Went with a group of 14 Icelanders. After acclimatisation trips on La Tresenta and Grand Paradiso in Italy we went back to France and arrived at the Cosmiques hut around 5pm on July 16th.
After trying to sleep from 9pm-01am we got up, ate "breakfast" in a hurry (dry bread with jam + tea) we were ready go to at 1:30am.
The trip started in good weather, light wind and we could see the stars. Going up du Tacul was wonderful, you could see the stream of headlights coming from the hut and snaking slowly up the mountain. After walking beneath big seracs we finally cleared Mont Blanc du Tacul on were on our way to Mont Maudit.
We went up Mont Maudit, our guide sped up and fixed a rope for us to ascend with. I was completely breathless when I sat on the crest of Mont Maudit after negotiating the steep slope. Our guide was for some reason in such a hurry that we were pretty tired at that point. On the crest we found a large piece of human excrement, don't know why people don't bother to at least bury the damn thing.
Then it was onto the final slope. It was deceptively long and the wind was pretty strong at this point and snow blowing all over the place. The guides were actually thinking about turning back at this point, but our group leader chose rightly to go on.
We summited Mont Blanc before 9am. Just had time to enjoy the view for a short while because our guide was anxious to get down quickly because the weather was turning. We got less then 10 minutes on top and there were only 6 people on the summit when we got there. The view was beautiful but I did not feel any joy at that moment because of how tired I was. Fortunately I did not experience any sort of high altitude sickness.
We went down the beginning of the Gouter route and stopped for half an hour or so in the Ref. Vallot bivyhut. By the time we started descending the Grands Mulets route we were completely engulfed in clouds and it was impossible to see where the snow ended and the clouds started. It took a long time to descend the Grands Mulets route because of crevasses. It was also a difficult descent because the snow was very soft and we sank up to our knees and thighs in every step.
We stopped for a short while in the Grands Mulets hut. I climbed up the rock to the hut to buy something to drink.
Short while later we continued the descent and finally arrived to the Plan de l'Aguille cable car station in thick fog and rain just before 5pm.
The group was extremely happy, 12 of us made the summit. Two of the group turned around on Mont Maudit and went back to the Cosmiques hut.
Great experience, I would like to go there again someday so I can spend more time on the summit. :)
You can see pictures from the whole trip here:
It includes La Tresenta and Grand Paradiso in Italy.
From Tete Rouse, to the summit, back down to Chamonix in one long, exhausting, 14 hour day. Worth it though.
7 of our party of 8 to the top. Claire Rechatin, Delphine Renaudin, Paul Rechatin, Pierre Rechatin, Alexandre Bolze, Ivan Renaudin, Pascal Rechatin.Perfect conditions we stayed a long time on the top to enjoy !. A dream of a descent on the Arete des bosses overall surprisingly uncrowded for a August day.
One mountain sick stayed at the Refuge des Cosmiques this will be for next time for Thomas.
This was the first time for Delphine, Ivan, Pierre, Paul and Alexandre, second time for Claire and 12th time for me.I Had not been there for several years.
The Refuge des Cosmiques is really very nice and people extremely welcoming and professional...what a difference with several other huts in the Mt Blanc massif on the french side!
This year (2008) there were pretty dangerous crevasses on the Mt Blanc du Tacul climb. Really requires attention especially by night.
The Mont Maudit Bergshrund/rimaye couloir is the only place where we found some ice, rest of the route was in perfectly good snow. Two fixed ropes have been left in place by mountain guides there which is quite convenient.
Very good conditions on the arete des bosses and all the way down to the Aiguille du Gouter with very few crevasses.
The face and couloir de l'Aiguille du Gouter are becoming more and more dangerous...Helmet highly recommended there are really bad rock falls which are not anymore just started by careless climbers near the Refuge de l'Aiguille du Gouter but are initiated it seems as a result of accelerated warming of the mountain. It is advisable to stay on the slightly protruding rocky ridge in the middle of the face as opposed to going to the right or to the left despite several well marked trails as the sides are much more exposed to rock falls.
