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Routes & Weather Conditions Page
Unless you are a regular visitor to the Alps, there is a bewildering range of information about when routes are in condition and what you can do at any time each year. To help you understand this, especially if you are planning a trip to the Alps, either through Icicle or unguided, this page is divided into two sections...
Summary of a typical Alpine year
This will help you to get a brief idea of what to expect each month. We review all the mountain conditions, types of route to climb each month, and all the typical hut and cable car openings.
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Full route reports of a year,
This is the weekly full conditions report for a whole year in the Alps, so that you gain a better appreciation of the types of routes ascended each month, and the key seasons for key routes.
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Photo: sunrise over the summit on an Icicle Kimimanjaro Expedition
Summary of a typical Alpine year
WATERFALL ICE: One of the best months as all routes come in condition.
ROCK: Totally out of condition, as snowy / ice, and the avalanche risk.
MOUNTAIN: Goulottes routes are good, but avoid snow face style routes.
SKIING: Most pistes open, and improving snow depth through the month.
MONT BLANC: Unclimbable due to the depth of fresh snow / avalanches.
MATTERHORN: Possible over several days of climbing and bivouacs.
WEATHER: Ususally very cold (c.-15C in valley), and dry conditions.
CABLE CARS: All cable cars open, as it is the key ski season.
WATERFALL ICE: Generally all routes in prime condition, even in valley.
ROCK: Totally out of condition, as snowy / ice, and the avalanche risk.
MOUNTAIN: Some altitude ice routes will form, & ridge routes are good.
SKIING: Good on and off piste skiing. Vallee Blanche generally possible.
MONT BLANC: Unclimbable due to the depth of fresh snow / avalanches.
MATTERHORN: May still be possible early in month unless lots of snow.
WEATHER: Not as cold, and regular snowfalls throughout the month.
CABLE CARS: All cable cars open, as it is the key ski season.


WATERFALL ICE: Still in condition, though past the peak conditions.
ROCK: Totally out of condition, as snowy / ice, and the avalanche risk.
MOUNTAIN: A good month for winter technical mountaineering ascents.
SKIING: Good skiing. Vallee Blanche generally possible. Touring starts.
MONT BLANC: Unclimbable on foot. First ski tour ascents at end of month.
MATTERHORN: May be possible towards end of month if not very snowy.
WEATHER: Similar weather patterns to during February, several snowfalls.
CABLE CARS: All cable cars open, as it is the key ski season.
WATERFALL ICE: Some route still climbable, but rapidly deteriorating.
ROCK: As the snow starts to melt, some valley crags become climbable.
MOUNTAIN: Approaches to routes require skis / snow shoes this season.
SKIING: Good skiing. Vallee Blanche may be possible. Touring very popular.
MONT BLANC: No foot ascents. Touring ascents popular from mid month.
MATTERHORN: Often possible until mid month when cable cars close.
WEATHER: Some warm days in the valley, and final winter snows up high.
CABLE CARS: Open until the last week of April then closed for 2 months.
WATERFALL ICE: Hang up your technical axes & crampons until December.
ROCK: Valley crags are now dry, & have been cleaned by the winter snows.
MOUNTAIN: Some good mountaineering conditions, but very few cable cars.
SKIING: Final month for piste skiing. Ski touring season is at its maximum.
MONT BLANC: No foot ascents. Touring ascents popular through month.
MATTERHORN: Off season. Too snowy for summer ascents & no cable cars.
WEATHER: Spring showers and getting much warmer throughout the month.
CABLE CARS: Most cable cars closed all month (seasonal maintainance).
WATERFALL ICE: No routes exist this month!
ROCK: Mountain rock and valley crags are dry, so this is a key rock month.
MOUNTAIN: Start of the summer season. Snow / ice routes good condition.
SKIING: Pistes closed. Possible ski touring at altitude. Put away your skis.
MONT BLANC: Final ski ascents / descents, & first mountaineering ascents.
MATTERHORN: Off season. Too snowy for summer ascents & no cable cars.
WEATHER: Valley temperatures up to 36C, and lower altitude windspeeds.
CABLE CARS: From mid month cable cars start to reopen for the summer.
WATERFALL ICE: No routes exist this month!
ROCK: Mountain rock and valley crags are dry, so this is a key rock month.
