Tour du Mont Blanc – August 2015


 

Tour du Mont Blanc

Our group silhouette with the Mont Blanc range in the background. Near Lac des Chesrys. Day 11 of the tour (Aug 27, 2015) – Img 50297

 

Mont Blanc, Aug 18, 2015

Our first hike to the Grand Balcon (Grand balcony) trail provide this view of Mont Blanc – Img 48869

 

 

les Houches to les Contamines, Aug 19, 2015

Day 3 of our tour began in the misty rain. We crossed a river where there was a view of the Bonnassay glacier but never saw it. The mist did provide a eitherial view – Img 48920 I3494 – Tom’s iphone shot by Wam Human

 

 

Tom and Barbara,  Aug 19, 2015

Tom and Barbara coming up the trail towards les Contamines. Day 3 of our tour – Img 48965

 

 

Water fall near Notre Dame de la Gorge, Aug 20, 2015

After a few minutes of hiking up an old roman road from Notre Dame de la Gorge, we climbed down into a small gorge to see this water fall. Day 4 of our tour – Img 49106

 

 

Roman Road, Aug 20, 2015

Took this shot looking back toward Notre Dame de la Gorge. The fireweed in the foreground was about to finish blooming. Day 4 of our tour – Img 49152

 

 

Roman Road, Aug 20, 2015

The fourth day of our tour we needed to climb about 4500ft up, 3800ft down and do about 11 miles. The pass is not visible from here but we are going over the saddle on the left and then over the pass behind the rock ”column” on the left peak (called good man) Img 49162

 

 

Roman Road, Aug 20, 2015

Our group heading for the pass on day 4. From left to right: Barbara, Sydney, Jane, John, Tom, Andy, Wam, John, and Andrea – Img 49163

 

 

Randy and Tom on the Roman Road, Aug 20, 2015

First rest stop on our 4,500ft accent toward les Chapieux on the tour de Mont Blanc – Img 49177

 

 

Tour du Mont Blanc, Aug 20, 2015

View from the trail after the pass. Day 4 of our tour – Img 49247

 

 

Near les Chapieux, Aug 20, 2015

Saw this abandoned stone building on the way down into les Chapieux. Likely was used when more cows/sheep were grazed in the area – Img 49328

 

 

 

Auberge de la Nova, Aug 21, 2015

We spent the night in this auberge before we continued and crossed into Italy on the tour du Mont Blanc. Beginning of day 5 – Img 49341

 

 

Toward Courmayeur, Aug 21, 2015

On the trail from les Chapieux France to Courmayeur Italy. The pass is on the right side hidden by the foot hill. Day 5 of the tour – Img 49378

 

Refuge Elisabeletta Soldini – Italy – Aug 20, 2016

Passed by this hut after crossing into Italy from France. Three different glaciers converging in the background. Day 5 of our tour – Img 49443

 

 

Randy & Tom – Tour du Mont Blanc – Aug 22, 2015

On a balcony trail after climbing up from Courmayeur, Italy on our way to Bonatti Hut. Day 6 of our tour – Img 49487

 

 

Mont Blanc, Aug 22, 2015

The clouds finally parted to get a view of Mont Blanc. We are on our way to Bonatti Hut – Img 49498

 

 

Mont Blanc

Our hiking group on the balcony trail heading for Bonatti Hut. Mont Blanc visible between the clouds and at the bottom of the photo is the tunnel under Mont Blanc. Day 6 of our tour – Img 49522

 

 

Mont Blanc Sunset, Aug 22, 2015

Sunset with Mont Blanc from the Bonatti Hut. Rain in the forecast for the next day – Img 49565

 

 

Bonatti Hut, Aug 23, 2015

Leaving Bonatti Hut in the rain on the tour du Mont Blanc – Img 49569

 

 

Rain – Mont Blanc, Aug 23, 2015

Our group all geared up for a hike in the rain to La Fouly. Our tour guide, Wam, working hard to keep our spirits up. We climb to our highest point on this trail but spent very little time at the pass because it was cold, raining and windy. Day 7 of the tour – Img 49575

 

 

Switzerland – Tour du Mont Blanc, Aug 23, 2015

Over the pass and into Switzerland in the rain. Day 7 of the tour – Img 49594

 

Tour du Mont Blanc, Aug 24, 2015

The trail follows along a large wash that keeps eroding the Swiss grassland. Still a few sprinkles but beginning to clear up. Day 8 of the tour – Img 49658

 

 

