Alpine Essentials is designed to teach you all the fundamental skills for climbing in the Alps.
During this 5 day course we will start with alpine rock climbs and scrambles while we acclimatise, learning appropriate ropework and belaying skills on the way. The second part of the week we spend in the high glaciated mountains of the Mont Blanc massif, taking in 2 quality peaks while we learn appropriate crampon, rope and crevasse rescue techniques.
The course is flexible, so if rock is your thing we can focus more on that or vice versa - let us know on your booking form.
Who is it for?
A good level of fitness, previous hillwalking and/or scrambling experience is all you need for this course. Previous rock climbing experience is helpful too.
A perfect week for alpine first timers or old-hands looking for a great weeks' climbing while brushing up their skills.
When staying in Chamonix, we stay in one of our comfortable Adventure Base Chalets, literally 6 minutes walk from the town centre's restaurants and bars. Breakfast and packed lunch are included leaving the evenings free for you to explore the delights of Chamonix.
What to expect from mountain huts
They are basic but comfortable. They can cater for vegetarians. Food is usually on a set menu basis (3 course in the evening, hot drink and bread/jam/cereal for breakfast). Often there is no running water and so we have to buy water to drink and wash with (no showers). You can usually buy tea, coffee, wine, beer, soft drinks, chocolate bars and snacks. Sleeping arrangements are normally dormitory style bunkbeds (eg 6 people on the bottom, 6 on the top) with blankets or duvets. The huts provide slippers for wearing inside. We ask the hut guardians to provide a packed lunch on this course. You can expect a good atmosphere and a stunning view!
Sunday: We meet on Sunday evening to go through the weather/conditions and plan for the week.
Monday: Multipitch rock climbing and abseiling in Chamonix valley. Stay in Chamonix.
Tuesday: Traverse of the Clocher-Clochetons or Aig Crochue in the Aig Rouges, stay in Chamonix. A day looking at scrambling and 'short roping' skills.
Wednesday: Traverse the glacial Vallee blanche from the Aig du Midi to Pt Helbronner. Overnight in the Torino hut. A day looking at glacier travel skills and crevasse rescue.
Thursday: Climb the Tour Ronde and overnight in the Cosmiques hut. Putting all the skills in practice!
Friday: Climb Mt Blanc du Tacul and return to Chamonix. A final day polishing your new skills.
Local transport in the Chamonix valley is included.
*Note: Chalet accommodation, local transport and packed lunches are not included in the 'Course Only' price.