Mont Blanc Ascent

8 days
from
$3,795 USD
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Traveller ratings
4.2 / 5 from 24 reviews >
Tough +
Learn more
Trip code: 
TWM
Way to Travel:
Guided Group
Activity:
Summits
Min age:
18
Group size:
2–6

Climb Western Europe's highest peak

In the Mont Blanc massif, there is one giant which stands alone amongst a myriad of snow-capped peaks. Looming over the climbing mecca of Chamonix, the majesty of Mont Blanc has captivated climbers for centuries and calls all would-be explorers to join them atop of Western Europe’s highest peak. Attempted over three days, our itinerary is designed to give you the very best chance of reaching the summit, following either the Goûter or Cosmiques route, depending on departure date. During the expedition, the rewarding peak of Tête Blanche will also usually be climbed, teaching snow and ice techniques, building your confidence and helping with acclimatisation.

Highlights

  • Crampon and ice axe tuition
  • Three day summit attempt increases chances of success
  • Comfortable hotel accommodation in Chamonix to maximise rest and preparation

Key information

  • 3 days training/high-level trekking, 3 days summit attempt
  • 3 nights 2-star Hotel Les Campanules, 4 nights mountain huts
  • Group normally 4 to 6, plus UIAGM mountain guide/s as appropriate. 
  • Altitude maximum 4810m, average 2900m
  • Optional single supplement for the hotel nights only

What's included

  • All breakfasts, 6 lunches, 7 dinners
  • All accommodation (see accommodation section)
  • All transport and listed activities
  • Tour leader throughout
  • Flights from London (if booking incl. flights)
  • Arrival & departure transfers

What's not included

  • Travel insurance
  • Single accommodation (available on request - 3 hotel nights in Chamonix)
  • Visas or vaccinations
Call us on
1 844 227 9087
Trip Notes

Click on the button below for detailed Trip Notes containing all the particulars about this trip, including kit lists and practical information.

Note: these can vary by departure; you can check out the specific Trip Notes for your chosen adventure on the dates & prices page.

6

Pace:

Challenging: 5-6km/3-4miles an hour 

Terrain:

High altitude; including steep, rocky terrain

Day by day breakdown
Day 24.0km/2.0miles
Day 33.0km/1.0miles
Day 48.0km/4.0miles
Day 64.0km/2.0miles
Day 712.0km/7.0miles

At Exodus we believe in the power of Responsible Travel.

Every time we travel, we are part of a global movement that creates jobs, builds more sustainable societies, encourages cultural understanding and safeguards common natural and cultural heritage. To learn more about what Responsible Travel means to Exodus click here… 

Itinerary

Chamonix
to
Chamonix
  • Day 1

    Start Chamonix; equipment hire and briefing.

    Start at our hotel in Les Houches, just outside Chamonix. Those not flying with the group will rendezvous with us at the hotel in the afternoon. You can have an optional lunch here, which will be followed by a full briefing and introduction to the trip. Depending on the group members arrival time, we may have the opportunity to hire technical equipment with our local partners and enjoy some free time in Chamonix, before driving back in time for dinner. Alternatively, the equipment hire will be done on the morning of Day 2. 

    NB: You can leave any items that you don’t need for the expedition in a bag/case in the hotel as we return here on day 4.
    Hotel

    Meals included: Dinner
  • Day 2

    Walk to Albert Premier refuge (2702m); afternoon snow and ice skills training on Glacier du Tour.

    After a hearty breakfast the guide will meet us at the hotel and check that everyone is correctly equipped. Weather permitting, this is the start of the three-day circuit that is planned to give you the opportunity to acclimatize to the alpine altitudes in preparation for an attempt on Mont Blanc. We will take a short transfer up the valley to the village of Le Tour, then take a small two-stage cable-car to the Col de Balme. From here we begin our walk to the Albert Premier refuge, located at 2702m on Glacier du Tour. Here we spend the afternoon training in snow and ice climbing techniques on the surrounding glacier.

    Refuge Hut

    Meals included: Breakfast Lunch Dinner
  • Day 3

    Possible ascent of Tête Blanche (3422m) and across the Col Supérieur du Tour to Trient refuge.

