OverviewThis is the easiest way up to Sengchuppa - otherwise it wouldn't be called normal route of course. It is a scenic route: Fletschhorn in the south, the Rhone valley and Bernese Oberland in the north and the Mischabel range in the west. This is a quite normal route - Sengchuppa is not a popular mountain. The only suitable accomodation is the Fletschhorn bivoauc at 3030m/10100feet with 6 people, what also keeps the herdes away. Many climbers in the Fletschhorn bivouac will not also come for Sengchuppa, but also for the traverse from Sengchuppa to it's neighbour: Fletschhorn. This route is also nice when bad weather does not permit you something else. It is an adventure to walk to the Fletschhorn bivouac, the last 700-800 meters there is no path. This makes it a bit a mysteric surrounding. Exciting to do in foggy weather, don't forget your compas!
The summit of Sengchuppa looks like a snow dome from the Fletschhorn bivouac/hut, but in summer some low rocks markes the real high point.
Getting ThereThe normal route is approached from the Saas valley. You start either from Saas Balen or Gspon, which can be reached by cable car fron Stalden. You can reach both Stalden and Saas Balen by car. First drive to Visp in the Rhone valley (in Wallis/Valais), than enter the valley towards Zermatt. Stalden is on the split of the Saas and Zermatt valleys, Saas Balen is in the Saas valley (logically).
Route DescriptionFrom the starting place - Saas Baalen or Gspon - you have to walk to the Mattwaldalpa (2300m, 7650 feet), a large flat area of green grass. From there head up in the eastward direction into the broad valley in front of you. There's no path -you have to find your own way! There are also not much stonemans or that kind of things. The Fletschhorn bivouac at 3030m (10100 feet) is only to be seen when you're almost there. The place of the bivouac can be recognized by a large stoneman. This bivouac is the starting point for climbing Sengchuppa the next day. From the bivouac you head on the easy north-west glacier slopes. At 3300m - 11000feet you turn towards the east towards the col between Sengchuppa and Gamserchopf. Than turn towards the south/southwest direction and climb the snow/ice slope/ridge towards the summit (30/35 degrees).
Gradation of the normal route is F (French) or L (German). Up to 30/35 degrees snow/ice. The Fletschhorn bivouac contains about 10 places - most times this is enough. Orientation equipment needed because there is no path towards the Fletschhorn bivouac, it can be hard to find it if you haven't been there before! This climb takes 2 days: one day to the bivouac, one day to the summit and down to the valley.
-glacier rescue equipment (there are some crevasses)
-windprooth clothing, crampon-proof shoes etc.