MOUNTAIN: Main summer season. Ice face routes are now out of condition.
SKIING: No skiing until December at earliest.
MONT BLANC: In condition, and busy from Bastille day in middle of month.
MATTERHORN: Summer conditions from mid month as the route dries out.
WEATHER: Fairly stable anticyclonic (high pressure) conditions dominant.
CABLE CARS: All main cable cars are open for the summer season.
WATERFALL ICE: No routes exist this month!
ROCK: Mountain rock and valley crags are dry, so this is a key rock month.
MOUNTAIN: The peak month for summer season. Snow routes getting icy.
SKIING: No skiing until December at earliest.
MONT BLANC: In condition, though getting quieter at the end of the month.
MATTERHORN: Summer conditions throughout month, as it is fairly dry.
WEATHER: Fairly stable anticyclonic (high pressure) conditions dominant.
CABLE CARS: Early starts on some key cable cars, eg Midi opens at 06:00.
WATERFALL ICE: No routes exist this month!
ROCK: Mountain rock and valley crags are dry, so this is a key rock month.
MOUNTAIN: Final month for most routes to remain in summer conditions.
SKIING: No skiing until December at earliest.
MONT BLANC: In condition, though it is colder up high due to Autumn.
MATTERHORN: May still be in condition in early, then in winter condition.
WEATHER: The anticyclonic conditions start to break down at end of month.
CABLE CARS: Some cable cars close from about the third week of the month.
WATERFALL ICE: No routes exist this month!
ROCK: As the weather degrades, seepage lines take routes out of condition.
MOUNTAIN: First winter snows start to fall. Access difficult without cable cars.
SKIING: No skiing until December at earliest.
MONT BLANC: Possible, but there will be fresh snows, and it will be very cold.
MATTERHORN: Off season. Too snowy for summer ascents & no cable cars.
WEATHER: Generally fairly bad weather, rain in valley, snow at altitude.
CABLE CARS: Most cable cars are closed for their seasonal maintenance.
WATERFALL ICE: No routes exist this month!
ROCK: Generally to cold & wet for rock climbing. Wait until April at earliest.
MOUNTAIN: Most routes are out of condition due to snow & no cable cars.
SKIING: No skiing until December at earliest.
MONT BLANC: Generally unclimbable due to unsettled weather and snowfall.
MATTERHORN: Off season. Too snowy for summer ascents & no cable cars.
WEATHER: Generally fairly bad weather, rain in valley, snow at altitude.
CABLE CARS: Most cable cars are closed for their seasonal maintenance.
WATERFALL ICE: Route start coming into condition from the mid month.
ROCK: Totally out of condition, as snowy / ice, and the avalanche risk.
MOUNTAIN: Some routes start to stabalise, & come into winter condition.
SKIING: Pistes open mid month. Thin conditions. Vallee Blanche closed.
MONT BLANC: Unclimbable due to the depth of fresh snow / avalanches.
MATTERHORN: Off season. Too snowy for summer ascents & no cable cars.
WEATHER: Getting colder and first major winter snows fall in the valley.
CABLE CARS: Most cable cars are running by the third week of December.
Full route and conditions reports of a full year in the Alps
End of month summary
The winter season really started from mid month, and the icefalls formed rapidly. There was no snow in the valley until the 16 December. The Midi reopened from seasonal maintenance, though there is still very restricted skiing.
27 - 31 Dec
Véry Icefalls, Megeve
Planay Icefalls, Megeve
Levure Icefalls, Cogne
Arete des Cosmiques
Trient, Switzerland
Midi Plan traverse
Repentance, Cogne

Route in very good condition for time of year
Icefalls and dry / mixed routes all climbable
The route is now in good climable condition
Good track up route & in very good condition
The routes including Prozac, all now formed
Not too snowy to complete all of the traverse
Whole route now is perfectly formed already
Ice quite brittle, but route in excellent condition

20 - 26 Dec
La Cremerie
Mer de Glace
Mini Couloir
Trient Icefall Gorge
Coyote, Cogne
Vallée Blanche
Cascade Lillaz
Aiguille du Midi

Ice conditions are improving on the left side
Access still possible via the main ladders
Track reaches top of route in deep snow
Gorge sector in thin state at the moment
Still quite delicate, but good ice conditions
Two guides rescued as not enough snow
Bottom section formed, top still very thin
Reopened after seasonal maintenance

14 - 19 Dec
General weather
La Cremerie icefalls
Patrie, Val de Cogne
Gaillands crag
Warm in valley until mid month, then snow
Mainly formed, thin in middle, wet on left
Well formed on both the left and the right
Dry and non avalanche prone until 15th
1 - 14 Dec
Midi Cable car
Grands Montets
Climbing Routes
Closed for seasonal maintenance for 3 weeks
Cable car closed due to technical problems
Not a lot going on at the moment .......
