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Climbing the Matterhorn - Some advice please

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Climbing the Matterhorn - Some advice please

Postby northcave » Mon Aug 16, 2010 12:43 pm

A friend and I want to undertake the pilgrimage of climbing the Matterhorn. We did plan to do it between 14th-22nd September. I hear there are two main ridges. Hornli and Lion. Am i correct in thinking that the Hornli Ridge is the best route from Zermatt?

The itinerary we had in mind would be to stay in the Rotehorn Hut for a few days and do some other routes and then assuming the weather was good go to the Hornli Hut after about 4 days and start from there around 4am ish. However i just realised the hut closes on September 15th due to the first snow. With this is mind would you say mid September is a little late to be going up?

Can anyone give any advice at all about the trip. Suggest good sites with advice or see any issue with the rough plan above. Literally any advice at all would be great.

Thanks

Tim
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Postby Moni » Mon Aug 16, 2010 2:00 pm

It's way late for the Matterhorn. It's out of condition even now - there has been consistent snow above 2700 to 3000 meters all summer. Check the Matterhorn page on SP - all the routes are described there. Also check the webcams - it will show you how much snow there already is.

http://www.swisswebcams.ch/english/webcam_zermatt_rothorn_%283920_zermatt%29_wetter_1010219494.html#self
Last edited by Moni on Tue Aug 17, 2010 2:15 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Postby SteveViney » Mon Aug 16, 2010 3:10 pm

Moni wrote:It's out of condition even now - there has been consistent snow above 2700 to 3000 feet all summer.

How do you know it's out of condition?

I see the freezing level is going up to 4300m this week, with rain, so hopefully some of the snow will be cleaned off the ridges. I hope so anyway as I am there in 2 weeks time
http://www.snow-forecast.com/resorts/Zermatt/6day/top

I agree though Mid Sept is when all the infastructure starts to close down
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Postby Moni » Mon Aug 16, 2010 4:35 pm

SteveViney wrote:
Moni wrote:It's out of condition even now - there has been consistent snow above 2700 to 3000 feet all summer.

How do you know it's out of condition?

I see the freezing level is going up to 4300m this week, with rain, so hopefully some of the snow will be cleaned off the ridges. I hope so anyway as I am there in 2 weeks time
http://www.snow-forecast.com/resorts/Zermatt/6day/top

I agree though Mid Sept is when all the infastructure starts to close down


Just got back from there after trying to climb for 3 weeks. We had to bail on all of planned higher elevation climbs because of snow and stick to stuff below 10000 feet. One day above freezing at 4300 does not offset many days of below freezing with snow. A close friend who is a guide has canceled most of his high elevation climbs. Look at the webcam. Yes, it can still change, but I am pessimistic, just given the weather pattern that seems to have set in.
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Postby northcave » Mon Aug 16, 2010 5:16 pm

One word... shit

Excuse the use of language but looks like it will be too late and haven't quite got the experience to be hoofing up in less than ideal conditions.

Anyway cheers for the heads up guys.
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Postby SteveViney » Mon Aug 16, 2010 5:21 pm

I'm holding out for a heatwave 8)
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Postby Luciano136 » Mon Aug 16, 2010 5:26 pm

SteveViney wrote:I'm holding out for a heatwave 8)


Even though there's a chance it gets hot down low, I think the air temp up high is starting to get cooler once you get into Sep. The sun is already losing a lot of its strength.
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Postby Moni » Tue Aug 17, 2010 2:21 am

northcave wrote:One word... shit

Excuse the use of language but looks like it will be too late and haven't quite got the experience to be hoofing up in less than ideal conditions.

Anyway cheers for the heads up guys.


Yes, it does suck - I came from much farther away to watch it be crappy. Anyway, I would just find routes that are on snow anyway and gain more experience, rather than be fixated on specifically doing the Matterhorn or similar. That's the great thing about the Alps - there's something one can do in almost any weather. We did the Fletschhorn in such abysmal weather that when we and 2 other parties reached the summit, we took a vote, whether we thought we were on the summit. Couldn't see anything and the rime was building on our clothing. This was in August, no less. The Norwegian party claimed it was the first winter ascent in summer of the Fletschhorn....
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Postby radson » Tue Aug 17, 2010 3:20 am

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Postby SteveViney » Tue Aug 17, 2010 8:18 am

http://zermatt.ch/html/bergbahnen/webca ... rhorn2.jpg
not looking so good today, very white
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Postby gabriele » Tue Aug 17, 2010 10:26 am

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Postby Fred Spicker » Tue Aug 17, 2010 1:27 pm

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Postby sneakyracer » Tue Aug 17, 2010 1:36 pm

Wow, I see a lot of snow. Snow levels seem to be around 3000M from looking at the webcams.
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