    Today is a great opportunity to put yesterday's lessons into practice as we ascend from the refuge to make an attempt on Tête Blanche (3422m). The route is not too steep but most people will begin to feel the effect of altitude. From here we continue through the Col Supérieur du Tour to reach the Trient refuge in neighbouring Switzerland. There will be time to rest or relax during the afternoon.

    Maximum Altitude: 3429m
    Refuge Hut

    Meals included: Breakfast Lunch Dinner
  • Day 4

    Climb the Col du Midi des Grands (3523m), descend to village of Le Tour then back to Chamonix.

    Starting from the Trient refuge, depending on weather conditions we steadily climb either the Col du Midi des Grands (3523m) or return over the Col Supérieur du Tour. We then descend past the Albert Premier refuge where we can take a short break before continuing our descent all the way back to the village of Le Tour. From here we transfer back to our hotel in Les Houches.

    Maximum Altitude: 3235m

    NB: The itinerary for the next three days will depend on the weather on Mont Blanc, but if good we will follow the Goûter route to the summit. This decision is made by our local partners, not the Exodus office. If for any reason Mont Blanc is deemed unsafe then an alternative climb will hopefully be arranged (usually Gran Paradiso in Italy).
    Hotel

    Meals included: Breakfast Lunch Dinner
  • Day 5

    Ascend by cable-car and train to Nid d'Aigle (2372 m); steady walk to Tête Rousse refuge (3167m).

    This is the first step of the Mont Blanc ascent and it is relatively easy. Additional guides will join us this morning. Starting from Les Houches we take the Bellevue cable-car to reach the Bellevue train station where we catch the Victorian Rack railway train ('Tramway du Mont Blanc') to Nid d'Aigle (2372 m). From here we walk up a winding track offering a stunning view over the Chamonix valley. Shortly we arrive on a snow-covered area approaching the brand new Tête Rousse refuge (3167 m). We spend the whole afternoon relaxing, acclimatising, and contemplating the wonderful view of Aiguille de Bionnassay's North face.

    Maximum Altitude: 3167m
    Refuge Hut

    Meals included: Breakfast Lunch Dinner
  • Day 6

    Cross the 'Grand Couloir' then scramble on to a steep arête to arrive at Goûter refuge (3817m).

    This is our first opportunity to attend the ascent and hopefully the summit of Mont Blanc! Once it has been decided who will be roped up with who, we start our ascent to the Goûter refuge. Soon we have to cross the famous 'Grand Couloir' where there are many loose stones and possible rock fall. Extreme care must be taken here and the guides will give precise instructions. A rocky scramble across a steep arête brings us to the Goûter refuge. This section would be problematic for anyone suffering from vertigo. From the refuge, we have an outstanding panorama of the surrounding mountains.

    Note : In case bad weather is forecast for the next day, or if the current weather situation is good and the guide deems the group fit enough, after a short break in the Goûter refuge it may be possible to go directly to Mont Blanc summit this afternoon with a return to the Goûter refuge for the night. The main guide will make this decision according to the weather conditions and the level of the group.

    Maximum Altitude: 3817m
    Refuge Hut

    Meals included: Breakfast Lunch Dinner
  • Day 7

    Climb via Dôme du Goûter (4304m) and Les Bosses ridge to the summit (4810m); long descent to Chamonix.

    Waking-up at 2am, we eat a quick breakfast and start the ascent to Mont Blanc. We walk quietly and at a steady pace, with the route lit by our head torches, to reach the Dôme du Goûter (4304m). Dawn usually arrives and the sun starts to shine as we reach the Vallot emergency shelter (4362m). The summit is now within range as we start our ascent of the majestical and often exposed Les Bosses ridge before suddenly discovering the summit at 4810m. Welcome to the highest point in Western Europe! We descend by the same way with a break in the Goûter refuge, before continuing all the way into the valley at Les Houches. You shouldn't underestimate how physically challenging this day will be and the descent, in particular, can be very tough and tiring. Back in the comfort of our hotel, we enjoy a well-earned shower, dinner and presentation ceremony.

    Maximum Altitude: 4810m
    Hotel

    Meals included: Breakfast Lunch Dinner
  • Day 8

    End Chamonix.

    End at the hotel in Les Houches in the morning.

    Meals included: Breakfast
Trip Notes

Click on the button below for detailed Trip Notes containing all the particulars about this trip, including kit lists and practical information.

Note: these can vary by departure; you can check out the specific Trip Notes for your chosen adventure on the dates & prices page.

