets whispering around us. I have to wait for a while before I could cross as the rock fall seemed to be never ending. SCARY!
Very probable I would never try this particular route again, as I doubt I could ever experience it again in such great conditions (uncrowded Goûter hut, no risky passing on the thin Bosses ridge, dozen people in the summit). CHECK MY TRIP REPORT FOR ADDITIONAL POINTERS.
|Posted Sep 20, 2003 8:26 am|
|Rob Plas||Route Climbed: Dome de Gouter, les Bosses, summit and back Date Climbed: August 1999|
|My first experience with alpine climbing left me with mixed feelings: yes it was great, and well worth the effort, but the mass of it all along that specific route made me decide that I wanted more of this, but in a different way.|
|Posted Sep 16, 2003 1:44 pm|
|Huberschwiller||Route Climbed: Aiguille du Midi route (Three Monts from Refuge des Cosmiques) Date Climbed: 07 september 2003|
|We started at 2 h under light snowfall from the Cosmiques Hut . At 4 h on the Mont Maudit the sky was clear. After an unforgettable sunrise on the col de la Brenva, we reached the summit of the Mont Blanc at 8 h 45 and we were back at the Aiguille du Midi at 15 h 30. |
The Mont Blanc, a crowded summit ? Not at all in these september days. Max 20 persons summited this day. The closing of the normal route (Gouter) during several weeks after a lot of accidents in the Grand Couloir, made flee a lot of candidats. The Three Monts route remains in the moment the only correct, but long route to the summit : don't forget that you will have to climb a second time the shouders of the Mont Maudit and of the Mont Blanc du Tacul on the return if you want to come back by the same way (recommended if the Grand Couloir is in bad condition as now; the return over the Grand Plateau and the Grands Mulets Hut is not to use).
Updated infos of the difficulties :
- new snow and less ice
- fallen serac crossing of the Mont Blanc du Tacul is helped by a fixed rope; a big crevasse is to cross. Old photos of the Mont Blanc du Tacul are not useful to find his way in the night : the aspect of the north face has completely changed after the hot summer and several big serac falls.
- the last 50 m under the Col du Mont Maudit are steeper (50°) and are the most difficult passage of the route. A fixed rope helps the crossing.
|Posted Sep 8, 2003 11:42 am|
|Richard Purchon||Route Climbed: form Aig du Midi Date Climbed: 22 August 2003|
|frost line at 4000m Snow bridge on mont Blanc Tacul colasped required 5M serac climb and 30 m ice pitch on Mont Maudit, normal graded around PD. French Alpine Cub say out of condtion requires "True Technical Skill" dont know if that's true, found it rather easy, all though long. left the Cosmiques hut at 02:00hrs and returned at 18:30hrs.|
|Posted Sep 8, 2003 7:06 am|
|jsurinx||Route Climbed: Normal Route from the Gouter hut Date Climbed: 28 Aug 2001|
|We (Gilbert, Jan,Luc and myself ) started at 3.30 am from the Gouter hut after a terrible night sleeping on the floor. We reached the summit at 7.50 am with splendid views of the Alps. Wasn't so difficult but nice.|
|Posted Aug 29, 2003 1:50 am|