End of month summary
There still hasn't been any valley snow yet, but there was a fair amount at altitude. The cable cars are mostly shut for seasonal maintenance. The Autumn has been quite dry, so the valley icefalls are forming very slowly for this time of year.
1 - 30 Nov
All Cable Cars
Climbing Routes
All closed apart from Midi & Montenvers
Not a lot going on at the moment .......
End of month summary
There has been a lot of snow at altitude, and this month saw very Autumnal weather in the valley. The cable cars are mostly shut for seasonal maintenance now, and most of the shops & hotels in Chamonix are closed as it is out of season.
1 - 31 Oct
All Cable Cars
Climbing Routes
All closed apart from Midi & Montenvers
Not a lot going on at the moment .......
End of month summary
The weather was generally a lot better than August, and the first half of the month was very settled. At the end of the month the first winter snows started falling at altitude, and the cable cars are mostly shut for seasonal maintenance now.
19 - 30 Sept
Flegere & Index lifts
Brevent & Planpraz lifts
Chere Couloir, Tacul
Mont Blanc Traverse
Tacul, Normal Route
Cable car closed for seasonal maintenance
Cable car closed for seasonal maintenance
Quite dry, but possible due to recent snows
Possible in early week, though very windy
Very good track, but constant high winds
12 - 19 Sept
Gran Paradiso, Ridge
Italian side of Mt Blanc
Aiguillette d'Argentiere
Traverse of Crochues
Mont Blanc Gouter
Route in fine condition, and huts quiet now
Better weather than Chamonix, and rock dry
Rock still dry, and not very busy. Good day
Only one other group on the route. All dry
Climbed but in very high winds (c 80km/h)!
5 - 12 Sept

Aiguille de Beranger
Mont Blanc Traverse
Midi Plan Arete
Cosmiques Arete, Midi
Pointe Lachenal
Marchand de Sable
Bienvenue au Georges V
Le Piege & Pedro Polar

Glacier still fine condition, and rock all dry
Excellent, good tracks, Maudit fixed rope
Good track, and not too icy even near Plan
Quite dry for time of year, some loose rock
Chimney on traverse still has some snow in it
Perfect conditions on route, but quite busy
All seepage lines have dried out on the route
New route has been equipped just to the side
Good condition, dry rock, and not too busy
1 - 5 Sept
Frisson Roche, Brevent
Rebuffat on Aig du Midi
Floria, Contrefort Droite
Petite Aiguille Verte
Mont Blanc Traverse
Mont Blanc Gouter
Petit Bargy, Cluses
Index, Normal Route
Crochues Traverse
Grands Montets lift
Route very dry, though busy in good weather
Good condition & dry, but rimaye quite open
The routes have all finally dried out totally
Dry route, and some stonefall, but still safe
Very good condition throughout the route
Good, though stonefall in Gouter couloir high
Routes all in dry condition. Beware of old pitons
Route quite busy as in last weeks of cable car
Route very dry, but glacier very icy for descent
Cable car closed for seasonal maintenance
End of month summary
The first half of the month was more settled and dry, but the last two weeks saw lots of fresh snowfall and the effects of Foehn winds in the massif. The Midi cable car was effectively closed all month, though access possible from Italian cable cars.
22 - 31 August
Aiguille du Midi
Dome du Gouter
Mont Blanc
Aiguille de Bionassay
Machaby, Aoste Valley
Aiguilles d'Entreves
Matterhorn, Hornli
Dent du Geant
Aiguille du Tour
Le Tour Cable Cars
Cable car reopened again at the end of August!