Essential Info

Visas

France

No visa required for British passport holders.

Vaccinations

France

There are no specific health risks.

Eating and Drinking

All breakfasts, 6 lunches (picnic / snack style), and 7 evening meals are included.

Lunch is not included on day 1 or day 8. Please also note that no refund will be given for meals not taken or taken other than where designated. Typical meals Breakfast: coffee, tea, hot chocolate, French bread, jam, and cereals. Lunch: sandwiches of cold meats, cheese, or sometimes tinned fish. Cakes, chocolate and energy bars. Evening meal: first course of soup or salad or charcuterie, a main course with one or two vegetables, rice or pasta, and a dessert. Beer, wine, coffee or tea, bottled water and other drinks are not included. Vegetarians: In France, hotels and restaurants are not geared up to provide separate vegetarian menus, especially smaller establishments in the mountains. Vegetarians will usually find that there is little difficulty as long as they are prepared to be reasonably flexible. Please note mountain hut meals will be more basic that the chalet meals listed above.

Weather

The main climbing season is from June to September. Our trips run during this time; when finding a window of suitable weather is most likely. Mont Blanc always attracts variable weather conditions and although we have built a degree of flexibility into this itinerary there may be disruptions. The possibility of the climb being abandoned or the route changed in case of unsuitable conditions must be accepted. In the overall interests of safety, the guides' decision will be final. Expect warm temperatures (15 to 25ºC) in the valleys, cool (5 to 15ºC) on the passes (though it will feel colder if wet and windy) and very cold (-20ºC) on the summit of Mont Blanc. Strong winds are very likely on the summit; in this case, it can feel even colder. It can and does rain and especially on the high passes it can be surprisingly cold at times.

Is this trip for you?

This trip is grade 9 - Tough +
We have planned this itinerary to include a three-day climbing / trekking section with four nights staying high in mountain huts. Much of this route is spent on glaciers and there is plenty of time for training in snow and ice climbing (ice-axe and crampon skills, ropework etc, which you do not need to be familiar with prior to the trip). We spend much of the time at around 3,000m which is essential for helping acclimatisation. The climax of the week is the summit attempt which usually takes three days.

The training is undertaken by a professional High Mountain Guide, with a ratio of one guide to six clients. Additional guides will join us on days 5, 6 & 7 for the attempt on Mont Blanc; here the ratio will be 1 guide to every 2 clients. In good weather, the ascent is not particularly technical but it is extremely arduous. To have a reasonable chance of success a high degree of fitness and stamina and some previous experience of altitude is highly recommended. Please note that you cannot achieve the required level of fitness during the week - you must arrive fit.

Please note that although the itinerary presented here is the one we intend to follow there is a high chance that variations may be necessary. Many factors can affect climbing in high mountains. Individual member's abilities vary, as does their ability to learn the technical skills needed. Adverse weather during the week may curtail training or even make the climb impossible, while previous weather conditions may have left the mountain in a difficult or dangerous condition. Any such factor may mean we have to re-arrange or curtail the programme.

Essential Information

During the early part of the week, the guides will assess your progress and skill levels. Even in good weather conditions, you will not be allowed to start the ascent unless the guides feel you have a reasonable chance of success and this will depend on local conditions, fitness and having grasped the necessary skills. There can be no guarantee that guides will be available to organise and run an alternative climb for anyone not able to undertake the ascent of Mont Blanc. This will depend entirely on the size and make up of the group. The guide's main aim will be to ensure your safety and the maximum chances of success on the summit attempt for those fit and able enough to do it. Additional private guides may be available but the cost of this is not included in the price.

What are the chances of reaching the summit?
Obviously, you need to be confident of your fitness level in order to attempt this trip, but the main reason for failure is usually weather conditions. Thankfully the Alps enjoy long periods of stable weather in the summer, with regular thunderstorms in the afternoons that our guides are careful to avoid. However, due to its high altitude, any poor weather or strong winds on Mont Blanc can make a summit attempt too dangerous. In most cases, this can be forecasted and we will attempt to offer an alternative climb in the region (often Gran Paradiso 4061m in neighbouring Italy). As a guide we would expect about 30% of our trips each summer to be affected by bad weather, making reaching the summit Mont Blanc impossible. Even with a client to guide ratio of 2:1 a situation can develop where both clients will have to turn back if the guides consider that one of the clients should not continue.

