Tour de Mt Blanc 1
Dec 25, 2012Public
Photo: We start our adventure in Chamonix, France ...
Photo: ... under the snow dome of mighty Mt. Blanc, the highest mountain in the Alps.
Photo: Mt. Blanc and associated peaks form a small mountain range of their own, the Mt. Blanc Massif.
Photo: Our plan is to walk around the entire Mt. Blanc Massif, passing through Italy and Switzerland, and ending up back here in about 12 days.
Photo: The next morning Marcia, Debbi, and I start our adventure at a bus stop.
Photo: Early morning light streams through the Grandes Jorasses, the same jagged peaks that we saw lit up last night.
Photo: ... illuminating the summit Mt. Blanc itself, 15,782 ft. high.
Photo: After a bus ride to Les Houches, we take the telepherique, thus sparing ourselves the pointless 2,000 ft. initial climb.
Photo: From the top we enjoy a pleasant walk downhill to Les Contamines, mostly on country roads.
Photo: Mt Blanc's summit dome looms above us.
Photo: It doesn't take long to reach Les Contamines, where we spend the night at a charming B&B.
Photo: Breakfast in the garden the next morning ...
Photo: Discovering that the mountain refuge we planned to hike to today is full, we call a taxi thereby eliminating another pointless climb.
Photo: Some hikers we ....
Photo: Our driver takes us as far as he can.
Photo: We're on our own now.
Photo: We depart Les Chapieux, altitude 5100 ft. ...
Photo: ... and head for Refuge Le Mottets at 6135 ft., a modest 1000 ft. climb, mostly on road.
Photo: It's all uphill now until we hit the Italian border. Ahead, the Aiguille des Glaciers (12,519 ft.)
Photo: Above this simple chapel you can see the pass into Italy. We'll cross it tomorrow.
Photo: Tonight we stay at the Refuge les Mottets, a former sheep farm.
Photo: Our room