Summited via the Gouter route. Left at midnight and was able to see the sun rise on the summit. beautiful!
Great weather, beautiful views. My first 4000 peak :)
I was trying 3Mounts route at end of April 2008, from Cosmiques Hut. Very strong wind at 4000m, lot of snow and avalanches from Tacul. So, we (i and my friend) was reached only 3800-3900 on Tacul face in one sunshine day (29 April) and was planning another attempt at 30th April, but again - bad weather, bad weather. No success.
I'll try again next time :)
I vs MontBlanc 1:1
I climbed Mont Blanc after a horrible night spent in a 2 person tent with 3 other people next to the Gouter Hut. Reaching Vallot struggling with 80km/h winds, we waited some time in the hut, after which 2 of us continued to the summit. Visibility was bad, we didn't see anything it was only because of the GPS that we knew we actually reached the summit.
Descent from Grands Mulets and la Jonction.
First attempt unsuccessful. we started on foot from the village of Chamonix. First night on the glacier below the Refuge du Requin, Second night below Refuge des Cosmiques, Summit day we encountered snow storm with very poor visibility and were forced to retreat...We made it up to about 14,000ft. We came down the tram at Aiguille du Midi.
After a few days bad weather in Chamonix we got some good weather. Rain had washed out the train so we started hiking from the top of the Bellevue chair lift. We could not confirm a spot in either the Tête Rousse or Gouter hut so we brought along bivy gear. We stopped at the Tête Rousse hut and were promised at least a floor spot. There was some talk in our group of continuing on to the Gouter hut but a climber was killed crossing the grand couloir at lunch (falling rock) so we hung tight. Left Tête Rousse at 2:00am, reached the summit before 7:00am, back in Chamonix for burger's at 4:00pm.
This mountain is a total mad house and not safe during peak season due to the sheer number of climbers.
We started out climbing from the Cosmiques hut at 2AM and finally made it to the summit with cold by clear weather. The climb was crowded and long but the views were beautiful.
This is my first Alpine experience. I was climbing solo, without guide and without rope. Start from Tete Rousse at 7:00, Gouter hut at 10:00, Vallot Hut in 15:00 but i was very tired for continue. So, i slept in Vallot, alone. and next morning i start from Vallot at 8:00 and reach the summit at 11:00. Bad weather above 4300, strong wind and snow dust ...
Started at Nid d`Aigle at 10 a.m.- ascended to Aiguille de Gouter - left my stuff and headed to the summit in the evening 5.30 p.m. - made a bivy at Aiguille de Gouter and descended to Nid d`Aigle next morning
After a sudden change in weather a minor badweather front stroke the mountain during the night so the 02AM wake up call was called off. However, eventually the heavy winds diminished and at breakfast some parties made ready for summit attempt at 0900AM. I soloed and reached the summit at 1215PM. I was all alone over the Bosse-ridges. What a feeling! After that rather late summit, I had a descent of 3.800 altitude meters all the way down to Les Houches. (Tramway du MB out of order due rockfall.)
No problem really to do it unroped all the way to the summit. There was only one open crevasse well above the Vallot hut which could be overcome with a big step. The weather was outstanding. Feeling really lucky.
Perfect weather. The amount of snow on the mountain made the ascent spectacular, especially the awkward ascent of the Grand Couloir. The route via Mont Maudit was inaccessible due to the amount of snow.
Started hiking from town in beautiful weather. When we got up to the col the next day, we were in whiteout conditions and terrible winds that turned us around. No worries, I don't mind taking another trip there to try again!
my first 4000m peak:)) we've made it ina a team of five, great weather, great experience
summit in perfect weather - the other routes on the massif were still innaccessible
Gouter route in perfect weather.
Once back down, lots of French beer.