Walking and ascent conditions
During the training and the climb, you will carry your own personal equipment, water and packed lunches, plus communal equipment (first aid kit, safety items etc.) will be distributed among the group members. On the training days and ascent, most of the time you will be walking on moraine, glaciers and snowfields. None of the ascents are extremely steep (approximate average would be around a maximum of 30 - 35º) but there is some exposure and you will encounter short steeper sections involving some rock scrambling, crevasses, bergschrunds and areas of snow instability and possible rock fall.

Call us on
1 844 227 9087
Trip Notes

Click on the button below for detailed Trip Notes containing all the particulars about this trip, including kit lists and practical information.

Note: these can vary by departure; you can check out the specific Trip Notes for your chosen adventure on the dates & prices page.

Accommodation

Hotels & Mountain Huts/Refuges

You will spend 3 nights in the Hotel Les Campanules ('Bluebell'), in Les Houches, near Chamonix. This is a comfortable 2-star hotel in a good location directly opposite Mont Blanc itself. 4 nights will be spent in mountain huts and refuges, with mixed, shared dormitory style accommodation. Single rooms for the hotel nights may be available for a supplement (contact our Sales team for details)

Call us on
1 844 227 9087
Trip Notes

Click on the button below for detailed Trip Notes containing all the particulars about this trip, including kit lists and practical information.

Note: these can vary by departure; you can check out the specific Trip Notes for your chosen adventure on the dates & prices page.

Experts

Contact a member of staff who has done this trip

Call us on
1 844 227 9087
Trip Notes

Click on the button below for detailed Trip Notes containing all the particulars about this trip, including kit lists and practical information.

Note: these can vary by departure; you can check out the specific Trip Notes for your chosen adventure on the dates & prices page.

Expert Blog Entries

  • Reviewed August 2017
    Steve W

    Review of Refuges - Albert 1er, Tete Rousse, Gouter, Les Campanules

    This reviews focuses solely on the accommodations to complement the other reviews: At all refuges below, the food was excellent (!!) served in communal meals. you can purchase beverages and snacks. 1.5L of bottled water was 5, 6, and 7 Euros increasing by refuge below. Albert 1er: Beds: Separate rooms of 4 upper and 4 lower bunks Toilets: "A" Spotless. Running water in sinks, arguably potable. Paper provided. Tete Rousse: Beds: 8 upper and 8 lower bunks in room with no separation between mattresses. Sleep sheet or liner is required Toilets: "C" No running water, tough aroma, somewhat messy. Paper provided. Gouter: Beds: One large room but partitioned into smaller rooms and each bunk has a slight privacy panel (2 feet wide) at head and feet. Toilets: B+ - no running water but clean and neat. Paper provided. Les Campanules: Obviously held to a higher standard than the refuges! Even-numbered rooms have a fabulous mountain view, although the rooms are somewhat simple, with multiple beds, and small shower and toilet areas. Odd-numbered rooms have a limited pine tree view but much more luxurious facilities, although no soaking tub apres hike! If you have an early departure, be sure to settle bill prior evening as no one is available before 7:30am.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    ...
  • Reviewed August 2017
    Mark Green

    Mont Blanc Ascent

    After much hard work in preparing my 60 year old body for this trip I was slightly disappointed that we were unable to tackle Mont Blanc due to high winds and poor visibility. However we were lucky enough to have 2 opportunities to tackle the Gran Paradiso summit in neighbouring Italy which we all managed on the second attempt.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    After a failed first attempt climbing Gran Paradiso due to high winds and poor visibility, having another opportunity to attempt the summit the following day in somewhat iffy and very cold weather conditions. Our small group of 4 plus guides summitted just as the thick clouds that we had been ascending through parted just at the right moment to reveal the drama of the magnificent landscape all around us. Only then did we witness how exposed we were with terrifying drops below! This was not Mont Blanc but it was still a big mountain day with some 1350m ascent (mostly on ice), and around 2100m cumulative descent.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    The famous 65 years young Bernard Muller (look him up) is very experienced and therefore despite the sometimes questionable weather we felt safe in his capable care. Many people that we met em route appeared to know and respect this man and despite his charming idiosyncrasies he is much fun to be with.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    We did not attempt to summit Mont Blanc due to the weather but please do not underestimate how fit and conditioned you need to be to undertake the initial training on glaciers then an ascent of an alpine peak. It's hard work whoever you are and you need to bring along with you a good deal of courage and commitment to get through this.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    With adequate training, preparation and the right attitude this is about as much fun and sustained effort that you can have on your 2 legs. And oh yes..... dont forget to bring along a good sense of humour and some very warm gloves!
  • Reviewed August 2017
    Mark Green

