Aiguille Verte

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Haute Savoie (Mont Blanc), France, Europe
13523 ft / 4122 m
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Aiguille Verte
Created On: Mar 23, 2001
Last Edited On: Oct 10, 2017


West Side of Aiguille Verte - Photo by om

In memory of
Rahel Maria Liu, the former maintainer of this page. Rahel died on the Innominata Spur to Mont Blanc in a snowstorm on August 24th, 2004.

Panoramic ViewGood ViewAiguille Verte - Géant GlacierPanoramaAiguille Verte

Aiguille Verte - a beautiful and prominent mountain of the Mont Blanc Range

    The Aiguille Verte (4122 m) is one of the most prominent mountains of the Mont Blanc range. It is very visible from Argentière.

    Besides Mont Blanc and Grandes Jorasses, Aiguille Verte is one of the most beautiful mountains of the Mont Blanc Massif - because of the huge rigdes.

    Eberlein calls it even the most beautiful mountain of the Alps at all (Eberlein, 357).

South Side of Aiguille Verte - Photo by gabriele

    Besides the famous couloirs (NE and NW), the big ridges are interesting for climbers. The most beautiful route is probably the traverse Sans Nom - Jardin Ridge.

    Even the Moine Ridge (SW ridge) is not easy. Therefore the Aiguille Verte is the most difficult 4000 m peak of the Alps.

Historical Notes
    First ascent: E. Whymper with Ch. Almer and F. Biner on 29. June 1865.

Routes Overview

* Panoramic View of Aiguille Verte from the Rochefort Ridge - 2002 (Photo by Rahel Maria Liu)

Whymper Couloir:

    48° in the average, till 55°, 530 hm, AD, 3-6 h (Eberlein, p. 357f.)

              * Photos by filova - theboss - albertolazza - pablo

              RouteWhymperAscentSummitRSummitSummit RSkiingWhymperR

Moine Ridge (South-West Ridge):
    III and II, AD, 500 hm, 6-7 h (Eberlein, p. 359f.)

Couloir en Y (South-West Face):
    IV, mostly easier, ice about 50°, D, 700 hm, 6 h (Eberlein, p.360)

Sans Nom Ridge:
    IV+ (1passage), mostly IV and III, D+, 950 hm, 10-15 h (Eberlein, p. 361)

Nant Blank Flank (Charletroute 1935):
    IV, mostly III, mixed, ice till 58°, average 52°, D+, 900 hm (face), 7-12 h (Eberlein, 363)

Grands Montet Ridge:
    IV+, mostly III and IV, ice till 50°, D, 900 hm (ridge), 10-12 h from Col des Grands Montets (Eberlein, p. 364)

North-East Face:
    Cordier Couloir:
    55° average, D+, 1000 hm, 7-10 h (Eberlein, p. 367)

Contamine Route:
    V, mostly IV, ice till 50°, TD-, alltogether 1050 hm (face), 600 hm rock climbing and mixed, 450 hm ice, 8-10 h (Eberlein, p. 367)

Couloir Couturier:
    55° at 300 m, average: 49°, D-, 900 hm (face), 4-8 h (Eberlein, p. 369)

              * Photos by kabernicola - Nader1 - rasto krizan - [X]Bird

              RouteCouturierSkiing downHutSunset

Jardin Ridge (E ridge):
    IV (2 passages), mostly III and II, D-, 450 hm till Aig. Jardin; from here 300 hm, 8-10 h (Eberlein, p. 371)

Traverse Aiguille du Dru - Aiguille Verte:
    IV+, mostly IV and III, D+, 2 days (Eberlein, p. 372)

              * Photos by SP members - Aiguille Verte - Couloir Whymper - Couloir Couturier
              Rahel Maria Liu, Chamonix Man, Jeroen Vels, TodoVertical, Jurgen Mesman and fogliczech

* Climber's Logs

Getting There

* Panoramic View of Aiguille Verte (Photo by pvangeenen)

Sillhouette of the Drus - Aiguille Verte - Les Droites and Les Courtes

To the Aiguille Verte

    You can come from the Ref. d'Argentiere.
    You can come from the Ref. de Couvercle.

To the Ref. d'Argentiere

    In order to reach the hut, you have 3 possibilities:

    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 morainecrest till about 2250 m. 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, then via a marked way which you follow until you reach the upper end of the ice break. You climb the glacier in SE direction and reach over the moraine the hut.

    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 1750 m and reach the way of the middle station of the cable car (2 h). Now, you need 3 h to the hut.

    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 in ENE direction on the western side along P. 3000 to P. 2754 m. You go down in south-eastern direction of the glacier d'Argentière, which you reach above the ice break. From here in 2 h to the hut.

    You reach Argentière by train (from Martigny/CH or Geneva or Annecy - TGV to St. Gervais), bus (from Annecy, Geneva, Grenoble, Courmayeur, Aoste and Turin) or car from Geneva or Martigny (Switzerland) via Vallorcine and the Col des Montets.

To the Ref. de Couvercle

    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 in direction of 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 in SE direction of Les Moulins. Now you do not follow the marking signs to the moraines but continue in S and then E direction of 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 the hut via a new climbing track below the Flammes de Pierre and the ends of the Aig. du Moine to the Ref. du Couvercle. But because of ice avalanches, some passages of this route have become very dangerous. You have to ask for the actual conditions. 3,5 h from Montenvers to Couvercle.

    * Aiguille Verte - Elijah Walton 1868 (Photo from om)

    Aiguille Verte

    To Montenvers:

    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.

