The Haute Cime is the highest peak of an impressive looking mountain chain called Dents du Midi, close to Lac Leman (Lake of Geneva). The peak is famous for its gorgeous view. Since there are no higher peaks within approx. 30km you get to see a lot of the swiss Jura, Mont Blanc, Grand Jorasses, Matterhorn, Aiguille Verte, which are all 30-70km close. Approximately 50 summit attempty a day during good weather, most of them successfull since the summit isn't hard to climb, it's just exhaustingly steep. The easiest route leads to the summit from the south and follows the south ridge for the top 600m.
Find Lausanne in Switzerland, either by train, plane or car. Then go south in the Rhone valley to Monthey. Leave the valley here and go to Champéry in the Val d'Illez. You can go to Champéry by train or car. The trail starts at Grand Paradis (1056m), there is a camp ground as well as a huge parking lot.
Get any tourist information (lodging, camping, directions etc.) from the Champéry web site
no fees required at all
When To Climb
Best time to clime the Haute Cime is June to September, in July and August the summit is snow and ice free. Since the inclination of the top 600m is 40-60°, climbing in any other month will be much harder due to the very steep ice and firn.
You can place tents on the Grand Paradis campground (my tent was situated only 3m from the trailhead ;-) ). If you want to make the tour in 2 days I suggest to stay at the Susanfe refuge (Cabane de Susanfe) at 2102m. The refuge has 100 "beds" and belongs to the swiss alpine club (SAC). I have seen tents in the vincinity of the refuge between the rocks, but I don't recommend that since the Susanfe Valley has a very beautiful and fragile flora with rare alpine plants.
You can call +33 / 24 479 1646 (Cabane de Susanfe, a refuge at 2102m, open from June to Sept.) for mountain conditions, otherwise call the swiss weather service or the Champéry tourist information.
noah - Mar 27, 2003 11:55 pm - Hasn't votedUntitled Comment
Auberge de Salanfe
0041 (0) 27 761 1438
open early june till first week in october
100 beds dorm, 20 private... has showers
Cabane de Susanfe
0041 (0)24 479 1646
open end of june till first week october
80 beds dorm
There is a small bivy box on the east side of Col de Susanfe.
noah - Mar 28, 2003 12:02 am - Hasn't votedUntitled Comment
I am pretty sure that the international code should be +41 (the swiss code... not +33 the french code) because 1 it is in switzerland and 2 it is a swiss formed phone number.
Keyser Soze - Jul 3, 2003 3:52 am - Hasn't votedUntitled Comment
Haute Cime is extremely popular during the French and Swiss summer holidays (July-mid August). Expect to share the pleasant view with lots of other hikers on clear days.