    Mont Blanc Ascent

    After much hard work in preparing my 60 year old body for this trip I was slightly disappointed that we were unable to tackle Mont Blanc due to high winds and poor visibility. However we were lucky enough to have 2 opportunities to tackle the Gran Paradiso summit in neighbouring Italy which we all managed on the second attempt.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    After a failed first attempt climbing Gran Paradiso due to high winds and poor visibility, having another opportunity to attempt the summit the following day in somewhat iffy and very cold weather conditions. Our small group of 4 plus guides summitted just as the thick clouds that we had been ascending through parted just at the right moment to reveal the drama of the magnificent landscape all around us. Only then did we witness how exposed we were with terrifying drops below! This was not Mont Blanc but it was still a big mountain day with some 1350m ascent (mostly on ice), and around 2100m cumulative descent.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    The famous 65 years young Bernard Muller (look him up) is very experienced and therefore despite the sometimes questionable weather we felt safe in his capable care. Many people that we met em route appeared to know and respect this man and despite his charming idiosyncrasies he is much fun to be with.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    We did not attempt to summit Mont Blanc due to the weather but please do not underestimate how fit and conditioned you need to be to undertake the initial training on glaciers then an ascent of an alpine peak. It's hard work whoever you are and you need to bring along with you a good deal of courage and commitment to get through this.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    With adequate training, preparation and the right attitude this is about as much fun and sustained effort that you can have on your 2 legs. And oh yes..... dont forget to bring along a good sense of humour and some very warm gloves!
  • Reviewed July 2016
    David Sheppard

    Crikey that was hard

    An amazing trip but oh so hard. I have climbed Kili but this was on another level entirely. Fantastic weather everyday although that made the ascent very hard especially as we climbed to the summit from midday

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    All 6 of the group reaching the summit together

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Patrick was Very good and filled you with confidence. We were lucky enough to be joined by the legendary Bernard for the last 3 days

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Train very hard for this
  • Reviewed June 2015
    Stuart Aberdeen

    Mont Blanc Ascent

    Great trip with a great team. Tough but we all made it. I would definitely recommend it but don't underestimate the challenge and the altitude .

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Eventually reaching the Summit and feeling on top of the world.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Bernard, our leader is a well known and respected mountaineer and we had total faith in him and his decision-making. Although his English wasn't always completely clear he was humorous and totally at ease which made us feel comfortable and reassured.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    It's really important to be fit and to have endurance as the mountain can be unforgiving. Working as a member of a team is crucial as you can support each other's strengths and weaknesses.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    Take time to enjoy the beauty of the mountains around you. The Alps are fantastic and for the English, only on our doorstep !
  • Reviewed October 2013
    Anonymous

    MONT BLANC ASCENT

    For a 65 year old like myself it was tough and fully desrving of its E category. It made trekking to Everest Base camp feel like a walk in the park.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Summitting Mont Blanc on what the guides told us was the best day of the season weather wise. We could even se Lake Geneva.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Our leader over the first 3 days trained us in the use of ice axes, crampons etc but made no concessions for my age and told me he thought I wouldn't make the summit. On the actual ascent our new guide was excellent and said if I was determined to do it and took it slowly I had a chance of doing it. He was a gem.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    It really justifies its E grading. If you are younger and fit it shouldn't be a problem. If you are older be aware of what you are taking on.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    Why do people run marathons? Why do people row single handed acroos the Atalntic etc. They all want to challenge themselves and Mont Blanc is a real challenge.
  • Reviewed August 2013
    Anonymous

