The Haute Route is certainly the most famous glacier trip of the Alps. Inaugurated in 1903 by members of the Compagnie des Guides de Chamonix, it connects the two historic capitals of mountaineering with passes over 3000m and a summit at 3800m. The exceptional beauty of the landscapes crossed, makes it an essential objective. Despite its notoriety, the Haute Route is a serious glacier trip requiring a good physical form.
This trip will take you to some of the most spectacular places in the Alps: from the Glacier du Tour to the foot of the Matterhorn: it is a guaranteed change of scenery.
Why this trip in 7 days ?
The Haute Route, via our itinerary, is traditionally completed in six days; Groups are go down to Zermatt directly, without passing a night in the Schonbiel hut. Consequently, the last day is very long and can be particularly exhausting regarding the glacier conditions.
We propose you to make the route more consistent and enjoy the ambiance of the Haute Route longer.
Day 1: From Chamonix to Albert 1er hut
Rendez-vous at 10.00am at the Compagnie des Guides de Chamonix (190, place de l’église). Your guide will check your equipment & give you food supplies. Then, with your car or by public free bus, rendez-vous at Le Tour village (1450m / 4757ft). We ride the gondola & the chair lift to Col de Balme (2180m / 7152ft). We start walking on a pleasant path and reach the moraine of Glacier du tour. After a short break to the Albert 1er hut (2702 / 8864ftm), we go down on the glacier to learn the techniques for moving across icy terrain. Night in Albert 1er hut.
Vertical ascent: 600m / 1968ft
Day 2: From Albert 1er to Mauvoisin
Early in the morning, we start our glacier adventure on the Glacier du Tour. We go up to the Col Supérieur du Tour (3289m/10790ft) and enter in Switzerland trough the Glacier du Trient. We continue on a balcony path to take the lift of la Breya (2200m/7217ft). We arrive in Champex (1500m /4921ft). 1 hour of taxi transfer to reach Mauvoisin (1850m/6069ft). Night in hotel.
Vertical ascent: 714m/2342ft - Vertical descent: 1200m/3937ft
Day 3: From Mauvoisin to Cabane des Dix
Early in the morning, the taxi driver transfer the group to Cabane de Chanrion (2462m/8077ft): we start a beautiful succession of several passes in a wilderness area: Cols du Tsofeiret (2642m/8667ft), Lire Rose (3065m/10055ft), Mont Rouge (3326m /10912ft) and finally Le Cheilon (3 237m/10620ft). We traverse the Cheilon glacier to reach the Cabane des Dix (2928m/9606ft).
Vertical ascent: 911m/2988ft - Vertical descent: 509m / 1669ft
Day 4 : From Cabane des Dix to Cabane des Vignettes
After a short downhill to reach the Glacier de Tsena Refien, we go up to the Pigne d’Arolla (3796m/12454ft): the summit of the Pigne d’Arolla is one of the most beautiful panoramic view on the Alps! We go down on the Glacier du Vuibe to reach the Cabane des Vignettes (3160m/10367ft) which will be the end of this magnificent glacier day.
Vertical ascent: 1027m/3369ft - Vertical descent: 804m/2637ft
Day 5: From Cabane des Vignettes to Cabane Bertol
We start the journey with a short downhill to the glacier of Mont Collon, which we hike up until Col de l’Evêque (3392m/11128ft). Then, we go down the Haut glacier d’Arolla until the Plan Bertol (2550m/7381ft); from which we start our climb to the Cabane Bertol (3311m/10862ft). Perched on a rocky promontory, we have to take a series of ladders to reach the Cabane Bertol.
Vertical ascent: 950m/3116ft -Vertical descent: 1050m/3444ft
Day 6: From Cabane Bertol to Cabane Schonbiel
We traverse the Grand Planteau of the glacier of Mont Miné to reach Tête Blanche summit (3710m/12171ft). It is a magnificent point of view on the Dent Blanche (4357m/14294ft), the Matterhorn (4476m/14685ft) and many 4000 meters peaks. We go down to the glacier de Stocki and the glacier du Zmutt. From there, we reach the comfortable Schönbiel hut (2694m/8838ft).
Vertical ascent: 565m/1853ft - Vertical descent: 1100m/3608ft
Day 7: From Cabane de Schönbiel to Zermatt
We continue or descent to Zermatt trough a peaceful path in the middle alpine pasture. All along the descent, we could admire the view on the Matterhorn. We arrive in Zermatt at the end of the morning. Lunch in Zermatt.
Transfer to Chamonix in OPTION at the beginning of the afternoon (90€/pers).