Avalanche and serac fall just to the left of route
Not possible at all due to new snow and wind
Very large avalanche down northern flanks
Routes all dry and popular due to good weather
Good conditions, and snow has improved route
Snow made route in winter conditions, hut closed
Deep snow on the approach, but route possible
Good conditions, some stonefall near summit
Cable car closed for seasonal maintenance
15 - 22 August
Kuffner Arete, Maudit
Mont Blanc Gouter
Aravis Limestone
Argentiere, Fleche Rousse
Mont Blanc, Traverse
Traverse of Crochues
Index Cable Car
Gran Paradiso, Normal
Impossible to ascend due to wind and foehn
Good, though stonefall in Gouter couloir high
All the routes dry and in good conditions
Glacier was very open on the approach to route
Too much snow to even consider the route
A little coating of snow on the route throughout
Closed for majority of week due to high winds
Lots of fresh snow on route, to base of glacier
8 - 15 August
Frisson Roche, Brevent
Dent du Geant
Aiguilles d'Entreves
Petite Aig Verte
Domes du Miages
Montets-Lognan traverse
Mont Blanc, Traverse
G Jorasses, Italian Side
Mont Dolent, Normal
Very good route, and not too busy. Rock is dry
Cold and windy on summit, but good conditions
No rockfall at all on route, so in safe condition
Stonefall risk on both routes, and little snow left
Good conditions throughout, with some ice now
Almost no snow left now. Steep initial descent
Now safe due to new route up Tacul on left side
Very good conditions up to the Pointe Walker
Snow in OK condition, and no rockfall nearby
1- 8 August
Aiguille du Midi
Helbronner Lift
Aig de Bionassay
Monte Rosa region
Kuffner Arete, Maudit
Chapelle du la Gliere
Mont Blanc, Gouter
Drus & Nant Blanc Face
Mont Blanc, Traverse
Cable car broken again, scheduled to open end Aug
This is open, as is Gondola, for access to Aig du Midi
Good condition in traverse from Durier to Gouter
SAFETY - fresh snow, so avalanche risk very high
Snow still in OK condition throughout the route
All route is dry, and now quieter than last month
In very good conditions, due to cold clear nights
Rockfall near Pic Sans Nom, as face is very dry now
Difficult section on Tacul over crevasse & under serac
End of month summary
Really mixed weather this year, with an unseasonally large amount of snow at altitude, which has raised avalanche risks far higher than normal. Midi cable car now open, which has given easy access in periods of good weather.
25 - 31 July
Aiguille d'Argentiere
South Ridge of Moine
Gran Paradiso, Normal
Gran Paradiso, N Face
Cherie Couloir
Cosmiques Arete
Traverse of Crochues
Mont Blanc, Gouter
Ciaforon, North Face
Y-Couloir very good, Milieu Glacier difficult to cross
Very good condition, and route is all dry and safe
Route still in OK condition, despite being very hot
Out of condition now, and Chabot glacier very open
Good conditions, though thin sections in middle
Very good condition throughout the route
Quite busy, due to start of key French holidays
Some stonefall now in couloir, so be very careful
Exposed to frequent stonefall due to weeks heat
18 - 25 July
Hornli Arete, Matterhorn
Dent du Geant
Rochefort Arete
Montets Ridge of Verte
Castor & Pollux
Midi Plan Traverse
Monte Rosa Region
Chapelle de la Gliere
Liskaam West Peak
Lion & Hornli, Matterhorn
Mont Blanc Traverse
Hornli Refuge closed due to more snow & avalanche
Approach mixed climb still in very good conditions
Double cornices make traverse very interesting now
Climbed over two days in quite snowy weather
Snow starting to stabalise, especially on Castor
Now the traverse is in much better / safer condition
There is a lot of snow in the West, less in the East
Route very busy, due to bad weather at altitude
Ascent OK. Traverse impossible due to snow amount
Full traverse of the mountain made in early week
First ascents made since avalanche 2 weeks ago
11- 18 July
Mont Blanc Traverse
Machaby, Italy
Hornli Arete, Matterhorn
Petite Aiguille Verte
Aiguille Joseph
Gouter, Mont Blanc
Climbing World Cup
Banff Mountain Films
No ascents made due to persisting avalanche risk
Rock all dry, even though weather bad on Mont Blanc
Ascent made to Solvay, but through very deep snow
Good condition, but getting busy due to high season
Very quiet, but routes all dry and good conditions
Still good condition, but use safety cable in couloir
Finals on Bastille eve, with final competitors winning
