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South West Ridge – Pollux PD+, III

South West Ridge – Pollux - Zermatt

South West Ridge – Pollux - Zermatt


Mountaineering & Ski Touring

Route Gallery:

Route description:

Pollux is a bit of a snow bump on the ridge when viewd from Zermatt, but the mountain offers several short and accessible routes and from the summit there is a magnificent panorama of the surrounding giants.

The south-west ridge of pollux is the normal route, and offers a varied climb including some scrambling, a harder pitch (complete with fixed chains to pull on) followed by a snow arete to the summit.

It can be a bit crowded on summer days, due to the bottle neck nature of the chains, and this can add to the timings listed below.

For fast teams in good conditions it is possible to make a climb of both Castor and Pollux in a single day, especially if using the Guide d'Ayas refugio rather than rushing back to the lift.

Required experience/skill level:

Beginner - Intermediate

Length (in metres):

Summit: 4092m

350m ascent from Klien Matterhorn lift.

670m from Val d'Ayas refugio


4 hours in ascent, 3 hours descent to Klien Matterhorn

Starting point/base:

Klien Matterhorn lift accessed from Zermatt, or Guide d'Ayas refugio.

Maximum guide ratio:


Normal season:

Normally Mid June to end of September, but conditions vary every season.

Can also be climbed on skis as part of a ski mountaineering trip in the region.

Links/ featured courses:

Lifts/huts etc:


Lots of other ascents in this area, including the twin of Pollux, Castor.

The half traverse of the Briethorn is another good option, all of which can be climbed from Zermatt using the Klien Matterhorn lift, or from the excellent Guide d'Ayas refugio.

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It's that time of year.... the summer isn't far away and it's worth thinking about summer alpine plans early. Booking guides and huts are worth doing in advance! And that isn't a marketing ploy by the way :)
This year we have a few trips scheduled, including Mont Blanc (3 trips), Matterhorn and some lesser known peaks like the Domes du Miage.
Have a browse of the scheduled trips page - and give us a bell if you'd like to arrange a trip on different dates, we have a list of people who'd like to share some guided climbing adventures.
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Mellow laps through the trees with Rob and Louise today. So quiet - fresh tracks all day 👍

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Superb weather and soft snow on the Vallee Blanche today. Even got some fresh tracks, although not shown on this video.
A pleasure to be skiing and guiding the white valley again 👍⛷

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