Issert, Switzerland – Tour du Mont Blanc, Aug 24, 2015

You can see our group hiking on the left side of the photo. They are going into one of several Swiss hamlets that the Mont Blanc trail goes through. I am behind taking photos of flowers along the trail. Day 8 of the tour – Img 49743

 

 

Lunch by Fabi

Tom, John, and Jane are digging into the lunch spread created by our guide/logistics person, Fabi. Hard to lose any weight on this tour – Img 49749

 

 

Mushroom, Aug 24, 2015

The rains brought out the mushrooms of all types. Our guide thought this one was the toxic Amanitus but I am not so sure (but not going to eat it!) – Img 49771

 

 

Into the Woods – Tour du Mont Blanc, Aug 25, 2015

Day 9 of our tour began in the woods. and we headed for the Bovine trail – Img 49801

 

 

Mushroom on Trail, Aug 25, 2015

Found many unusual mushrooms on the trail in the forest on the Bovine trail – Img 49843

 

 

Bovine Trail, Aug 25, 2015

Finally see some blue sky peeking out as we climb up the Bovine section of the Tour du Mont Blanc – Img 49864

 

 

Bovine Trail – Tour du Mont Blanc, Aug 25, 2015

Cows on the Bovine trail?? The massive bells on the cows is a local tradition to help find the cows in the alpine areas. Each one of these bells are hand crafted and cost about 400 euros – Img 49920

 

 

 

Randy’s Bath with a View – Aug 25, 2015

Nice view from this bath but the spring water was really cold! (the tub was empty so several of us had some fun with the photos) Img 49942

 

 

Bovine Trail Lunch, Aug 25, 2015

Most of our lunches were out in a field with a great view (and a nap afterwards) but this one was from a hut (also with a great view). – Img 49953

 

 

Tour du Mont Blanc, Aug 26, 2015

Great view of the Mont Blanc range as we leave Switzerland and cross back into France. Day 10 of our tour – Img 50038

 

Randy Balanced on the Swiss-French Border, Aug 26, 2015

Img 50060 5043i – Shot with Wam’s smartphone

 

 

Img 50060 5043i – Shot with Wam’s smartphone

The group celebrates the mountain view and seeing our final destination. Members of the group from left to right: Wam, Jane, John, Andy, Andrea, Barbara, John, Sydney, Randy and Tom – Img 50066

 

After Lunch Naps, Aug 26, 2015

Our guide trained us to take a nap after our lunches (I still feel like doing this even now). Tom is doing his nap and taking an occasional peek at the great view – Img 50073

 

 

Lac des Chesrys, Aug 27, 2015

Randy taking a swim in the rather cold alpine lake. Did not stay in very long. Wam is in the background jumping back in after swimming to the small island – Img 50250

 

 

Aiguille du Midi, Aug 28, 2015

View from 12,600 feet from Aiguille du Midi after riding two separate cable lifts (from ~ 4000ft) – Img 50338

 

 

Aiguille du Midi, Aug 28, 2015

View from 12,600 feet toward Mont Blanc (covered in the clouds) – Img 50385

 

 

Cable Lift up to Aiguille du Midi, Aug 28, 2015

The small tower at the top point is where the cable lift travels to/from (Aiguille du Midi) – Img 50407

 

 

Mer de Glace, Chamonix – Aug 28, 2015

The Mer de Glace (Sea of Ice) is one of the glaciers traveling down toward Chamonix, France. The glacier once filled the barren area between the mountains. We walked down stairs toward the glacier and saw markers showing the reduced height of the glacier through the years.  We were amazed how much the glacier had shrunk. Estimates are that in 50 years it will disappear completely – Img 50485

 

 

Mer de Glace – Chamonix, Aug 28, 2015

Standing on the glacier looking up. Tom and I counted about 450 steps coming back up the wall after visiting the glacier – Img 50520

 

First Light on Aiguille du Midi, Aug 29, 2015

The view from our hotel and the first light on Aiguille du Midi (left side) where we had been the day before – Img 50534

Categories: Hikes

4 comments

  1. All the pictures of this trip/hike are beautiful but I really love this one! (“Waterfall near Notre Dame de la Gorge, Aug 22, 2015” photo)

  2. This trip just looks amazing! (“Switzerland – Tour Du Mont Blanc Aug 23, 2015” photo)

  3. Hilarious! (“Randy’s Bath with a View” photo)

  4. Warrior3 (“Randy Balanced on Swiss – French Border” photo)

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