Wide range of mountain films, shown for free in Cham
4 - 11 July
Gran Paradiso
Normal Route, Tacul
Castor, Monte Rosa
Cosmiques Arete, Midi
Midi Plan Traverse
Aiguille du Midi
Good conditions all the way to the summit
Major wind slab avalanche near shoulder. 2 dead
Deep snow. 5 dead in fall from steep section of route
People aren't respecting the amount of fresh snow
Much busier now Midi is open, but in good condition
Still a lot of unconsolidated snow on route
Finally opened ahead of scheduled 16 July date
Wind slab avalanches are a high risk this week
1- 4 July
Mont Mallet Traverse
Traverse Vallee Blanche
Gervasutti Pillar, Tacul
Dent du Requin
Dalles d'Envers
Aig de Republique
Charmoz Grepon
Normal, Aiguille de l'M
Very good conditions, especially down to Leschaux
Well tracked as Midi closed, and Helbronner open
First ascent made this summer in good weather
Ascent made by the classic traverse route. Dry
Most routes now dry, but relatively quiet climbs
Approach difficult due to complicated rimaye crossing
Couloir approach still very snowy, but route great
Plenty of snow up to the col, then the rock is dry
End of month summary
Weather was very stable in the middle of the month, but unstable either side. Windspeeds at altitude have been high, but a lot of routes have really been in the prime of their summer condition this month, especially snow routes.
25 - 30 June
Traverse of Mont Blanc
Petite Bargy, Cluses
Kuffner Ridge, Maudit
Aiguilles d'Entreves
La Floria, Aig Rouges
North Face, Tour Ronde
Chevalier, P Aig Verte
Cold temperatures and quite windy, but good snow
Rock still snowy at base, but dry higher up route
Still in condition, but snow soft due to the warmth
Traverse route OK condition, now snow has receeded
New routes have been fully bolted on this mountain
Rimaye collapsed, making access to face harder
Route already dry / very mixed, for the rest of season
19 - 25 June
Traverse of Crochues
North Face, Tour Ronde
Gervasutti, T.Ronde
Moine Arete, Aig Verte
Normal, Gran Paradiso
Pointe Isabella
NNE Arete, Aig de l'M
Demilune, P Aig Verte
Popular route due to good weather at end of week
Good conditions, mid mixed section quite easy now
Good and stable condition now, though warm days
Mixed regions very snowy, but easy to climb across
Glacier still in very good condition, unlike last year!
Easy route has now been found through the rimaye
Route climbed by gaining access from Montenvers
No problems on route, even with recent snowfalls
12 - 19 June
Mont Blanc, Gouter
Nid d'Aigle
Dent du Geant
Aiguille de Bionassay
Moulin, Mer de Glace
Clochetons du Planpraz
Snowy in couloir, no rock fall, perfect conditions
Station finally cleared of snow and reopened on Fri
Renewed sections of rope make the ascent safer
Rock now dried out and Vipers route quite busy
Good conditions throughout the ridge, snowy mixed
Canyon shape this year, & great for ice climbing
Dry rock, and quiet as it is still pre holiday season
5 - 12 June
Shroud, Grand Jorasses
Rochefort Arete
Whymper, Aiguille Verte
S Arete of the Moine
Pyramide du Tacul
Kuffner Ridge, Maudit
Les Courtes, Traverse
Pointe Isabella
Steep and thin entry chimneys, then icy throughout
No recent tracks, and a lot of spring snow on route
Slightly icy in the middle, but still in OK condition
One chimney very icy, but otherwise quite dry
Small rockfall on right of route, but didn't affect climb
Completely on snow, and in very safe condtions
Quite snowy, but route is in great condition this year
Rimaye very difficult for clients trying this grade route
1- 5 June
Mont Blanc, traverse
Mont Maudit, N. Face
Whymper Couloir, Verte
Gervasutti, T.Ronde
Mont Blanc, G Mulets
North Face of T. Ronde
Couloir de Table, Tour
Tacul, Voie Normale
Brevent rock climbing
Deep snow, but ascent made with no problems
Great conditions, 20m abseil to descend rimaye
Perfect and icy, quick ascent, rimaye quite big
Avalanche down couloir, so still very snowy
Good conditions for ski decents of north face
Very good condition and icy throughout route
Lots of snow. Snowshoes not needed for approach
Much more direct route up face than last summer
Wear big boots as there is still lots of snow here
End of month summary
Lots of snow up high at the start of month, then intermittent good weather from mid May onwards as summer approaches. The Midi cable car broke its main lower cable, but no one was injured. This is forecast to reopen at the end of June.
