Chamonix-Zermatt Haute Route on skis


2 standard variants – Verbier variant and Grand Lui/La Fouly variant.

Both variants require a Chamonix based “shake-out” day before setting off on the Haute Route to check skiing ability, equipment and fitness


Verbier variant

Day One – approx 8 hours. Chamonix to Cabane du Trient or Bivouac de l'Envers des Dorées. Take cable car to Grands Montets (3295m), descend to Glacier d’Argentiere (2640m), ascend to Col du Chardonnet (3321m), traverse Saleina glacier and Trient Glacier via the Fenetre de Saleina (3261) to the Cabane du Trient (3170). (The Bivouac de l’Envers des Dorées is an un-manned hut near the Cabane du Trient for lovers of solitude).

Day Two – approx 5 hours. Cabane du Trient to Cabane du Mont Fort. Descend via Col des Ecandies (2793m) and the Val d’Arpettes to Champex (1477). Catch bus or taxi to Le Chable (820 m). Take cable cars through Verbier (emergency shopping opportunities!) to Station Les Attelas (2723m). Descend to Cabane du Mont Fort (2457m).

Day Three – approx 8 hours. Cabane du Mont Fort to Cabane des Dix. Ascend to Col de la Chaux (2940), descend to the Lac du Mont Fort (2764m), traverse beneath Rosablanche via Col de la Rionde (3039m) and Col de Sovereu (3109m) (or go to summit of Rosablanche (3336m), descend to Lac des Dix (2390m), ascend to Cabane des Dix(2928m).

Day Four – approx 5 hours. Cabane des Dix to Cabane des Vignettes. Ascent of Pigne d’Arolla (3790m) via Col de Tsijiore Nouve (3440m) and Col du Brenay (3639m). Descent via Col de Charmotane (3037m) to Cabane des Vignettes (3160m).

Day Five – approx 10 hours. Cabane des Vignettes to Zermatt. Ascend to Col de l’Eveque (3382m), descend to the Haut Glacier d’Arolla (2900m), ascend to Col du Mont Brule (3213m), ascend to Col de Valpelline (3557m), descend Stockjigletcher to Zermatt (1619m).


Grand Lui – La Fouly variant

Day One – approx 8 hours, as for Verbier variant above.

Day Two – approx 6 hours. Cabane du Trient to La Fouly. Ascend to Fenetre de Saleina (3261m), descend to Glacier de Saleina (2870m), ascend to Col de la Grande Lui (3419m), descend to La Fouly (1593m).

Day Three – approx 5 hours. La Fouly to Grand St Bernard. Ascend to Fenetre d’en Haut (2724m), descend to Col du Grand St Bernard (2469m).

Day Four – approx 8 hours. Col du Grand St Bernard to Cabane de Valsorey. Descend to Bourg St Bernard (1927m), ascend to Col des Proz (2779m), traverse to Croix de Tsousse (2822m), descend to foot of Glacier du Tseudet (2200m), ascend to Cabane de Valsorey (3030m).

Day Five – approx 7 hours. Cabane de Valsorey to Cabane de Chanrion. Ascend to Plateau du Couloir (3650m). Traverse to Col du Sonadon, descend to Charmotane(2236m), ascend to Cabane de Chanrion (2462m).

Day Six – approx 7 hours. Cabane de Chanrion to Cabane des Vignettes. Ascend Glacier du Brenay to Col du Brenay (3639m), ascend Pigne d’Arolla (3790m), descend to Cabane des Vignettes (3160m).

Day Seven – approx 10 hours, as for Day Five of Verbier variant.

Note - weather, snow conditions, tiredness/injuries and hut bookings can all necessitate alterations to these itineraries.


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