    You reach Chamonix by train (from Martigny/CH or Geneva or Annecy - TGV to St. Gervais), bus (from Annecy, Geneva, Grenoble, Courmayeur, Aoste and Turin) or car from Geneva or Martigny (Switzerland) via Vallorcine, the Col des Montets and Argentière.

* Ascent - Photo from ericvola, Mer de Glace - Photo from om, Mont Blanc Massif - Photo from Rahel Maria Liu, cred

Ascent 1790
Mer de Glace
Mont Blanc Massif

You reach the Chamonix Valley by train:
    From Martigny (Switzerland) via Vallorcine.

    From Geneva (airport) via Anncey (TGV till here) and St. Gervais.

You reach the Chamonix Valley by bus:
    From/via Annecy, Geneva, Grenoble, Courmayeur, Aoste and Turin

You reach the Chamonix Valley by car:
    From Geneva (from the NW) on the A40 till St. Gervais and from here on the N205.

    From Martigny (from the NE, Switzerland) via Vallorcine and the Col des Montets on the road no. N506.

You reach the Val Ferret (Italy) by bus or car:
    From Chamonix through the Mont Blanc Tunnel from the NW.

    From Torino (from the SE) on the A5 via Villeneuve.

Mountain Huts

* View of Aiguille Verte - Aiguille de Triolet - Grandes Jorasses - Aig. de Rochefort - Dent du Géant (Photo by Rahel Maria Liu)

Refuge d'Argentière

Refuge d'Argentière is a modern big hut with a view directly to the north faces on the opposite side: from Aiguille Verte to Mont Dolent. It is situated near
the corner where the Glacier d'Argentière and the Glacier des Améthystes come together.

      Phone: 33 (0)4 50 53 16 92 - Email:
      Guarded: From the end of June to mid-September
      Places number: 150

      You reach the Refuge d'Argentière:

      from Croix de Lognan (1970 m) in 3 - 3,5 h, to Croix de Lognan with cable car from Argentière

      on foot from Argentière in 5 h

      from Aiguille des Grands Montets (summit station of the cable car from Argentière) in 2 h

Refuge du Couvercle (2687 m)

Refuge du Couvercle is situated very nicely in the region of the Aiguille du Moine. It is visited frequently. Instead of the old hut, a new big house was built in 1952.

      Tél : 33 (0)4 50 53 16 94

      Guarded from mid-June to mid-September

      Places number: 120

      You reach the Refuge du Couvercle:

      from Montenvers in 3,5 h via moraines

      via the Balcon du Mer de Glace in 3,5 h


* Aiguille Verte - Photos by Jonathan Griffith, Antonio Giani, Jurgen Mesman, charles and om

SunsetSouth SideNorth SideEast SideWest Side



    Phone: 0033/450 53 1298 - 0033/8 36 35 35 35
    0033/450530702 (Train station Chamonix)
    Phone of the Montenvers-train: ++33(0)450/531254
    Ticket shop

    Phone: 0033/450 53 0555 - 0033/450 53 0115



* Aiguille Verte - majestic and beautiful ( Photos by Andreas Fischer)


* Panoramic View of Aiguille Verte - Photo by Hiltrud Liu

Institut Géographique National
    1:25000 no. 3630 OT Chamonix - Massif du Mont Blanc

Instituto Geografico Centrale
    1:25000 no. 165107 IGC Monte Bianco

* Google Earth Mont Blanc Area - Photo from Antonio Giani
Google Earth  Monte Bianco Sector Mont Blanc Area

    Hartmut Eberlein, Mont-Blanc-Gruppe. Gebietsführer für Bergsteiger und Kletterer, 2000 or 2012,

    Helmut Dumler/Willi P. Burkhardt, The High Mountains of the Alps.

    Gaston Rébuffat: The Mont Blanc Massif. The 100 Finest Routes. London 1996. ISBN 1-898573-03-4.

    Erich Vanis, Im steilen Eis. 80 Eiswände in den Alpen. Munich et al. 1980. ISBN 3-405-12158-2.

    Damilano/Perroux, Neige, Glace Et Mixte: Mont Blanc. Editions Ice 1996. ISBN 2950986803.

    Laroche/Lelong: Die Gipfel des Montblanc. Munich 1999. ISBN 3-405-15693-9.

    Helmut Dumler/Willi P. Burkhardt, Viertausender der Alpen. 11th ed. Munich 1998. ISBN 3-7633-7427-2.

    Lindsay Griffin, Mont Blanc Massif, Vol. 2 - Published Alpine Club (2002). ISBN 0-900523-58-1.

    Rother Skitourenführer - Hartmut Eberlein, Mont Blanc (S. 97)

Link MountainArea

* View of Les Drus and Aiguille Verte - Photo by allari

Sillara summit ridge
Sun rays after a storm - just before sunset

Panorama 1

Panorama 2

Aiguille Verte at

Mountain Guide Adventure - France

Guide Alpine - Courmayeur - Italy

* Panorama Aiguille Verte - Aiguille de Triolet - Rochefort Ridge - Grand Capucin - Mont Blanc du Tacul and Mont Blanc (Photo by Hiltrud Liu)

Google Map

* Google Map Mont Blanc Area

* Google Map - Photo from markhallam

Monte Rosa

* Google Map - Mont Blanc Area

Aiguille Verte

435 Images 18 Climber's Log Entries 18 Comments 0 Additions & Corrections


2 Routes 3 Trip Reports 5 Albums 2 Huts & Campgrounds


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