Vertical descent: 1806m/5925ft
Group session associates several people who don’t know each other. It allows for a planned program to benefit from an attractive price on fixed dates. This formula is ideal for people looking for the friendliness of a group.
Dates 2020 : From Sunday to Saturday
June 21 to 27 - July 05 to 11 - July 19 to 25.
Price 2020 : 1505€ per person, based on a minimum of 4 persons.
Including in the package :
- Mountain guiding services,
- 6 Nights in mountain hut or inn with dinner and breakfast,
- Daily lunches,
- 1 bootle of water in each mountain hut,
- Lift tickets,
- Transfers mentioned in the program.
Not included in the package :
- Personal equipment,
- Other drinks,
- Mandatory repatriation insurance,
- Transfer back from Zermatt to Chamonix : Optional (90€ per person).
Private hiring is the historical relationship that binds a guide to his/her client. It allows you to be alone, or in a constituted group, with your guide that meets your specific needs. It is undoubtedly the ideal formula to realize your projects because it guarantees you a maximum of comfort. You are free to choose your departure date (depending on the availability of the huts) and the itinerary can be adjusted, according to your specific expectations.
Prices 2020 :
2 persons : 2660€ per person
3 persons : 2000€ per person
4 persons : 1670€ per person
5 persons : 1470€ per person
6 persons : 1340€ per person
Meeting point : Meet at 10.00am at the Compagnie des Guides office in Chamonix.
Ability level : An appropriate choice of peak is essential for you to properly enjoy your holiday. To get the most out of your trip we recommend you take regular exercise throughout the year and, where necessary, undertake specific training a few months before you leave. Try to avoid last minute training that can lead to injury. Do not to overestimate your abilities, and do be aware that the weight of your pack and higher altitudes reduce your usual strength and stamina. For strong hikers: daily hike and/or climb vertical gain ranging from 1000 to 1500 meters, 8 to 10 hours per day, at high or very high altitude (4000 m and above). Little glacier-hiking experience is necessary (crampons).
Guiding policy : 4 to 6 people. The Compagnie des Guides de Chamonix's guiding policy is one of the strictest in the mountain guiding business. It guarantees the most balanced groups as possible as well as high-quality personalised advice. Minor, only accompagnied by a parent.
Accomodation : During the trip: 6 nights in huts; with dinner & breakfast. Water is not provided in the hut. Bring some cash (Euros and Swiss francs) for your drinks.
Before & after the trip: We have some hotel partners in Chamonix with special prices for our customers.
Documentation : Participants must have mountain sports insurance with repatriation cover. We strongly recommend that this also includes cancellation cover. You can take out insurance offering both of these types of cover when you sign up. Participants must also take valid ID with them.
Preparing for the trip : One week before the trip, the mountain guide will be in contact to answer any questons you may have.
We recommend you take particular care over you choice of equipment, as it plays a large role in the success of your trip. Weight is critical, and you must always evaluate the weight-to-comfort ratio to find the best compromise.
Weather conditions can be extremely variable: from 20ºC on the approach route to the hut, to -15ºC on the summit (like a cold winter’s day in a ski resort). Generally speaking, it is better to put on several thin layers than to have one bulky item of warm clothing, and it is vital that you remain dry at all times.
- 35-litre backpack
- High-altitude mountaineering boots that are not too tight
- Gaiters, if needed for your trousers
- Telescopic trekking poles
- Crampons with anti-balling plates; helmet, harness and straight ice axe
- Warm hat that can be worn under a helmet
- Sun hat or cap
- Neck protection such as a ‘Buff’
- ‘Micro-fibre’ style long-sleeve base layer
- ‘Gore Tex’ style shell jacket with hood
- Down jacket
- Base layer leggings
- A trekking trousers,
- ‘Gore Tex’ style over-trousers
- Warm specialist walking socks
- Lightweight specialist walking socks
- Ski gloves or good quality mitts
- Leather or fleece gloves
- Change of clothes at your discretion
- Category 4 sunglasses
- Ski goggles
- Headtorch plus spare batteries
- Sheet sleeping bag
- Water bottle (minimum 1.5l) and thermos bottle
- Personalised first aid kit with a minimum of: sun cream, lip balm, cotton buds, blister kit, antisickness medication
- Watertight bag to contain your ID/passport and Euros
Rental : You can rent your equipment with our partners Sanglard Sports & Ravanel & Co, and benefit from special prices.
A 10€ discount voucher coming from the shop Au Vieux Campeur will be given to the first 500 clients from the ‘Cie des Guides’ (voucher to be collected at our office). Closest shop ‘Au Vieux Campeur’ : Sallanches.
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