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Aiguille Verte, Whymper Couloir
PHOTO: Les Drus and the Aiguille Verte behind, in a covering of winter snow.
FEEDBACK: "A big thank you to everyone who helped me realise this summit. It took a year of
prepararation and training for me, but you guys made it happen"
Debbie S, London, 2003
Course Overview
The Verte is described as “slender, snow-glittering form hanging ethereally above the gothic rock splendour of its satellite the Dru” in Goedeke’s Alpine book, and yet even this does no justice to the might and elegance of this mountain. The peak was first ascended by Edward Whymper in 1865, and is classified as the Alpine summit that turns you from a climber into a true mountaineer.
This week trains and acclimatises you, before taking the best weather window for the ascent. We only offer this course between mid June and mid July each Summer, as the conditions are at their best in the Whymper Couloir at this time.
The itinerary for this course (and all our advanced level courses) is deliberately flexible to take advantage of the best weather window and conditions, as the key focus of the week is the ascent of the Aiguille Verte. There are two route options to reach the summit, the Moine ridge which is a long mixed arete, or the Whmper couloir which after an initial mixed section is all on snow and ice. The exact route can often not be decided upon until you reach the Couvercle mountain hut, as the couloir is only in safe conditions after a series of cold and clear nights.
Both routes require very early starts, often around midnight, to get the best conditions on the route, and to minimise the risks from stonefall. This course includes five days of 1:1 Guiding, so you are really able to benefit from pushing yourself to the limits of your abilities, and you will learn loads. The summit of the Verte is all on snow, and you normally arrive at the top around six or seven in the morning. From here the view across to the rest of the Mont Blanc massif is amazing, as the Verte is so high a satellite peak, and is split from the main Mont Blanc group by the Vallee Blanche and Mer de Glace glacier systems.
Dates: Run on demand from June through to August. For current availability on this course click here.
So why choose Icicle?
We are true specialists in providing this activity. See our blog, by clicking on the logo (right).
Icicle Blog
Itinerary flexibility to allow you to take full advantage of the weather and conditions each day, so that you maximise the amount of time spent in the mountains.
Our prices are fixed in £ pounds sterling, to protect you from euro currency fluctuations, so that you can budget accurately.
We have a team of over 30 guides, and a resort support team, who all want you to have the best holiday possible! For more details on the guiding team and qualifications, please click here.

Course Photo Gallery

Course Prices
Standard course
5 days guiding, 7 days holiday in total £2999
Live availability
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see the real time live course availability
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Standard Course Inclusions: 1) IFMGA Mountain Guide for five days, 2) Chamonix course hosts for logistics & briefings, 3) Self-catered accommodation in Chamonix (inc. beddings & towels), 4) Pre course information booklet, 5) Equipment discount voucher for UK shops, 6) Free 36 page technical Course Instruction Booklet, 7) Road transport in Chamonix valley and to / from Tasch, 8) One night half board in mountain hut (inc. costs for guides), 9) Evening technical instruction on nights in Chamonix.
Exclusions: 1) Travel to and from Chamonix, 2) Equipment hire, 3) Personal laundry, telephone calls, lunches, evening meals in valley, & any purchases in mountain huts / hotels / restaurants, 4) Cable cars and uplift for you and your guide (cable cars for guide included in Chamonix), 5) Transport / tunnel ticket outside the Chamonix valley, 6) Activities insurance, & excess baggage charges.
Course upgrade options
Many clients on this trip consider upgrading with one or more of the following course additions...
Big 5 Alpine
kit rental
  Upgrade to single from
£300-£500 in addition to
standard course price,
depending on week.
Extend by 2 days after
to ascend one of the
Big 5 Alpine peaks as
an extra summit.
Rent all technical kit
for a week. Full Alpine
Bundle costs you just
£100 for the week.
Saturday night spent in
Chamonix, with choice
of self-guided or guided
on Sunday. From £70.
  Click for details Click for details Click for details Click for details
Standard course accommodation - normally clients are based in self-catered flats (details), so take a look, and decide if it's for you. For more luxury, contact us for quotes in higher standard apartments, or hotels of any standard required. If you have / source your own course accommodation, or we cannot provide an upgrade, the standard course price has a £100pp reduction applied on your invoice.
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Any further questions?
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.

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