This gorgeous orange granite peak is a Chamonix classic which is usually climbed in a traverse of both the Grepon and the Grand Charmoz. The peak was first climbed in 1881 by Mummery, Burgener, and Venetz. Don't be fooled by its seemingly casual AD- (with sustained 5.8 rock) grade of the traverse - if you are not careful, time can escape you.
In Chamonix, take the Aiguille du Midi lift up to the Plan d'Aiguille level and then take the trail heading to the left. Once at the bottom of the Nantillon glacier, take appropriate precautions (depending on conditions) and ascend the glacier to the start of your chosen route. Another approach is possible from the Mer de Glace side - see local maps for more details.
Most ascents are from April-September/October depending on conditions. During the approach be wary of conditions on the Nantillons glacier.
Two choices, bivy up on the Plan d'Aiguille, or take the first tram up, but you'd better be fast. In the Valley: Camping Close to the train station: Grass, no frills. Like a United Nations of climbers spot: Les Arolles T: +33 (0)4 50 53 14 30 F: +33 (0)4 50 53 14 30 Hostel/Gite situation on west end of town (with built-in pub) : (Mainly English speaking crowd) Run by Irishman from Wessex: Le Vagabond 365, av Ravanel le Rouge 74400 Chamonix T: +33 (0)4 50 53 15 43 F: +33 (0)4 50 53 15 43 www.gitevagabond.com Hostel/Gite 500m east of Gare SNCF (Train station) (Mainly continental european crowd): Le Chamoniard Volant 45 route de la Frasse 74400 Chamonix T: +33 (0)4 50 53 14 09 F: +33 (0)4 50 53 23 25 www.chamoniard.com
Check with the Office du Haute Montagne by the church downtown for the latest route beta, etc. For online weather reports go to: www.chamonix.net and click on weather.