9 - 31 May
Aiguille du Midi cable car
All other cable cars
Climbing / Skiing
Cable Car broke main cable during maintenance
Scheduled seasonal closure period
No reports as all cable cars closed until mid June
1 - 9 May
Aiguille du Midi cable car Closed for seasonal maintenance
End of month summary
Still no new snow at the start of the month meant a very early ski ascent of Mont Blanc was made, but just before all the ski lifts shut until summer, there was lots of snow at all levels. The snow falls continued until the end of the month.
25 - 30 April
Lifts Closing La Tour, Brevent, & Flegere lifts closed until mid June
18 - 25 April
Spring Snow up high No climbs or off piste / ski touring reported
11 - 18 April
Bad weather all week No climbs or off piste / ski touring reported
4 - 11 April
North Face, Mont Blanc Descent on skis possible, very early this year
1 - 4 April
Mont Blanc, G Mulets
Arete de Papillons
Argentiere Icefalls
First winter ski ascent this year, by 12 people
No snow on route, but rock was still very cold
Major section of Grand Bleu collapsed this week
End of month summary
The ice climbing season ended at the end of the month, but not a lot of new snow meant that black ice reappeared on some of the altitude mountaineering routes. Ski touring season now in full swing, and conditions are good & stable.
21 - 31 March
Haute Route Ski Tour
Cremerie Icefalls
Table de Roc ridge
Traverse or Chardonnet
Conditions good near Zermatt, Chamonix quite icy
Most ice climbs out of condition & unsafe now
Most fractured, especially on right, and unstable
Little snow on route, so ascent was quite quick
Route out of condition, black ice on the Bosses
14 - 21 March
3 windows ski tour
Couloir de Table
Index, Aig Rouges
On Piste Skiing
Gervasutti Pillar, Tacul
Trient Icefalls
Chardonnet quite steep, but all OK condition
Very snowy, but ski descent possible
Very little snow on route, as always in the sun
No snow in the valley, so rock climbers out now
Pistes below 2000m have no snow on them at all
Rock warmer and dry, so 3 parties on the route
Good conditions found in the gorge section
7 - 14 March
Repentance, WI 6
Cascade Lillaz
Cold Couloir, Cogne
Gran Paradiso on skis
Thierry Rebufat route
Good condition, but early start needed (5am)
Has come back into safe, but thin condition
Great conditions all the way up the gully to top
Via the Chabot glacier, though it was quite open
In very good condition, and easy access on skis
1 - 7 March
Cremerie Icefalls
Cosmique Arete
South Face of Midi
Frendo Spur
Traverse of Chardonnet
Ice a but rotten now and not in good state
Very snowy, but tracked to base of the route
Rock routes busy and the rock is now dry
Not possible above the rock pillar due to black ice
Black ice before the Bosses, so not possible
Winter traverse possible due to lack of snow
End of month summary
This month was the best so far this winter for ice climbing with lots in condition, though the valley / low icefalls eg Chatelard never formed safely this year. Winter mountain routes all in good condition, and off piste skiing is good.
22 - 29 Feb
Argentiere Icefalls
Patrie, Cogne
N Face of Petite Verte
Y Route, Aig Argentiere
Right bank icefalls, eg Shiva, are all fractured now
Approach pitches are brittle, upper is still good
Nice route, with ice in quite good condition
Quite thin, but good condition of snow and ice
15 - 22 Feb
EMHM Icefall
Cervina Off Piste
VB right bank
Gressoney icefalls
Patey Brown, Verte
Whymper Couloir, Verte
Shiva Lingam, WI 6
Good condition, as was Micro Goulotte route
All in good condition, with low avalanche risk
Black Bowl route perfect, with no tracks
All routes in condition, right down to the valley
Winter ascent possible by the Hornli Arete
Winter ascent made, ice in bad condition
In good condition, descended in 45 minutes!