    MONT BLANC ASCENT

    Excellent holiday spoilt by travel to and from Switzerland and lack of assistance from Exodus with Swiss Air problems.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    All the time spent in the mountains with a great group of likeminded fellow travellers and the excellent guides was fantastic. A good introduction to alpinism. The best conditions possible for the summit were a real bonus. The following day no one was going up to the summit as the cloud was down and the wind was up. Luckily we were heading down for the best shower in the world and a nice cold beer.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    A real alpinist who lives and breathes for the mountains.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Don't fly with Swiss Air.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    The outward flight was cancelled and no help was forthcomming from Exodus. I eventually got to Geneva via Zurich several hours or more late. On the return journey after boarding the plane I was told I would have to get off as I didn't have a reservation. How odd after Swiss Air had given me a boarding card and checked my baggage onto the flight. After 10 minutes of discussion I was allowed to stay on the plane and return home.
  • Reviewed July 2013
    Tim Meeks

    Disappointed

    The group that I was in arrived in Chamonix on 23 July 2015. We were told that as of 17 July 2015 the Company of Guides - Saint Gervais (basically the people who manage and look after the Mountain) had suspended any walking / climbing on Mont Blanc for an indefinite period. This was due to several weeks of unseasonably high temperatures melting the ice further up the mountain, so releasing rocks and causing rock fall. On the first night we were told that there was '99%' likelihood that the Gouter Route would remain closed for the duration of the trip. I am disappointed that I was not told in advance of the booking as I have a flexible work environment allowing me to move holidays. Exodus should have informed me and the rest of the group in advance providing us with the option or re-booking which in the very least would have saved approx £500 of the add on costs (UK airport parking, equipment hire, lift passes, etc.) I have done a number of trips with Exodus and never had a problem in the past, but to allow the group to fly out on a 'Mont Blanc Ascent' after months of preparation and training, when they knew the mountain was closed is very disappointing.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Sunrise in the mountains

    What did you think of your group leader?

    .

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    .

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    .

    Reply from Exodus

    Reply from Exodus

    We realise that it must have been extremely disappointing for Tim and the rest of the group to find out that on the local authorities had closed the Gouter Route for safety reasons due to concerns about melting snow dislodging rocks. It is extremely rare for the mountain to be closed for a prolonged period of time and given the information at our disposal before this group left the UK and that we could not have reasonably known for how long the mountain would remain closed, we did not contact people travelling to Chamonix as we felt it was reasonable to assume that the weather could change at any point. We do appreciate that this must have been hugely disappointing, but the group instead climbed Gran Paradiso which we hope they enjoyed.

    Olly Pemberton - Trip Manager for the Mont Blanc region

  • Reviewed July 2013
    Anonymous

    MONT BLANC ASCENT

    A fabulous holiday. Excellent guides and superb weather. The guides were professional, supportive and extremely helpful. I owe my reaching the summit to Bernard. He was so patient with me when I couldn't find the energy to carry on. The holiday exceeded expectations indeed. A fantastic holiday highly recommended.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Reachign the summit

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Bernard was a fantastic leader. I really enjoyed the climb walking with him

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Make sure you take ear plugs. The dormitories are shared and there are some high volume snorers!!!!

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    A fabulous trip that is highly recommended. I thoroughly enjoyed it.
  • Reviewed January 2013
    Anonymous

    MONT BLANC ASCENT

    Massive disappoint is the best way to sum up this trip. In selecting Exodus ahead of other companies I thought I’d made a wise choice, little did I realise what awaited me in Chamonix! Put simply there was a woeful lack of organisation. The worst example of this was the failure to secure places in the Gouter refuge ahead of the group’s summit attempt. I consider myself to be pretty fit but to do Gouter route without being able to stop at the Gouter refuge was beyond me. What made me very annoyed is that like everyone else in the group I’d booked the trip months in advance thereby granting ample time to secure the necessary accommodation.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    The climb from the Albert Premier to the Trient refuge.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    The guide provided to us was astonishingly unsuited to the role of leading a group of novice climbers. Indeed it would not be an exaggeration to state that he considered us to be little more than an inconvenience to be tolerated. Of his numerous short comings the most serious was his failure to provide the sort of snow and ice climbing training required to climb Mont Blanc safely. Incredibly he even refused to show the group how to use their ice axes when asked directly.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    During the summit attempt you will be moving over steep ground so bear in mind that if you get the same guide our group did there is a possibility that you will be doing so without having received training in how to use your ice axe and crampons. I therefore recommend that you get some snow and ice climbing experience before you book this trip.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    It’s not worth paying the single room supplement as Exodus’ partners in Chamonix don’t necessarily provide you with a single room.

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