A solo ascent was made, and abseil down route
8 - 15 Feb
Cremerie Icefalls
Nuit Blanche, WI 6
Tour Ronde, Gervasutti
EMHM Icefall, WI 4
Vallee Blanche
Fil a Plomb, Midi
All sections are in good state, including main wall
Top section quite thin, but OK on toprope
Very good condition, as was Mini Couloir
Good route now in condition. Ski descent possible
Very good, but very popular this week
Now in a very good and safe condition, all routes
Approach hard in snow, but route in great form
1 - 8 Feb
Aiguillete des Houches
Col du Tour Noir
Tubourg WI 5, Cogne
Petite Verte
La Tour
Petit Viking
Mallory Route, Midi
Ski Tour route on good snow right down to village
Ski Mountaineering on deep snow to the col
Good ice, has formed steep this season
OK condition, though quite icy on the ridge
Off piste skiing great off back of La Tour
Great conditions throughout the route
Route not possible due to the lack of snow on it
End of month summary
Ice conditions were quite mixed, but good ice could easily be found. Quite a lot of black ice on altitude routes, which is still the after effects of last summer. Latest opening of Vallee Blanche in recent memory, as snow took a while to build up.
25 - 31 Jan
Nuit Blanche, WI 6
Candelabro Coyotte
Tutto Relativo, Cogne
Gressoney Icefalls
Cosmiques Arete
Vallee Blanche Ridge
Good condition especially two top pitches
Good ice, but quite hard this year
Has now formed better as is in safe condition
Ski Mountaineering in great conditions now
All in good condition, especially Grade 5 & above
Quite snowy and very cold, but still possible
Finally there is enough snow, & ridge is equiped
18 - 25 Jan
Trient Icefalls
La Tour
Cascade Lillaz, Cogne
Tutto Relativo, Cogne
Patrie Icefalls, Cogne
Lillaz Gully, Cogne
Chamonix - General
Brittle ice, and not well formed. Snowy approach
Very big avalanche off back of La Tour to Trient
Good condition, first pitch possible to lead now
Very thin near base, but possible to climb
Very good conditions on left and right
Good conditions throughout the climb
Heavy snow all week, so no good climbing
11 - 18 Jan
Cascade Lillaz, Cogne
Cold Couloir, Cogne
Mini Couloir, Argentiere
North Face, Tour Ronde
Modica Noury
Supercouloir, Tacul
Jager Couloir, Tacul
Goulotte Cosmiques
Big pool at bottom of the first pitch, avoid to left
Swept by avalanches about twice a day
Very thin on top pitch - dry tooling. Good day
Black ice makes the route impossible
Bergschrund difficult, but route in good condition
Very thin, but possible to the top of the route
Good condition throughout. Ice plastic & good
Very dry, so aid rather than ice on steep pitches
4 - 11 Jan
Grand Bleu & Twins
Cosmiques Arete
EMHM Cascade
Patrie, Val de Cogne
Mer de Glace
Shiva Lingam, WI 6
Cherie Couloir
Very good condition, though approach hard
Good track up to the Abri Simond hut
Now in good condition, with plastic type ice
Good condition, though early start to avoid crowds
Ice climb in Moulin - dry as no water flowing
First ascent of the season this week
Fully formed and in good condition, and wide
The whole route is covered in thin black ice
1 - 4 Jan
EMHM Cascade, WI 4
Cremerie, Argentiere
Mer de Glace
Reposoir Icefalls
Aiguilles Rouges
Index Arete
Good condition, though a bit brittle on the steps
Covered in a thick layer of snow, but good ice
Starting to get a good cover for Vallee Blanche
Excellent condition mid week, melting by Friday
Good ski mountaineering conditions on back
Ascent by the normal route in winter conditions
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A key part of choosing a company is being able to come and talk about your plans with an experienced course advisor face to face. In an increasingly virtual world, we know our clients value speaking to real people, getting open and honest advice. The vast majority of our clients are British, and our office and outdoor store is based in Windermere in the English Lake District.

Get in contact to arrange a meeting, and come in for a coffee to discuss your course in person with a trip advisor. Many people opt for this service, and it is an integral part of what we offer, as we are keen to ensure that you are prepared as possible, and that you select a course that is suitable for you. It makes it easier and more enjoyable for you and us, if you are on the right trip.

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